Making a system image or at least, of most chritical server data?

Howdy, everybody!
I’m not a new user to the forums in general, and if you check the virtualmin forum you can frequently find me hanging out on that forum, sometimes having common questions, and sometimes not so much.
What I’m wondering is this.
First, I do use Virtualmin, but I’m refering specificly to the Webmin software here in this case. :slight_smile:
Secondly, I’ve never made backups using webmin’s interface, so am unsure of just to what extent I should rely upon Webmin to backup anything in particular, considering that no software is 100 percent free of human errors, and so forth. :slight_smile:
What I’m wondering is if Webmin has any way of backing up an exact image of the system?
And, just in case it doesn’t, do any tools exist instead that might be abel to help with this process?
I ask because I’m running Virtualmin on a production server.
Althoug the server is a very nice put together box in a data center who I work well with, nothing is ever 100 percent free of error is said earlier, and I wish to be prepared for an event in wich my provider fixes my production server, and asks me to basicly, start utterly over from scratch as far as the hard-drive is concerned.
They don’t handel OS installations-I’m actually responsible for doing that myself.
Only thing they’ll do or are obligated to do is fix hardware specifics with my production box. Software one hundred percent out of the question.
As a result, I’m concerned that should something like this someday go (in wich the entire box is unaccessible for a period of time) how would I go about macking a backup that includes:
The CEntOS static network configuration files in /etc/sysconfig, as I have specail networking wich is not commonplace, for a start?
What I’m attempting to do (with every service pretty much stopped and in fact I’m considering booting into an environment so that the normal server isn’t even active), to aviod problems.
But the ideal thing I’m after would be an image of the system that I could then restore, boot, and voila!
I’d be able to have user accountsand everything else that was perfectly working (before the death of the server) back up hopefully without a problem being encountered as I would need thid downtime to be as minimal as possible, since in my case, downtime means loss of customers and more seriously given the hobby-based business I operate, loss of much valued extra income. :slight_smile:
Thanks for any suggestions!
Again, the ideal solution would be to have an almost exact system image of /, /root, /home, etc.
CentOS 6 is installed, LVM is used in the system, and the installation I did pretty much just automaticly runs through a default CentOS installation for a server.
The images that I have to use are hosted by my provider-but as mentioned, reisntalling is what I have to do on my own.
What I’m trying to do is backup all the essential data, and make a full system restore completely possible.
Perhaps knowing exactly how Webmin backs up data, wich specific files I may need to copy over, etc would be useful.
If I need to copy over /home and stuff entirely (as I’m actually trying to prepare myself for an utter server death in wich I lose all of /home too) then how will I go about restoring system usernames, group IDs, and all that stuff?
All of this is of paramount concern taht I have, for obvious reasons.
Any help thus is much appreciated.

there are some apps that can do bare-metal-recovery, like clonezilla (which I have used often)
you could also try Acronis or bakula and make backups of critical files or use webmin backups

I would rather go for raid 5 where you can swap a failing harddrive with another one and it will automatically rebuild or have a failover system so you can switch to the other server in case the main server goes down

the cheapest way to go in my opinion is clonezilla.

I think the problem on Linux is that there is no “bare-metal-recovery” software (AFAIK) that can do “online/live” images (without shutting down the server). If you have a big drive, then downtime could be significant. [Acronis/Norton … can image your disk while you are online in Windows.]

But you could try OpenVZ, where it is easily possible to live backup or migrate containers without shutting down the server (using vzdump or vzdup). Of course if the host system fails, you would have to reinstall it, but this would be just a minimal installation with only a few config steps).