Swapping backup media


I have been using urbackup and up to this point has worked great for me. I have been doing backups of a linux machine to a 256GB flashkey and after three months it has filled up. I put in a fresh formatted flash key and ever since urbackup has had constant backup problems. It seems like urbackup keeps trying to use the old backup information from the previous drive. I suspect the simplest way to solve this is to uninstall and reinstall urlbackup to try to reset everything.

Is there a way to safely change out backup media without urbackup having problems? I did not see anything in the docs describing how to do this. At the very least I want to do this so I can maintain offsite copies of my backups.



That wont work.

  • Urbackup will need the old data files for the incrementals, so if you remove them, you ll get errors on the new backups.
  • Sometime if it s missing a file it will recopy the file instead of linking against, but i would trust on that too much if you’re swapping the whole drive.
  • If you copied only the data dir, you re still missing indexes and config and stuff which is in program files.

So maybe install urbackup as well on the key,
do some backups (at least 2 times)
,put in the new key.
Reinstall urbackup over.
do some backups (at least 2 times)

put in the new old key
check of you can restore old backups (the 2 versions)

put in the new key.
check of you can restore old backups (the 2 versions)

Maybe you want something more like dar, but it’s kind of a pita to use (there s no good frontend, so it s all commandline).
It has been written as some kind of archiving tool, so you ll need to write scripts to get it working.

Maybe it s more simple to “outsource” urbackup and rent a 10€ server with a 1tb sorage https://www.online.net/fr/serveurs-dedies/start-2-s-sata.
Even if you filled 250GB in 3 months, the first backup is the most space expansive (maybe 10x more than the next backups), so 1tb should last more than a year.
You ll be able to use it for other stuff and you can use the internet mode on urbackup.
Urbackup client can use many local server and an internet server, each with different retention and backup frequency. (so local server can keep last 60 days, but online server last 60 sundays)

Crashplan exiles, since it s not free anymore do crossbackup with their family or friends that way.
So they each host a server on their home computer and do crossbackups.


Thanks for the detailed response. I think what I will try next is to build and install urbackup onto the flash drive itself to make a standalone iinstall. After the initial install, I could save the base image to initialize new flash drives.