backing up our data is one of the healthiest ways to preserve the integrity of our system. Therefore, today you will learn How to Backup and Restore Files Using Borg in Linux. This application is great and with it, our files will be safe from any danger.
Introducing to Borg
Borg is an open-source application that allows you to backup your data using deduplicating. This allows the application to create incremental backups. This means that only new files or files that have been modified are stored in the new backups.
This deduplicating system makes Borg the ideal tool to create backups daily since the size of the backups will increase according to the changes.
Borg is not a new application but has been on the market for a long time. Its use is through the terminal so its use may scare more than one, but the reality is that it is quite simple.
Another of the main advantages of Borg is that it is cross-platform so we can install it on almost any system. So we do not have to worry about the installation on Linux.
So, let’s get started.
Install Borg in Linux
Borg is present in the official repositories of all major Linux distributions. So, open a terminal and run the command indicated for your distro
For Debian, Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and derivatives of these distributions run
sudo apt install borgbackup
If you are using Arch Linux, Manjaro, or other derivatives
sudo pacman -S borg
But if you use RHEL, Fedora, CentOS, and derivates
sudo dnf install borgbackup
Finally, in the case of OpenSUSE
sudo zypper in borgbackup
As you can see the installation is quite simple and will help us with the process.
How to Backup and Restore Files Using Borg in Linux
Backup files with Borg
First of all, we have to make a new repository to create the backup file.
To create the new repository then run the following command line
sudo borg init --encryption=repokey /home/user/repository
When you run the above command, you will be prompted for a passphrase, which is like a password, which you must remember.
The name and location of the repository can be chosen by you without any problem. Borg supports several types of encryption in this case we chose
repokey but you can also use
Making the backup file
With the repository created, you then have to start backing up the folder you want. In this case, I will use the
/home/user/Pictures directory as an example.
Borg uses the concept of Files to identify each backup we make. This “File” is used to keep track of the backup and should be given an explicit name to avoid confusion.
sudo borg create /home/user/repository::first-backup /home/user/Pictures
As soon as you start the command you will be prompted for the passphrase.
Now a new file named
first-backup will be created.
By default, Borg uses the
lz4 cipher but you can use
none. In the case of the first two, we have to specify a number from 0 to 9 indicating the compression level.
An example would be
sudo borg create --compression zlib,8 /home/user/repository::first-backup /home/user/Pictures
So we would be using the
zlib cipher with level 8 compression. Almost the maximum.
And so on you have to create the backup using these files. For example, if in several days you make a backup again you have to run again the command
sudo borg create but specifying another name for the file.
To list all the “files” in a repository run
sudo borg list /home/user/repository
So, to list the contents of one of these files
sudo borg list /home/user/repository::[file-name]
Restoring files with Borg in Linux
To restore a backup with Borg you have to use the
extract command in the directory where you want the restore to be done.
Let’s suppose we want to restore the backup we just made in the directory
sudo borg extract /home/user/repository::first-backup
For this to work, you need to have access to the
first-backup file and the
Other borg command options
If you want to delete a backup “file” then you have to use the
delete command and specify the file. For example
sudo borg delete /home/user/repository::first-backup
You can also rename it
sudo borg reaname /home/user/repository::first-backup new-first-backup
Another important aspect is that you can mount the backup file and verify it
borg mount /home/user/repository::first-backup /path/to/mount/the/backup
You can then browse the mounted folder and verify your files.
To unmount it
borg umount /path/to/mount/the/backup
So you can use Borg.
Borg is a great tool for our backups. It uses an interesting technology that will allow us to take full advantage and security of our directories.
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