ZFS on root backup

Joshua Isom jrisom at gmail.com
Mon Jul 11 16:01:12 UTC 2011

On 7/11/2011 5:59 AM, Matthew Seaman wrote:
> On 11/07/2011 11:20, Dick Hoogendijk wrote:
>> OK, so now my ZFS on root FreeBSD-8.2 system runs smoothly and I'm very
>> happy being able to have ZFS (coming from solaris11), but.. what is the
>> best strategy to back this fbsd system up. do I create various ZFS
>> backup filesystem streams or can I easely backup the zroot pool as a
>> whole? And if yes, how?
>> Grateful for all the help I can get in these matters.
> What ZFS does get you in terms of backups are two things:
>     1) Really easy and unlimited amounts of snap-shotting.  As well as
>        making it really simple to get a coherent point-in-time backup of
>        an active filesystem, they also give you a really simple 'undo'
>        type functionality, so you can unwind accidental deletions and
>        other user mistakes.
>     2) ZFS import and export -- again, exploiting the snap-shotting
>        capability, this makes it pretty easy to create a duplicate of
>        your filesystem onto another host, and to update the duplicate in
>        a very efficient way.
> 	Cheers,
> 	Matthew
> [*] As a number of companies found out to their cost, 'in the basement
> of the other tower' was not sufficiently off-site to be effective.

I recently just converted my system from raid0 to raid1, using zfs, and 
because of mountpoints and other quirks you could end up having trouble 
with zfs send and receive.  If you're planning on backing up the whole 
pool, then using a backup drive, and virtualbox with the disk image on 
the backup drive to backup the pool might be easiest after you get 
networking working.  If you're not concerned about the whole pool, just 
just create filesystems for what you want to save and use those.  You 
could just use the zfs send command and not recreate the filesystem, but 
it's not recommended until if and when the data stream is standardized. 
  It'll work until Oracle breaks it.

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