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[#] Thu Apr 15 2021 15:09:30 EDT from ParanoidDelusions

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Thanks for all of the suggestions. I'll probably end up implementing one of these solutions. 

[#] Thu Apr 15 2021 15:47:46 EDT from IGnatius T Foobar

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I put all of my nightly backup jobs in /etc/cron.daily and allow them to run as root. <shrug>

rsync is definitely the correct tool, but I prefer to rsync from a snapshot rather than from the live data itself. This of course assumes you are using a filesystem that supports snapshots (I use btrfs).

My backup script, which runs on the source system, looks something like this:

1. Create a snapshot name that contains the day of the week (e.g. "Thursday")
2. If a snapshot by that name already exists, delete it.
3. Create a snapshot of the current live data using that name.
4. rsync the snapshot to the remote copy (using options -a and --delete)

This gives me a week of local "thin" backups to protect against mistakes, and an off-host backup to protect against catastrophic hardware failure.

I can share the script source if anyone is interested.

I also have another one somewhere that only keeps the snapshot around for the duration of the backup, and then we rotate the backups on the destination side.

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