[Box Backup] Samba and Boxbackup

Chris Wilson boxbackup at fluffy.co.uk
Wed Jan 31 18:24:41 GMT 2007

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?

> 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?

Cheers, Chris.
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\  __/ / ,__(_)_  | Chris Wilson <0000 at qwirx.com> - Cambs UK |
/ (_/ ,\/ _/ /_ \ | Security/C/C++/Java/Perl/SQL/HTML Developer |
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