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Backup of hd using DD. - FreeBSD

Hello list. I had an idea about using a tool similar to dd(1) take backup's of entire disks. Here's my situation: My father has an old PII running Win98 (Don't ask don't tell... he's using very old financial software ;). Needless to say the thing keeps getting borked and reinstall of his entire setup is quite frustrating. Now I was wondering if I could simply set the thing up with all the programs that he needs + drivers + anti viral &c but minus the financial software ofcourse and the rip the disk out of the machine put in my ...

  1. #1

    Default Backup of hd using DD.

    Hello list.

    I had an idea about using a tool similar to dd(1) take backup's of
    entire disks.

    Here's my situation:
    My father has an old PII running Win98 (Don't ask don't tell... he's
    using very old financial software ;). Needless to say the thing keeps
    getting borked and reinstall of his entire setup is quite frustrating.

    Now I was wondering if I could simply set the thing up with all the
    programs that he needs + drivers + anti viral &c but minus the financial
    software ofcourse and the rip the disk out of the machine put in my
    workstation make an image of it and keep it safe and when the machine
    goes borked I could simply rip the disk out again put it in my machine
    and dd the image back onto the disk and restoring the "good-image" setup
    (then I would restore his financial stuff with the most recent backup
    (wich he keeps on a zip disk).

    Now my questions are:
    1) When I dd the image back onto the disk:
    What about the 'free' hd space ?
    What about the bootloader for Win98 ?
    The registry &c ... ?

    2) How do I make an image of the entire disk using dd(1) ?
    Or should I use some other software ?

    Forgive me if this is asked & answered or if I could have found this
    using google (so far nothing of use has showed up in my querys.).

    A pointer in the right direction would be greatly appricated.

    --
    Thordur I. <is>
    FreeBSD - Unix the way *I* like it.
    A man can do as he will, but not will as he will.
    Thordur Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: Backup of hd using DD.

    On Wed, Mar 09, 2005 at 05:13:30PM +0000, Thordur I. Bjornsson wrote: 

    The bootloader, registry and all that are on the hard disk, so if you make an
    image of the whole thing it'll all be preserved. The only thing I can think
    of that you won't be backing up is your BIOS configuration, but that's
    probably OK.

    As for free space... if you've got an 80GB hard disk and you image the whole
    disk, you'll get an 80GB image, no matter how much free space was on it. If
    you want a more efficient way of doing things, I suppose you could put the
    "base system" on a separate small slice, and just backup that slice...
    but then you have to be careful to include the bootloader as well, which might
    not be stored inside any slice.
     

    dd if=/dev/{disk to backup} of=/path/to/new/image/file

    where {disk to backup} is something like /dev/ad0 (for full disk) or
    /dev/ad0s1 for slice 1, and /path/to/new/image/file is where you want to put
    the image.

    Use the option "bs={some big number}" to dd to make it a faster (man dd for
    more info).
     
    james.cook@utoronto.ca Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: Backup of hd using DD.



    ca wrote:
     
    >
    >The bootloader, registry and all that are on the hard disk, so if you make an
    >image of the whole thing it'll all be preserved. The only thing I can think
    >of that you won't be backing up is your BIOS configuration, but that's
    >probably OK.
    >
    >As for free space... if you've got an 80GB hard disk and you image the whole
    >disk, you'll get an 80GB image, no matter how much free space was on it. If
    >you want a more efficient way of doing things, I suppose you could put the
    >"base system" on a separate small slice, and just backup that slice...
    >but then you have to be careful to include the bootloader as well, which might
    >not be stored inside any slice.
    >
    >[/ref]
    If you zero the disk before you do the initial install of Win 98 (dd
    if=/dev/zero of=/dev/(disk to zero) then all the freespace will be zero
    blocks which will compress really well.
     
    >
    >dd if=/dev/{disk to backup} of=/path/to/new/image/file
    >
    >where {disk to backup} is something like /dev/ad0 (for full disk) or
    >/dev/ad0s1 for slice 1, and /path/to/new/image/file is where you want to put
    >the image.
    >
    >Use the option "bs={some big number}" to dd to make it a faster (man dd for
    >more info).
    >
    >[/ref]

    Make sure you use the raw disk device (/dev/adX) not a partition (/dev/adXsY) so that you get the bootloader.


    John

    John Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: Backup of hd using DD.

    On Wednesday 09 March 2005 18:02, John Pettitt wrote: [/ref][/ref]
    I try to avoid taking machines of that age to bits, in case it is too much for
    them and they fail. Could you send the image across a network or something? [/ref][/ref]
    Free space compresses very well when its all zeros 
    > >
    > >The bootloader, registry and all that are on the hard disk, so if you make
    > > an image of the whole thing it'll all be preserved. The only thing I can
    > > think of that you won't be backing up is your BIOS configuration, but
    > > that's probably OK.
    > >
    > >As for free space... if you've got an 80GB hard disk and you image the
    > > whole disk, you'll get an 80GB image, no matter how much free space was
    > > on it. If you want a more efficient way of doing things, I suppose you
    > > could put the "base system" on a separate small slice, and just backup
    > > that slice... but then you have to be careful to include the bootloader
    > > as well, which might not be stored inside any slice.[/ref]
    >
    > If you zero the disk before you do the initial install of Win 98 (dd
    > if=/dev/zero of=/dev/(disk to zero) then all the freespace will be zero
    > blocks which will compress really well.

    > >
    > >dd if=/dev/{disk to backup} of=/path/to/new/image/file
    > >
    > >where {disk to backup} is something like /dev/ad0 (for full disk) or
    > >/dev/ad0s1 for slice 1, and /path/to/new/image/file is where you want to
    > > put the image.
    > >
    > >Use the option "bs={some big number}" to dd to make it a faster (man dd
    > > for more info).[/ref][/ref]
    I find that too big a number slows things down a bit. I use 128K with my USB
    drive, perhaps this is a point to start guessing from. I expect a bigger
    number will work better as a hard drive will be faster than USB. 

    --
    /Xian

    "Doing a job RIGHT the first time gets the job done. Doing the job WRONG
    fourteen times gives you job security"
    unknown author
    Xian Guest

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