Data on today s personal computers is fragile. Administrators are constantly worried about viruses that might affect data on a network. Events such as cracker attacks, power surges, mechanical failures, magnetic fields, and natural disasters can destroy some or all of the data on your hard drives .
The measures you take to back up your system depend on your situation. Backing up data for multiple users on multiple computers requires more care. To help recover from a disaster at your facility, you may choose to store data at a different site.
Several different types of backup media are available. You can back up critical data on CDs, or you can back up entire computers on one or more tape drives. Recordable DVDs are quickly becoming a viable alternative to tape drives. Alternatively, removable and external hard drives have the capacity and can easily be stored in remote locations.
On larger networks, backups to a central server may be an option. As an administrator, you may want one location to back up files from all servers on your network. As a workstation or desktop user , you may find it convenient to have a central backup server maintained by a responsible Linux administrator.
Depending on your backup mode and media, several backup commands are available to you, such as tar , cpio , dump , and restore . Alternatively, a properly configured Redundant Array of Independent or Inexpensive Disks (RAID) can also back up your data on other hard drives. In some cases, a RAID drive can be removed and stored in a secure remote location. This chapter covers the following topics:
Exploring backup concepts
Selecting your media
Using backup and restore commands