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I had a similar question a few months ago

Right now i have been using Norton Ghost but i notice if i move large files (100mb+) it will make another copy of it. It eats up gbs like crazy, i need something else. Do you guys have any suggestions?

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6 Answers 6

Backuppc might be your answer. --

From the doc:

Identical Files

BackupPC pools identical files using hardlinks. By ``identical files'' we mean files with identical contents, not necessary the same permissions, ownership or modification time. Two files might have different permissions, ownership, or modification time but will still be pooled whenever the contents are identical. This is possible since BackupPC stores the file meta-data (permissions, ownership, and modification time) separately from the file contents.

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If you use backup software that uses Single-instance storage such as Windows Home Server or Danz Retrocspect (now EMC Retrospect) it shouldn't matter f you move your files around or even duplicates them, since the backup software will identify identical files and only store one copy of them.

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Was just researching the same solution, I ran across Acronis Backup which appears to have plugin to do this but haven't yet had a chance to test this out.

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Obviously this may not suit you as it involves certain assumptions and compromises, but one possible way of doing this is:

  • store your files in an image file, mounted as a loopback device (I use qcow2)
  • snapshot the image file (eg with VSS, LVM etc) and use rsync or equivalent to transfer

I do this to keep bandwidth low for off-site backups - I then use rsnapshot on the contents of the image file at the remote site as I am not concerned about bandwidth there.

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For small text files you can use git. Don't know how it works with large files (100mb+).

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It works quite nicely with large binary files too, provided enough bandwidth, but it is likely to have the same problem because it also handles file moves as though they were adds and deletes, while storing history. – Falcon Momot Sep 17 '13 at 5:54

How about using rsync for this (or a Windows equivalent)? If you use the --delete option, it will automagically remove files that are missing due to renames/deletes.

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...and if you'll occasionally delete some important file it will be deleted on backup as well. – rvs Mar 27 '12 at 10:28

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