Poster of Linux kernelThe best gift for a Linux geek


Section: Maintenance Commands (8)
Local index Up

BSD mandoc


pdumpfs - A daily backup system similar to Plan9's dumpfs  


src-dir dest-dir [dest-basename]  


is a simple daily backup system written in Ruby ( ruby(1)) which is similar to Plan9's dumpfs that preserves every daily snapshot.

Back up your home directory with , and you can retrieve any past day's snapshot of any file.

constructs each day's snapshot in the directory named YYYY/MM/DD under the destination directory. All source files are copied to the snapshot directory for the first time, and on and after the second time, copies only updated or newly created files and stores unchanged files as hard links to the files of the previous day's snapshot to save disk space.  


-e, --exclude=PATTERN

Exclude files or directories matching PATTERN.

-s, --exclude-by-size=SIZE

Exclude files larger than SIZE from backup.

-w, --exclude-by-glob=GLOB

Exclude files matching GLOB from backup.

-l, --log-file=FILE

Write a logfile to FILE.

-v, --version

Show the program version and exit.

-q, --quiet

Suppress all normal output.

-n, --dry-run

Don't actuall run any commands.

-h, --help

Show help message.

The latest version of is always available at  


To backup your home directory /home/yourname to /backup run the following command.

pdumpfs /home/yourname /backup >/backup/log 2>/backup/error-log

On and after the second day, it is a good idea to invoke the backup command with cron(8) daemon. Adding the following line to your crontab file allows you to back up your home directory at 5 a.m. everyday.

00 05 * * * pdumpfs /home/yourname /backup >/backup/log 2>/backup/error-log

If the backup system works well, you can retrieve any given day's file with a file name like /backup/2001/02/19/yourname/ . .  


can only handle normal files, directories, and symbolic links.

may not work on systems other than UNIX because utilizes hard links.

is not suited for a directory containing large files which are updated frequently.

If more than 31 day absence occurs, incremental backup would not be
performed. So, back up your files on a daily basis.

, you can safely remove unnecessary files because the past files can be retrieved at any time. However, you must not rely too much on . It may have serious bugs.



If the total disk usage increases by 10 MB everyday, about 4 GB disk
space will be consumed every year. It would not matter so much considering the recent evolution of computer resources.

Back up your files to a physically separated device.

On some systems, files can be made immutable.

To make all files in /backup immutable on Linux, run the following command as root:

chattr -R +i /backup

On BSD 4.4 derived systems, run the following command as root:

chflags -R schg /backup

These commands will keep you from accidentally removing your backup files with rm -rf



and the HTML document were written by An Satoru Takabayashi Aq .

This manual page was translated from the HTML document by An Hiroyuki Shimada Aq , and reformatted by An Akinori MUSHA Aq .  


chattr(1), chflags(1), crontab(5), cron(8)




This document was created by man2html, using the manual pages.
Time: 22:02:08 GMT, April 16, 2011