Backup + Amazon S3 = Love

It’s about one year ago that I started thinking a new way to manage, think and perform backups. After wasting money in hard drivers USB and useless network sharing devices, I decided to open a new account of Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service).

If I have to describe in three worlds my first impressions, I would say: easy, cheap, clear.
Easy
because you need 10 minutes to open a new account, cheap because to the rate are low for a personal home needs (you might spend a lot if you have to move lot of data, like 100/1000 Gb), clear because the documentation is well done and is also possible to have a prediction of how much you are going to spend per month.

I’ve been using it since April, I’ve also found a nice backup software that support as destination location Amazon, already installed and integrated in GNOME: Déja dup. I made a backup few time only, moving from 40 to 60 Gb and getting a bill around 0.35€.
From May I will schedule weekly jobs and I will give you an update of how much I’m going to spend.

With Déja dup is possible, using GNOME, to retrieve the version of that file based on the date.

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Quick and dirty Backup

After a long time I publish my backup (ultra sophisticated) technology :P

I have a 80 Gb USB external hard drive and I want to copy everything inside my home directory (files, directory, hidden files, and so on), so I started using unison but it didn’t permit to exclude directories.

IMPORTANT:You MUST stay on your ~.

[lfoppiano@sboing ~]$ rsync -av --delete --exclude='Videos/*' --exclude='Music/*' --delete-excluded --progress . /media/Backup/sboing/home/lfoppiano/

My Hard drive directory is divided as /media/backup/host/directory/whatever/subwhatever

If you have suggestion, tell me, if will be useful I will update this post ;-)

GmailFS installing and configuration (Fedora 7)

Disclaimer: Don’t trust gmail storage disk. Is possibile to lose all store data or get your account blocked (if you copy too much data, eg 100mb). Use it only to have fun or testing. If you wanna do backup, don’t store sensible data (is Google..remember) or be sure to have another backup.

GmailFS is a virtual filesystem (developed by Richard Jones) that permit you to mount your gmail box as an external hard drive. Is usefull for small backups similar to NFS.
Let’s start to install and configure GmailFS. I suppose here that you have a gmail address (if not, go here).

Packages need to be installed:
- python 2.3
- fuse
- libgmail (you can found here packaged by Ville SkyttĂ)
- fuse python bind (watch my (temporary) repository)
- gmailfs (watch my (temporary) repository)

After downloaded and installed all my packets, if your pc don’t crash, we can go ahead and configure gmailfs.

Add a line about gmailfs to your /etc/fstab as explain in the official project site: usr/local/bin/gmailfs.py /path/of/mount/point gmailfs noauto,user 0 0

If you want to access to your storage gmail disk with root user, you have to modify the configuration file /etc/gmailfs.conf adding username, password and disk name (disk name must be something difficult to guess to avoid someone can mess up your email).

To mount, simply use (as root):
mount /mnt/path/of/mount/point

If something go wrong, you can find log files in ~/gmailfs.log. Remember also if you need to use proxy configuration, you need appropriate ssl packages (eg. pythong-openssl) to use it.

To mount partition as normal user, you need to create a file similar to /etc/gmailfs.conf in your home and call it .gmailf (~/.gmailfs).
After that, you have to modify permission of mount point:
chown root:fuse /mnt/path/of/mount/point
chmod 775 /mnt/path/of/mount/point

Now you need to add your user to fuse group (I used administrator panel of GNOME). After that exit and log-in again, you should be able to mount fuse partition, using:

mount /mnt/path/of/mount/point

For information, correction, error and so on….use comments :-P

Update 01/10/2007@00:29  I have problems to unmount device from normal users. I get this error “unmount: /mnt/backup mount disagrees with the fstab”.

This, because when mtab is written, is different from fstab. I try to modify manually mtab but mtab change when a new partition is added, so is better to use root to unmount.