I need to find a way to transfer the daily backup folder of my Debian server to a Windows server weekly. What would be the easiest and most stable way to achieve this? Would I definitely need a Samba installation on my Debian server?


MS-Windows shared folder: You can share data between windows and linux system for such use : For example you would like to access MS-Windows share called //windowsserver/sharename by mounting to /mnt/win directory under Linux system. So execute these commands:

mkdir -p /mnt/win
mount -t smbfs -o username=winntuser,password=mypassword //windowsserver/sharename /mnt/win
Next create the password file /etc/sambapasswords:

cat > /etc/sambapasswords 
username = winntuser
password = mypassword
make sure that only root have access to it

chown root:root /etc/sambapasswords
chmod 600 /etc/sambapasswords
Add an entry to your /etc/fstab:

//windowserver/share /mnt/win smbfs
auto,gid=users,fmask=0664,dmask=0775,iocharset=iso8859-15, credentials=/etc/sambapasswords 0 0
Append an entry to your crontab like this, if you need to do a backup daily at 1AM:

0 1 * * * cp /path/to/yourbackup /mnt/win 
FTP solution: you may install a ftp server on your windows machine. filezilla server do perfectly the job. setup a ftp folder and an account with all required privileges. Later setup a file named ~/.netrc with this content:

machine windowserver
login ftpuser
password ftppassword
make sure that only root have access to it:

chown root:root ~/.netrc
chmod 600 ~/.netrc
Append to your backup script this lines that will transfer your backup file remotely to your ftp server:

ftp <<EOF
open windowserver
cd ${remote_path}
put ${filename}
Finally add your backup script to your crontab like what we did for first solution.


You can also do this with rsync. Set up a rsync server at the Linux machine, and use a rsync client at the Windows machine to get the files.

With rsync, you will be able to resume interrupted transfers


Here is my script in order to communicate with our windowser server. You need to add a share (ie Samba share) on the windows box :

# Script d'envoi des archives 

cd /mount directory
mount -t cifs //SMB-SHARE share name/ -o username=USER,password=PASSWORD,dir_mode=0777,file_mode=0777

umount share
  • I do almost exactly the same thing as Kronick describes for an hourly copy from a Linux to a Windows machine. Sep 16 '09 at 11:19
  • This is the best, most easy, and most stable way to do this. No servers to set up - just make sure the samba client is installed on the Linux machine, which is probably already is. Sep 16 '09 at 13:01

Another way will be to actually pull the needed files away from the Linux server from the Windows server, using pscp (from the putty package)

  • And like Nik says above, if you use key authentication, you can script it. Sep 16 '09 at 14:12

You could setup freeSSHd on the Windows server and script a secure copy from the Debian server.
Also consider setting up public key authentication for easier scripting.

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