using rsync to backup windows workstations

Robert Scholten r.scholten at
Wed Nov 14 22:27:38 EST 2001

Hi David, et al,

Cygwin is terrific, and appreciated by many, myself included.  However, if
all you want is rsync, cygwin is mighty cumbersome.  My version of rsync
required just a few files, which easily fit on a floppy, and all of which
went into a single directory on the destination machine.  This was
appreciated by many of my colleagues that just wanted their machine backed
up efficiently.

While I appreciate the GPL, I don't think it makes much sense in this
case.  Why provide source to compile your own cygwin when it's publically
available in many places already?  Likewise for rsync.  Who wants to
compile their own cygwin DLL anyway?  I didn't change the source, just
packaged the binaries to make life easier for people that don't want to
know the gritty details of cygwin and compiling rsync and don't want to go
hunting all over the web to find the cygwin DLL, rsync binary, ssh binary,
and a couple of documentation files.

It all seems reminiscent of the heavy hand of Bill Gates, under the guise
of open source.

On Wed, 14 Nov 2001, David Starks-Browning wrote:

> On Wednesday 14 Nov 01, Robert Scholten writes:
> > For some help in getting started, see:
> >
> >
> > Unfortunately an irritating person at Redhat/cygwin insisted I remove
> > my windoze binaries because I wasn't able to provide full source for
> > cygwin and rsync.
> It's not always a pleasant job to enforce the GPL.  But it's there for a reason.
> > So here are some comments I send people that query me:
> >
> > a) rsync binaries for win32/cygwin are now available from the binaries
> >    section of the rsync web pages, maintained by someone at redhat I think
> > b) the version attached is so old that you really shouldn't attempt to use  it.
> >    Get the latest CVS version and add Wayne Davison's patches (see
> >    mailing list archives), in particular for use with Windoze systems,
> >    then compile it yourself with cygwin
> > c) it's easy to compile under cygwin, and cygwin is easy to install, so I
> >    strongly recommend doing that
> > d) also install openssh which compiles cleanly under cygwin and is much
> >    more reliable than the ssh that is attached here
> Both Robert and even Lapo fail to mention that a standard Cygwin
> installation already *includes* a working version of rsync!  Just
> install Cygwin from <> and you're done.  (It also
> already includes OpenSSH!)
> In fact Lapo is too modest, he's doing a fine enough job.  The rsync
> shipped with Cygwin *does work*.  I would go a bit further and
> publicly thank Lapo for his efforts.  Cygwin users are very well
> served to have rsync distributed by default.
> Currently, Cygwin's "setup" program is deficient in that you have no
> guidance of which packages to install to get a working "rsync-only"
> installation, if all you want is rsync.  At the moment, it's "get
> everything, or you're on your own."  That will change in the very near
> future.
> Hope this helps.
> Regards,
> David
> (Cygwin FAQ maintainer)

Robert Scholten                   Tel:   +61 3 8344 5457  Mob: 0412 834 196
School of Physics                 Fax:   +61 3 9347 4783
University of Melbourne           email: r.scholten at
Victoria 3010  AUSTRALIA

More information about the rsync mailing list