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Using CVS as an enterprise backup facility

From: Merlin Beedell
Subject: Using CVS as an enterprise backup facility
Date: Thu, 12 May 2005 10:07:32 +0100

CVS sounds like a possible solution to the following scenario:

We are currently looking at backing up our main [file] servers to a remote 
site's hard disk.  The requirements are:
 All files to be copied to the remote site just once (i.e. so that 200Gb does 
not get transferred every night/week or month over broadband connection).
 From then on we only need to back up new or changed files.
 For Changed files, we need to keep up to 3 (or a configurable number of) prior 
 We need to see a simple report showing backup completion and any issues on the 

 To restore, we need to be able to easily select a file from a directory 
structure on the backup machine, and choose the most recent or one of the 
previous versions.

I don't know of any backup software that runs quite like this (does anyone?).  
Clearly CVS would just be a component of such a system - yet it seems so 
possible that it really aught to be attempted.  The key part is in a simple 
interfaces for
  - selecting servers and directories that should be backed up
  - a scheduler
  - a reporter
  - a restore interface.

Am I being mad, or are there loads of existing products that do this, or does 
this sound like a great idea?

Merlin Beedell
Senior Application Developer
Corporate Internet Ltd.
Tel: 020-7403 9900
Fax: 020-7403 7070
Mobile: 078 1188 0207

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