Guides for ZFS Full backup to NFS drive and restore from NFS drive

Polytropon freebsd at
Sat Oct 5 08:44:25 UTC 2019

On Fri, 4 Oct 2019 18:38:49 -0400, Kurt Hackenberg wrote:
> On 2019-10-04 17:20, Alejandro Imass wrote:
> > Hi there FreeBSD folk!
> > 
> > Are there any easy to follow guides to completely backup a FreeBSD system
> > to an NFS drive and then restore the complete system from the backup in the
> > NFS drive?
> > 
> > I don't have much NFS expertise but it shouldn't be that complicated.
> > 
> > I found this guide but not exactly what I'm looking for:
> > 
> >
> > 
> > Is there a utility or something to make this process less painful?
> Do you mean to recreate the file tree on the NFS server, by copying each 
> FreeBSD file to an NFS file? That might not work perfectly.

The initial question doesn't seem to sound like that was the

> I believe NFS doesn't implement everything the FreeBSD filesystem does. 
> It might not include sparse files, special files, extended file metadata 
> (access control, "flags")...
> If you use ZFS, you probably should use its backup/restore mechanisms, 
> as in that article. For good results, it probably does have to be that 
> complicated.

Definitely. It is possible (and probably the way to go in this
scenario) to write the "zfs send" result to a file that is accessible
via NFS, first for backup, then have a rescue system handy (for
example, a FreeBSD live system CD, DVD, or USB stick) to boot
the system from again, make any neccessary preparations, and
then run "zfs receive" with the previously mentioned file via NFS
as source. So basically it's what you do with traditional dump
and restore via _files_ stored somewhere else on the network,
but with ZFS tools. :-)

Or did I misunderstand the question?

> If you don't use ZFS, then I suggest that you look at the programs 
> "dump" and "restore". They have man pages. The FreeBSD Handbook also has 
> some information about backup/restore for non-ZFS:

Additional valuable information here:

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list