After all the good suggestions by several people from
this list, I think  we will go with dump and restore. I used to
use dump around ten years ago when our departmental Unix work
station was a Sun and I don't ever remember it letting us down,
even after something dreadful happened to the main drive and I
had to rebuild it.

        There turns out to be a dump package for Linux which
should give us the coverage we were looking for.

        The scripts I set up for doing backups are much smaller
and easier to maintain with dump with the idea being that a
shell script determines whether this is week 1 through 5 in a
given month. The first day of that week is Level 0 followed by 6
more levels until we start another week such that the path to a
backup looks like 02-1/systemname/systemname_0 systemname_1 and
so forth.

        The defaults appear to be slightly different between the
bsd dump and Linux's dump, but it wasn't difficult to get both
to dump one volume containing all the inodes to a file which is
actually a named pipe on the backup server.

        Many thanks to all.

Martin McCormick
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