Ubuntu: Use Clonezilla to create copy of my machine and revert from 17.10 to 16.04



Question:

I recently switched to 17.10 and it conflicts with many of the utilities I use for work. It's past the point of frustration. I want to backup/clone my laptop to:

  1. revert to 16.04

  2. create a back-up machine on a separate laptop (possibly on Mint 18.3) in case it hits the fan

I've been told clonezilla is the way to go. I have the Live-USB created and I have a good idea of where to go from here. Before I start, I want to make sure that my config files, gpg keys, and other customization will be copied over.

I have been using Ubuntu and various distros for a few years now but I would still consider myself a novice outside of file system management and networking. Looking for suggestions of best practice, other methods, or things to watch out for in the process. It's my work laptop so I can't afford to screw this up!


Solution:1

Clonezilla is a tool for creating an image of a computer - an exact copy, that can be replicated to a new computer. If you want to revert to 16.04 this is realistically speaking a re-installation.

In this case you probably want a backup of /home. There's several ways to do this. You can look into regular backup tools like duplicity, or you can make a simple archive of /home.

To make a simple archive, you can use the following command in a terminal:

sudo tar -cvf /path/to/archive/backup.tar /home/username  

This file will contain all the content of /home, and can be stored on for instance a USB disk.

Once you have reinstalled 16.04 you can restore this with

sudo -i  cd /home/  tar --exclude=.cache -xvf /path/to/archive/backup.tar  

In addition you may have to restore ownership of your home directory.

sudo chown -R username.username /home/username  

If you make a separate partition for /home (or you already have this) you can simply re-install 16.04, and use the old /home.

The home directory is largely independent of the Linux distribution, but you may run into issues with different versions of software that does not recognize all options in the configuration.


Solution:2

I am using Clonezilla for regular backups. I proceed following way:

  1. I am preparing an USB Harddrive for the backup creating a directory in root of the drive: HDD Backups (I am using NTFS formatted drive). Be sure to check the needed space requirements.
  2. With Clonezilla live USB stick I boot up the machine, after a Keymap dialog appears I connect the USB Harddrive to second USB port.
  3. Within following dialogs I choose the HDD Backups on the Harddrive as mount/Partimag directory.
  4. I am using device - image mode.
  5. In last step I am selecting the Drive for which I am doing the backup.
  6. You get a confirmation question whether to proceed with backup - check the settings and choose y/n.
  7. After backup is done you can choose power-off, reboot or command line options - I am usually powering off the computer and rebooting.
  8. After power-off I remove USB stick and Harddrive.

Note:If u also have question or solution just comment us below or mail us on toontricks1994@gmail.com
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