Thorough distributed backup/sync strategy

Matthew Monaco dgbaley27 at
Wed Oct 29 05:43:36 GMT 2008

Does anyone have a good distributed backup strategy?  I've been revising
mine for a year or so now and always realize there's some hole or
another in it.  I get the feeling to do it exactly the way I want it
needs to be complex, but I'm looking for something elegant.

My data consists of some of these representative folders:


And these devices:

My main (linux) computer
A share on a windows computer
An ext3 external disk attached to my main computer
A remote linux computer (ssh)
And some usb flash drives

At the root of each device should be an up-to-date copy of my data.  But
for some devices like the usb sticks, I don't want to include music.

I'd like to be able to take advantage of hardlinks on the devices that
support them to have snapshots.

Each device should have a folder called SNAPSHOTS (or something) with a
list of folders (SNAPSHOTS/$date) containing either snapshots on devices
that support links and backup data on devices that don't.

For devices that don't support hardlinks I'd like to keep backups of
some data but not others.

For devices like the usb sticks I'd like to avoid keeping up backups of
some data I'd otherwise want to backup.

For data like Music, I don't want to make deletions, from the large
devices like the external drive.

For data like my firefox profile I'd like to have a full backup in each
of the SNAPSHOT/$date directory on devices without hardlinks.  But I
don't want the Cache folder to show up in any of these.

I'm sure there's more but I'm tired (and frustrated) right now.

Thanks for your suggestions!


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