We have a small network with a Ubuntu server in the middle and Ubuntu notebooks around. The notebooks all use eCryptfs to encrypt the whole home directory of users. Usually, there are two or more users per notebook. The backup procedure stays inside the network, so we are fine with transfering the files unencrypted to the server. We'd like to go with an
rsync based solution, but are fine with others, too.
We ran into difficulties when trying to backup the home directories of the notebooks, that brought us major headaches. It boils down to this:
If user A is logged in, the home directory is decrypted, and the encrypted files in
/home/.ecryptfs/Aare locked against reading from other processes (which is a good thing)
If user B is not logged in, his home directory is not decrypted, there are only the encrypted files in
We need to have a backup script, that can run, while user A is logged in (because she starts it manually in our case) and user B may or may not be logged in (usually not).
Now the question is: What should we backup? If we go for the encrypted data, the stuff of user A cannot be backed up. Decrypted data means on the other hand, that user B must be logged in, too. And mixing both leads to a fun time, when it comes to restoring something.
Are there perhaps other solutions to this problem, that we missed?