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  1. #1

    Wanting to do network backups

    We have a need to backup our office data spread around some 10 PCs in different rooms. I have considered a NAS server but this just deals with data backup. I am wondering that we may need other cerntralised software (e.g. CRM) so am considering a Linux server.

    At the moment all the folders and files are on individual machines. How do these get rearranged so that we can network (share) all of them and arrange backups?

    Are they all ported somehow to the server?

    Are they all synchronised somehow?

    When someone opens a file for editing is it opened from the server or a local copy?


  2. #2
    The design of your network could take multiple turns after you pose an important question like that. I'll let you know what I do and you can take it from there:

    For most user's files, we have a central linux server running samba. In this case, users would be opening files from the server and not from their individual computers. All of the computers are windows and we do domain logins which automatically map drives to the individual user's files and common files. This works very well in most cases (stationary workstations which are all connected to the server). Users have their own space and if they need to share something quickly they just put a copy in the common area. Backups can then be handled purely within the server (i.e. backed up to another partition) or sent to another dedicated backup server during off times.

    Another option which we use for more mobile users (our building's wireless network is not integrated with our own network) is to have a box with Restore installed. In this case users open files on their own computers and they would get backed up later. These users generally find that the easiest way to get files from the central server is ssh/sftp. This allows for timed backups where users can either manually have their files backed up or it will connect automatically.

    Welcome to the RESTORE Website

    There are of course other options which may require less setup, but perhapse more time down the road if your network grows. You could just set up a linux box which your users can manually back up their files via ssh/sftp or samba.

    Unfortunately until you decide what you want your network to do, I think all I can give is options.

    Good luck,
    Linux since: 2001
    Gentoo since: 2004
    - - - - - - - -
    I fix things until they break.

  3. #3
    I do think I would prefer your method. Where can I learn about the domain setup and drive mapping and its configuration on the Linux server?

  4. $spacer_open
  5. #4
    The best place to look for all of the different options is at the samba documentation. Before you get bogged down in that however, here are a copule of links which go through a simple setup. I would just mess around with one or two computers to get comfortable before you change up everyone's setup.

    How to Configure Samba 2.2 as a Primary Domain Controller

    Samba NT Domain Controller

    I hope the switch goes well!
    Linux since: 2001
    Gentoo since: 2004
    - - - - - - - -
    I fix things until they break.

  6. #5
    I'm thinking of putting the server in the same cabinet as the network switch and ADSL unit so that this is all controlled from the same power source and saves the server being another source of netwotk down. Running Samba this can serve the files. We will have mobile users who I want to connect with wireless.

    I am not sure whether to swap the switch with a firewall come router to combine existing units and provide future facilities like VPN.

    I do wonder if using syncToy on the windows machines is a better way of backing up and there is also the synchronisation facility on windows. Has anyone used these in a network scenario?

    I wonder if running the Restore software can be done on the same platfrom as Samba?

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