[Dovecot] Backing Up

Daniel L. Miller dmiller at amfes.com
Fri Oct 31 03:03:50 EET 2008

Stewart Dean wrote:
> Dave McGuire wrote:
>> On Oct 29, 2008, at 3:42 PM, Scott Silva wrote:
>>>> What is the best way to do a (server-side) backup of all mail in a
>>>> user's mail?
>>> I usually just rsync the /home directories to another server. The 
>>> inital sync
>>> can take a while, but it gets faster after there is a base to work 
>>> from.
>>   ...and it's much less painful if you're using maildir instead of mbox!
>>            -Dave
> I have to wonder.  I have a mailserver that I do a bootable complete 
> image copy of with all files and O/S in two hours to an Ultrium-2 
> tape, 95 GB.  When I switch to maildir, I will go from some 25,000 
> mbox files to 2.5 to 3 million files...I can't believe that isn't 
> going to hurt and will force me into incrementals.....
Well, I can't talk about an installation of that size - but I CAN say 
I've been using an rsync based backup and been thrilled with the 
results.  I'm supporting a measly dozen users, but I'm incrementally 
backing up our complete server on a nightly basis.  I think the script 
now takes less than an hour to run - for a complete backup.

Since I'm doing this via a VPN to a server at my house, it makes it 
rather convenient.  I love having an immediately available backup I can 
ssh to - that now represents a daily snapshot for over a year - so when 
one of my users says, "Um...if I deleted a file that I've been working 
on for the past two weeks...can you get it back?"


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