Annotation of wikisrc/tutorials/how_to_use_snapshots.mdwn, revision 1.1
1.1 ! jdf 1: # How to use snapshots with NetBSD
! 3: Snapshots using fss(4) aren't a new thing in NetBSD, they have been supported
! 4: since NetBSD 2.0. But their concept and usage is rather unintuitive from what
! 5: you might know from other snapshotting mechanisms such as zfs', so here is a
! 6: tutorial on how to use them.
! 8: ## What is a snapshot?
! 10: A snapshot is a consistent view on a filesystem at a certain point in time.
! 11: This means, you take a snapshot of a filesystem, then create a new file or
! 12: change an existing one, and if you look at the snapshot, it will show you the
! 13: old version of the file or the directory without this file.
! 15: ## What is a snapshot not?
! 17: A snapshot is no filesystem versioning! Snapshots by fss are read-only
! 18: *views*, and you cannot revert the filesystem back to a snapshot without
! 19: copying all the files on filesystem layer. You can only mount the
! 20: snapshot to see what the filesystem looked like back then, but not more.
! 22: ## How to create snapshots?
! 24: Snapshots are configured using the tool fssconfig(8). To create a
! 25: snapshot, you have to enter the snapshot device you want to use
! 26: (`/dev/fssX`), the filesystem you want to snapshot and the place of the
! 27: snapshot file (which can even lie on the filesystem it is snapshotting).
! 28: So, if you want to create a snapshot of filesystem `/`, you would e.g.
! 29: enter:
! 31: # fssconfig -c fss0 / /root/backup
! 33: Then you get a snapshot in `/root/backup`. You can then mount that
! 34: snapshot somewhere, and in that mount, you have a view of the filesystem
! 35: at the point of creating the snapshot:
! 37: # mount /dev/fss0 /mnt
! 39: When you are done with the snapshot, you unmount it and unconfigure the snapshot:
! 41: # umount /dev/fss0
! 42: # fssconfig -u fss0
! 44: ## How to use snapshots?
! 46: To use a snapshot, you just configure it again with the same parameters
! 47: as the first time, but now without creating it:
! 49: # fssconfig fss0 / /root/backup
! 50: # mount /dev/fss0 /mnt
! 52: If you want to use the snapshot only once, you can use the option `-x`
! 53: when creating it. Then the snapshot will only be available for this one
! 54: single time, and is deleted afterwards.
! 56: # fssconfig -cx fss0 / /root/backup
! 58: ## Usage example
! 60: What is this even good for if I can't even write to it?
! 61: You can use it e.g. for saving files before doing an upgrade or other
! 62: critical changes. When the upgrade goes wrong, you just have to copy
! 63: back the files from the snapshot to the real filesystem.
! 65: So, all in all, an example of how to use a snapshot to save and rescue a
! 66: system:
! 68: # fssconfig -c fss0 / /root/backup
! 69: # fssconfig -u fss0
! 70: # rm /etc/rc.conf
! 71: # shutdown -r now
! 72: [...system will not start again, but drop you to a single-user shell...]
! 73: # mount -o rw /
! 74: # fssconfig -x fss0 / /root/backup # The snapshot will be deleted afterwards.
! 75: # mount /dev/fss0 /mnt
! 76: # cp /mnt/etc/rc.conf /etc/rc.conf
! 77: # shutdown -r now
! 78: [be happy about the login prompt again]
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