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rocknroll : an incremental backup tool based on rsync.

Permanent link : http://math.univ-angers.fr/˜charbonnel/rocknroll


rocknroll - Rsync fOr baCKup and Roll

Incremental backup maker based on rsync.


rocknroll --init n tag dstdir

rocknroll [options] tag srcdir dstdir

rocknroll --help

rocknroll --man


rocknroll backups a remote directories tree srcdir in dstdir onto the local host. For this backup, it manages a set of archives, named tag.1, tag.2, etc. Using the famous 'link-dest' option of rsync, it keeps only the difference between the different archives.

A dstdir can contain several tagged sequences of archive. For example, a dstdir can contain 2 archive sets named daily.1 daily.2 daily.3 daily.4 daily.5 daily.6 daily.7 and week.1 week.2 week.3 week.4.

Before a dstdir can be able to store an archive sequence, it must be formatted with the --init option.


--init n

format a backup directory to receive n archives. Needed before a dstdir can be used.

-c config_file

use an alternate config file. By default, rocknroll.conf is searched in @, @/../etc, /etc, where @ is the directory contained the rocknroll binary.


start again with an existing .tag.running archive (useful after an abort)


don't perfom any action, just say what it could be done

--link-dest dir

by default the link-dest option is set to the tag.1 directory name. This option is to bypass this default.

--mail_from email

set the email address of the sender for the mail alerts

--mail_to email

set the email address of the recipient for the mail alerts

--max_runtime time_in_second

set the max among of time that a backup can take. Older than this value, a .tag.running temporary directory will be deleted.


don't specify a --link-dest tag.1 option to rsync


don't roll up the archives set


only update the archive tag.1 (without deletion of any files on it). Don't roll up the archives set.

--rsync_retcode_ok n,n,n,n

specify a list of return codes of rsync considered as OK codes. Each code not specified with --rsync_retcode_ok or --rsync_retcode_warn is considered as an error return code.

--rsync_retcode_warn n,n,n

specify a list of return codes of rsync considered as warning codes. Each code not specified with --rsync_retcode_ok or --rsync_retcode_warn is considered as an error return code.

--ro "--opt1 --opt2 --opt3"

pass some options to rsync (useful only in argument of command line)

--ro_default "--opt1 --opt2"

pass some options to rsync (useful only in config file)

--send_warn 0/1

send alert on warning (default is send alert only on error)

--smtp_server smtp_server

set the SMTP server


update archive tag.1 (with deletion of obsolete files). Don't roll up archives set.


enable talk to syslog


A configuration file rocknroll.conf, located in @, @/../etc, /etc, where @ is the directory contained the rocknroll binary, can contain any of the preceeding options. The format of a line is : option=value. A # starts a comment.



configuration file


a control file located in the backup directory, related to the tag archive set.


the temporary directory (located in the archive directory) for the running rsync.


rsnapshot, http://rsnapshot.org. rsnapshot and rocknroll have similar functionalities, and rsnapshot has been the first on the place. But when I began to think about rocknroll, I've never heard of rnspashot.


Jacquelin Charbonnel, jacquelin.charbonnel at math.cnrs.fr


Copyright Jacquelin Charbonnel <jacquelin.charbonnel at math.cnrs.fr>

This software is governed by the CeCILL-C license under French law and abiding by the rules of distribution of free software. You can use, modify and/ or redistribute the software under the terms of the CeCILL-C license as circulated by CEA, CNRS and INRIA at the following URL "http://www.cecill.info".

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In this respect, the user's attention is drawn to the risks associated with loading, using, modifying and/or developing or reproducing the software by the user in light of its specific status of free software, that may mean that it is complicated to manipulate, and that also therefore means that it is reserved for developers and experienced professionals having in-depth computer knowledge. Users are therefore encouraged to load and test the software's suitability as regards their requirements in conditions enabling the security of their systems and/or data to be ensured and, more generally, to use and operate it in the same conditions as regards security.

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