Sync different copies of a filesystem

Matthias Schniedermeyer ms at
Thu May 13 14:33:23 MDT 2010

On 13.05.2010 13:24, N. Yaakov Ziskind wrote:
> I have 5 or 6 :-( different copies of a filesystem on various Linux
> boxen, all backups taken at different times, with different exclusions,
> and squirreled away. Now's the time to clean up my attic. I'd like to
> merge them all into one big filesystem. When there are different copies
> of the same files, I'd like to keep the newest; I don't know what else
> to do. My plan (assuming I'm going to retain 'path0' as the surviving
> filesystem) goes like this:
> rsync -azPv -u path-to-system-1 path0
> rsync -azPv -u path-to-system-2 path0
> rsync -azPv -u path-to-system-3 path0
> rsync -azPv -u path-to-system-4 path0
> rsync -azPv -u path-to-system-5 path0
> and then rm -rf "path-to-system-?", and hope for the best.
> What kind of disaster can I look forward to with this approach, and is
> there a better one?

It depends on WHAT and HOW MUCH.

When i had the same situation a few years back for my /usr/local/bin i 
choose a "master" machine and made that directory into a subversion 
repository and then on each of the other 2 machines i decided 
file-by-file what what was the "right(tm)" version to commit, revert, 
intergrate or delete.

For Backup-Purposes you could keep the backups and use a filedup-utility 
to hardlink identical files to reduce the space needed. That what you 
can at least always look back. And delete is a few years later. ;-)

Bis denn

Real Programmers consider "what you see is what you get" to be just as 
bad a concept in Text Editors as it is in women. No, the Real Programmer
wants a "you asked for it, you got it" text editor -- complicated, 
cryptic, powerful, unforgiving, dangerous.

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