Systemback: restore points on Ubuntu

systemback_compWe explored TimeShift in one of our earlier articles. We came across another backup tool that works similarly – Systemback. It too does a restore point based backup and can handle system files as well as user configuration files. Note that it is not a tool to backup videos, pictures or documents. A restore point can be created at any time and the application will list the time of the restore point creation for an easy rollback later. Features include:

  • Create restore points
  • Copy system from one partition to another
  • Create a new user, modify root password, modify hostname
  • Create a Live CD/DVD/USB from current system with or without user data
  • System repair, Grub2 repair with or without fstab
  • Upgrade Ubuntu to next release
  • Exclude certain files

Run the following commands to install Systemback on Ubuntu (12.04.x, 14.04.x or 14.10 at the time of writing):

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nemh/systemback
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install systemback

Webpage: Systemback

Timeshift: System Restore on Ubuntu

timeshift_compTimeshift is hell of a useful utility for Ubuntu users. There are so many times when you may have broken your system and wished there was a tool like System Restore on Windows (or Time Machine on Mac) to get back to a Restore Point or snapshot. Admittedly, this is indeed an area where Linux was lacking a really useful functionality. Timeshift has just filled in the gap! Capabilities:

  • Backs up only system files and settings
  • Take incremental backups of your system at regular intervals
  • Unmodified files are not backed up twice
  • Return to a past snapshot
  • Uses rsync and hard-links
  • Automatic boot snapshots 30 minutes after system starts
  • Runs at 30 minute intervals but takes snapshots only if required
  • Uses tags to save more disk space
  • System can be restored on the running system or from a live CD
  • Cross-distro restoration for Ubuntu family of distros
  • Minimal setup

To install on Ubuntu:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:teejee2008/ppa
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install timeshift

Webpage: Timeshift


Timeshift is available for BTRFS volumes now. To install on Ubuntu:

sudo apt-add-repository -y ppa:teejee2008/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install timeshift-btrfs