Is there a howto/tutorial on backups/rsync that covers the use of hard and soft links?

Kevin Korb kmk at
Tue Jan 22 10:44:34 MST 2013

Hash: SHA1

Here is one I wrote up for a LUG presentation that is specifically
about doing it yourself:

On 01/22/13 02:31, Joe wrote:
> There have been a lot of posts on the list lately about issues with
> hard links.  It has been very interesting, but I don't understand
> it very thoroughly.  I haven't used hard links for anything yet.
> I've used symlinks - not for backups, of course - and have seen
> them get broken or deleted in backups.
> Is there a tutorial anywhere that will explain how this works
> (assuming that the reader understands the basic concepts of backups
> and knows how to program, but doesn't really understand how to use
> links to create things like incremental or differential backups)?
> It seems like there are a lot of fine points to consider, some of
> which can really bite you if you don't take them into account.
> I'm working on my own personal backup system using bash and rsync.
> When it's done it will be pretty good, but it would be *much*
> better if I rewrote it to have more backup versions using hard
> links to save space.
> I am writing my own because (aside from learning a lot) I have only
> seen two types of backup utilities - those that are very simplistic
> and won't let me do what I want and those which are enterprise
> level and I can't figure out how to get them to do anything without
> extensive study.  (I did experiment with areca (I think it uses
> rsync libraries under the hood) which would probably do everything
> I want, but I got stuck too many times and couldn't get enough
> support on their forum to keep going.)
> TIA Joe

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