Standalone backup agents for Linux and Unix workloads on-premises or in the public cloud
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ascaris
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Would it be possible to have image _and_ file level backups for consumers?

Post by ascaris »

I use the free edition of Veeam Agent to back up my personal Linux PCs in my home. I don't have any servers or any business-related anything.

I sometimes back my PCs up to a file share on a PC on the network, and other times I back up to a local USB drive. I like to have redundant backups, for the obvious reasons.

Of course, with Veeam free, I am limited to one job, so I have to go in and manually edit the parameters each time I want to switch between local and network backup, and I have to get everything lined up just right or it will give up on incremental backups and start a new full one. It's inconvenient, but doable.

As part of my setup, I have a LUKS encrypted volume where I store all of my personal or sensitive data, like my browser and email profiles, along with the personal pictures and documents folders. Most of my data files (whether personal or not... makes it easier to ensure it's all covered) is in the encrypted volume.

For most of the system, I use the image-type backups, but it's less than ideal with the encrypted volumes. At the sector level, the entire encrypted volume appears to be full no matter how much actual data is inside, and it's incompressible. I don't think it can be backed up incrementally either, so this large, uncompressed blob would have to be backed up fully each time even if there have been only minor changes.

For that data, I would like to do a file-level backup, encrypted by the backup program as it is stored. Veeam is capable of that, of course, but when I tried to configure it to do so, it told me it is not possible to switch between image and file backups, and that I should create a new backup job.

Very funny, Veeam. You know darned well that's impossible.

Now I am in the situation where I use and am familiar with a Veeam, a very good backup program that is capable of doing what I need, yet it seems that I need to find another backup program anyway, because Veeam simply refuses to do it, by design.

If there is some concern that people will inappropriately use the free version when the licensing requirements would dictate that one of the non-free ones be used, surely there is a better way of addressing this, as the various Windows backup programs presumably have done. None of the Windows backup programs I am familiar with that are aimed at consumers limit the user to one profile or backup job, and other than that I happen to be using Linux instead of Windows, my use case is exactly the same as the users of any of those programs.

I know that the highest, most expensive tier of licensing for Veeam permits this, but I'm just a regular home user, not an enterprise user that can afford that. I'd pay a reasonable amount for the feature, but the enterprise server level licensing isn't at all reasonable for home users.

Thanks!

Vitaliy S.
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Re: Would it be possible to have image _and_ file level backups for consumers?

Post by Vitaliy S. » 1 person likes this post

Hi,

All Veeam agents in the FREE edition behave the same (including the Windows agent). So if there is a need to switch to a more functional version, then as a possible solution, you can potentially refer to a Veeam service provider and rent a Veeam Agent from him (I guess you can even rent a single agent if you want).

I understand that it is not the answer you wanted to hear, but I guess this would address your issues right away without waiting for future changes (if any) for agents in the FREE mode.

Thanks!

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