Brandon Rozek

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PhD Student @ RPI studying Automated Reasoning in AI and Linux Enthusiast.

Borg Backup

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Warning: This post has not been modified for over 2 years. For technical posts, make sure that it is still relevant.

Note: I switched to using Restic

I started using Borg Backup in order to efficiently and securely do my backups. I did some research before choosing this solution as I required three things:

  • Compression
  • Encryption
  • Deduplication

Each point is important on their own. Ideally I would be able to put this onto a cloud solution. Due to this I would want compression and deduplication to keep my costs down and encryption in order to maintain privacy.

Luckily Borg does all of these things and more! It’s also easily available on the AUR and the Ubuntu repositories.

Getting Started

This will be a short post just describing the basic usage of the tool. I haven’t fully implemented this tool yet so forgive me if this doesn’t match your exact use case. This is also a great way for me to document the basic commands for myself as well.

First to initialize a borg repo encrypted with a password at repolocation:

borg init --encryption=repokey repolocation

Then to create a backup in the repo with key backup1:

borg create --stats --progress --compression lzma repolocation::backup1 folderToBackup

You can actually replace the compression algorithm if wanted, here is a short description from their website:

  • lz4 (super fast, low compression)
  • zstd (wide range from high speed and low compression to high compression and lower speed)
  • zlib (medium speed and compression)
  • lzma (low speed, high compression)

To list what backups you have in the repo:

borg list repolocation

To mount and unmount the repository

borg mount repolocation mountlocation
borg umount mountlocation
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