My Computer Backups
Tagged with computers, foxclone, google, linux, overgrive, rescuezilla, timeshift on December 28, 2023
Until recently, I was a bit careless about maintaining computer backups. All of my documents and small software packages have been backed up to Google Drive for years, but nothing else. To be honest, I’ve neglected this aspect because I’ve always had plenty of time to reinstall everything.
I no longer want to be in that position again. There are times when I need my laptop computer to be up and running without issues within two hours. Reinstalling takes much longer than that.
For my non-system backups, I use overGrive, which connects to Google Drive. I prefer a client like that instead of connecting directly and transferring files back and forth. Since I use the regular Linux Mint, it includes some Ubuntu software. GNOME Online Accounts works with the Nemo file manager as well as Nautilus on Ubuntu. I prefer not to use it that way, either.
For my system incremental backups, I use Timeshift, which is included with Linux Mint. I don’t remember when the Linux Mint team took over from the original developer. Timeshift is designed to “roll back” to an earlier state when something goes wrong and is much faster than restoring a system image.
System Image Backups
There are two software projects I can use (I’ve tested both of them), but I only use one. That’s Rescuezilla, based on Clonezilla (which operates in a terminal window). I used Clonezilla years ago, on a Windows computer, and I had to be extremely careful with the device names. Rescuezilla is way easier.
The other software project is Foxclone. It works pretty much the same way as Rescuezilla. I run Rescuezilla from an old 16-gigabyte micro SD card (the one that came with my Raspberry Pi 400). It’s plugged into a USB flash drive adapter. The compressed files are stored on an external solid-state drive. I’ve never had to restore any system except Windows, and that was many years ago, before I started using Linux in any other way.
Computer Backups Should Be Easy
They are easy, if you use the right software and adhere to a schedule. Backups to cloud storage services, like Google Drive, should be automatic. Incremental backup software, like Timeshift, should also be automatic. Only system image backups have to be manually scheduled. Use a task manager, usually associated with calendar software, and you won’t forget to do it at least once a month.
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