On Wed, May 09, 2007 at 06:10:53PM -0700, L Goodwin wrote:
> Here's another round of dumb questions for ya:
> Can USB jump drives be used to back-up a Samba share?
> If so, what do I need to do to prepare the USB drive
> to accept files? 
> Since I don't really need to compress or encrypt, I
> was thinking about simply copying the entire directory
> tree using the cp command, instead of using dump, tar,
> cpio.

If you don't want to save multiple versions of the same tree (from
different dates), you could use rsync. It might be a lot quicker than cp
because it skips files that haven't changed since the last backup.

But unless your collection of files is almost as large as the USB drive,
I would keep saving backups of different dates (with tar & gzip) until
you run out of space and have to start deleting older backups.

> Will this work, and is it a "good idea"?

> The filesystem to be backed up is a single common UFS
> shared via Samba. All PC users have access to the same
> set of files (no user-specific directories). The files
> to be backed up are Word, Excel, PDF, etc.
> I don't want to buy the drives until I know if it will
> work and how to do it. Do I need to UFS format the
> drives? I assume the drive will have to be mounted
> like any other drive...

Reformatting as UFS seems a good idea. Most drives come with a FAT32
filesystem, which has to use large clusters (16 or 32k) on bigger
drives. This can waste a lot of space if you're backing up lots of small
files. Have a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File_Allocation_Table#FAT32

Additionally, you'll have to recompile the kernel to support FAT32
filesystems >128GB, IIRC.

R.F.Smith                                   http://www.xs4all.nl/~rsmith/
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