Backup problem

Hi people.

I wish to reboot the server but using the reboot now function in Webmin does nothing. I get the button saying “Reboot Now” but when I click it the page reloads and says rebooting (or whatever) but the server simply does not reboot.

I tried to do a “reboot -r now” in Putty. It says that it is going to reboot, but again, does nothing.

So I figured that the next stage would be to power cycle the box but before doing so I should take another backup to a different destination just in case the error is backed up as well.

When I went into “Filesystem backup” I started to enter details but realised that I was entering the wrong info and cancelled before I pressed the backup now button.

So far so good.

So I started again and specified the second drive in the server as a destination like this “/disk2/backup-27-01-10/”

Webmin reports the following :-
Performing backup of / to /disk2/backup-27-01-10/ …

DUMP: Date of this level 0 dump: Wed Jan 27 09:02:48 2010
DUMP: Dumping /dev/hda3 (/) to /disk2/backup-27-01-10/
DUMP: Label: /
DUMP: Writing 10 Kilobyte records
DUMP: mapping (Pass I) [regular files]
DUMP: mapping (Pass II) [directories]
DUMP: estimated 14077429 blocks.
DUMP: Cannot open output “/disk2/backup-27-01-10/”: Is a directory

This has been like that for a long time. I have looked in "Runnung Processes and find :

Under CPU :
10839 root 8.9 % dump -0 -f /disk2/backup-27-01-10/ -F /etc/webmin/fsdump/ 1082712645829 …

Under PID:
10834 root 09:02 /usr/libexec/webmin/fsdump/backup.cgi
10839 root 09:02 dump -0 -f /disk2/backup-27-01-10/ -F /etc/webmin/fsdump/ 1082712645829 …
13623 root 09:40 dump -0 -f /disk2/backup-27-01-10/ -F /etc/webmin/fsdump/ 1082712645829 …

(time now is 11:00)

So, my question is
Is the line “Cannot open output” fatal or should I just let this run.

Or should I take some other action I should take?

CentOS Linux 5.4
Webmin version 1.500
Virtualmin version 3.76 Pro

Thanks for reading

Well, the immediate panic is over. I went poking around and killed the Fail2Ban process (which was part of the reasons for wanting to do a reboot) and suddenly the server rebooted itself.

Guess I have to investigate the backup problem so any comment on the “DUMP: Cannot open output “/disk2/backup-27-01-10/”: Is a directory” line would be appreciated.

Thanks for reading


While there’s nothing wrong with also doing filesystem backups – I’d highly suggest generating backups for your various Virtual Servers using the “Backup and Restore” in Virtualmin.

Doing that will make things super-easy in the future to handle any problems that come up, as it’ll keep track of all the files, config data, databases, and so forth of each of your accounts.

Now, you may also want to do a filesystem backup, just so that you’re backing up even more stuff.

While I don’t know the exact reason for the error you’re getting, it does sound like for some reason, the backup destination is requesting a filename, rather than a directory name. Perhaps you selected the “In TAR format” option?

So, try setting the destination to a filename – you can just add a .tar.gz to the end of what you have there already, for example.


Many thanks for replying Eric,

Being hyper-scared, I was trying to do a backup of everything, I just started with the filesystem.

I will have a further play with the backup again today.


Thanks for that Eric,

I have played with the backup and added ".tar.gz " as suggested.

It worked in as much as a backup was created. Cool !

Just to be certain though, could you or anybody else, confirm that by simply putting ".tar.gz " at the end of a filename is OK.

I guess the real question I am asking is whether or not the file is actually a “tar.gz” or just the filename.

Thanks for reading,


Well, I’m not sure which options were used to make the backup, so I can’t be certain… however, you can always determine what kind of file you’re dealing with by running this command:

file /path/to/filename

If it’s a .tar.gz file, regardless of the filename, the “file” command will tell you “gzip compressed data”. Then if you gunzip it and run “file” again, you’ll get “POSIX tar archive (GNU)”.