Using tar to prepare for an emergency


Article from Issue 70/2006

Use a tarball to restore your system in next to no time – without a complete re-install.

Linux has no end of options for backing up data, however, a one-to-one copy will always use the same amount of space as the hard disk partition. You can save space by bundling the backup data into a compressed archive. Swiss Army Knife tar is a die-hard tool from the early days of Unix, and a GNU variant of tar is included with any Linux distribution. The program, which was originally developed as a “tape archiver,” has been continually extended over the years. Its original task of storing data on tape is just one of many tasks tar handles today.

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