[Box Backup] Samba and Boxbackup

Torsten Boob boxbackup at fluffy.co.uk
Thu Feb 1 10:12:48 GMT 2007

Hi Chris,

thanks you for the detailed answer.

On Wed, 31 Jan 2007 18:24:41 +0000 (GMT)
Chris Wilson <chris at qwirx.com> wrote:

> Hi Torsten,
> On Wed, 31 Jan 2007, Torsten Boob wrote:
> >>> I dont want to install boxbackup on every Computer, especially not
> >>> on the Windows machines. So i want to have one Boxbackup Client
> >>> that mounts the Directories from the Workstations and back it up.  
> >>
> >> This isn't a mode Box Backup is designed to support, although it is
> >> one which will be supported in the next version.  
> >
> > You wrote, that the next version will support this mode. Does anybody 
> > work on it ?  
> Not yet. We are thinking about it for 0.20, but we really need a 
> convincing use case. The biggest problems are that on clients with no 
> special software installed, we cannot either enable the special Windows 
> backup privilege, which allows us access to all files, or enable Volume 
> Shadow Services which allow us to back up locked files and to back up 
> files without locking them. These are serious problems.
> We were thinking that the easiest solution would be simply to require that 
> Box Backup is installed on every client. If this is a really big problem 
> for you and other users, then clearly we will have to reconsider, but it 
> would be really useful to know exactly why you don't want to run a client 
> on every machine, and what is stopping you from doing so?
> If you were willing to install some kind of agent on every machine, but 
> not to install a full Box Backup client, then we could also avoid these 
> problems, but it means quite a bit of extra development work to create 
> that agent, so we would need to justify that work. Also, the agent itself 
> is an additional security risk.
> On the other hand, if you want to back up Samba shares and you're willing 
> to live with the above limitations, of not being able to back up files 
> that your Box Backup user doesn't have access to, or which are locked, 
> then we can simply fix support for backing up network shares in the 
> client, which shouldn't be too hard.
> So please can you tell us a bit more about your situation?  

We support some smaller companies. They have several windows machines. But they don't always have centralized storage solutions.

So my dream was, to install them a small Linux system, which mounts the exports from all windows machines and backs it up. This would be very easy to install for the customer. Export the directories and enter it into a webinterface on the Boxbackup Linux System.

In smaller companies backing up privileges is not so much important. Locked files could really be a problem.

If i install the Boxbackup Client on every machine, they need more than one account on my boxbackup storage.

Next stage in my dream is to sell this backup boxes using an online shop. Installation is done by the customer itself.

Do you understand the situation ?

> > Restoring to NFS- or Samba-mounted storage makes problems while setting 
> > file owner (chown). So i disabled throwing an exception if chown fails 
> > (see attached file boxbackup_disable_chown_errors.patch).  
> I don't think we can do that in general, but we could add a restore mode 
> that doesn't attempt to restore permissions.
> > Will it be possible to backup and restore ACL from windows exports ?  
> I started working on this but some developers were dead against it, saying 
> that restoring ACLs was not useful and not possible in general, especially 
> if restoring to a different system/domain than we backed up from. I have 
> some half-finished code in need to completion, testing and merging, which 
> I could pick up if ACL support turns out to be really important.
> So can I ask, for this question as well, exactly why you want to back up 
> and restore ACLs and under what conditions?  

I do not use windows systems, and i still do not really understand the functionality of ACL itself. But backing up using other systems (even rsync) support this. I do not think that it is very important for my need. But it would be a nice feature.

Nice day, Torsten

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