Backup question

Hi All: I’m not sure where backup questions go, but here’s mine: my idea of a simple protection against a disk crash is to Clonezilla my entire hard drive (dual boot Opensuse and Vista) periodically. In the event of a crash, swap disks. (Believe it or not, this even works with W7!) The problems is Linux and it’s use of the disk serial number to reference SATA drives. Does anyone have an exhaustive list of the locations Linux uses for this? After a clone, I would have to manually change all these to the serial number of the Cloned target (backup) drive.

What’s the guru’s Wisdom on this? ANY time you restore to bare metal, I would think you’d run into this. For instance - a newly restored bare metal drive would not have these designations, so OS wouldn’t boot…

###Don’t change this comment - YaST2 identifier: Original name: linux###
title Desktop – openSUSE 11.4 - 2.6.37.6-0.9
root (hd0,2)
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.37.6-0.9-desktop root=/dev/sda3 resume=/dev/disk/by-id/ata-ST1000DL002-9TT153_W1V072QJ-part2 splash=silent quiet showopts vga=0x34a vga=0x375
initrd /boot/initrd-2.6.37.6-0.9-desktop

/dev/disk/by-id/ata-ST1000DL002-9TT153_W1V072QJ-part6 /OSS/Data ntfs-3g users,gid=users,fmask=133,dmask=022,locale=en_US.UTF-8 0 0
/dev/disk/by-id/ata-ST1000DL002-9TT153_W1V072QJ-part1 /OSS/Vista_x64 ntfs-3g users,gid=users,fmask=133,dmask=022,locale=en_US.UTF-8 0 0

The locations that I know about are:
/etc/fstab
/boot/grub/menu.lst
/etc/crypttab

When you install opensuse, there’s a not very obvious option in the partitioning section, where you can specify whether disks are known by id, by uuid, by label, or by device name. The default is to use id. But why not change to using uuid for the next install. That way, it won’t depend on the disk serial number.

First of all, if you are using Ext4 - the openSUSE default - to format your partitions, you are very unlikely to lose any data at all from a crash as long as you back up regularly (or use programs that automatically back up for you). Ext4 recovers from crashes/power failures extremely well. As long as you have a regular regime for backing up /home, mysql and any files in /etc that you have changed, you are unlikely ever to need to restore your Linux system - and even if you do, you will probably do it more quickly by reinstalling than by restoring a backup - unless you have a very idiosyncratic collection of programs in /.

So you should only need a backup of Vista to deal with crashes - in which case ask Clonezilla simply to clone the Windows partitions.

The only thing I’m worried about is that once-every-10-years-or-so hard drive crash - the one where you have to throw the hard drive in the trash (unrecoverable). Then you’re up for days reinstalling OS’s and trying to get your system back the way you had it (and you never really do). So having a ghosted (clonezilla) mirror of the drive seems to be the painless way to get up and running again - and this is now possible with 2TB drives available (I currently have 3 OSs on a 1.5 TB drive - just one drive to ghost!). A couple of times I tried backup programs but klutzes like me never get it right.

Thanks, you’re probably right about uuid. Now I wish I had done that. sda0, etc., was easy to understand for humans… :slight_smile:

By label also works as well as UUID. But you’d have to create a label. See e2label.

You can change the method by simply editing the /boot/grub/menu.lst file and etc/fstab files. If you look in the /dev/disk directory you will see the options all these different things are all available you just reference different link files that are in /dev/disk/by_XXXX, where XXX is the method name.

As long as you backup /home, mysql and anything you have changed in /etc, you can recover from a rare hard disk crash in about two hours with Linux; there is also a good chance that if the fail were to occur on a Linux partition you would already have been warned; I have an eleven year old hard drive on a 2000 computer where the warnings have started; so I shall replace it - I already have a backup of it.

The problem with Windows is that system and data files are all mixed up; so you have to clone everything - that is not the case with Linux and if you have a separate /home partition - the default with openSUSE - backing up and restoring is much simpler.

On 2012-01-05 21:46, john hudson wrote:
> First of all, if you are using Ext4 - the openSUSE default - to format
> your partitions, you are very unlikely to lose any data at all from a
> crash as long as you back up regularly (or use programs that
> automatically back up for you). Ext4 recovers from crashes/power
> failures extremely well.

I doubt that assertion.


Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” at Telcontar)

On 2012-01-05 17:46, nrickert wrote:
> The locations that I know about are:
> /etc/fstab
> /boot/grub/menu.lst
> /etc/crypttab

/boot/grub/device.map


Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” at Telcontar)

On 2012-01-06 01:46, PattiMichelle wrote:
> Thanks, you’re probably right about uuid. Now I wish I had done that.

Or labels.

> sda0, etc., was easy to understand for humans… :slight_smile:

No longer advisable.


Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” at Telcontar)

On 2012-01-06 02:46, ken yap wrote:
>
> By label also works as well as UUID. But you’d have to create a label.
> See e2label.

Yast will do it during install if requested.


Cheers / Saludos,

Carlos E. R.
(from 11.4 x86_64 “Celadon” at Telcontar)