My SSD has Died and No Backups.


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Oct 22, 2020
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I was thinking the other day...what would happen if my 500GB SSD died and I was stupid enough not to have a backup. Could I remember what I had and how long would it take to Re-Install everything.

I'm not talking about a few System files but a full Backup of everything on the the moment mine is 158GB.
This is what I would have to do...
Reinstall Distro
Customise System and Settings...Install all Updates
Install all software...try to remember what software I had and Optimise SSD
Install all browsers...add-ons and websites that I can remember. Re-Install VMs...change DNS
Install Printer and and install drivers
Run Driver Manager ...Enable Firewall
Setup Timeshift on External HDD and create a snapshot which should have been done in the first place.
Create image with both Foxclone and Redorescue on External SSD
All files...Pictures...Music...Documents etc are lost...have to start from scratch.
Install vpn or proxy again
Download new Wallpapers and change my Login Wallpaper.

What a list...could be more and would take days or a week to complete and be without a computer but how long would it take if I had a full backup of my System...lets see in this case to a new SSD of the same size how long it would take...

Timeshift snapshot from an External HDD...10 minutes
Foxclone and Redorescue from an External SSD about 45 minutes.

Of course Drive failure isn't the only thing that could destroy your System...a bad Terminal command...deleting something you shouldn't etc, so if you're a beginner and you don't have a decent Backup as've only yourself to blame.

Scared the willies out of me, Bob, albeit I thought it highly unlikely.

Maybe you could put a "Hypothetical" at the start of the subject?

Scared the willies out of me, Bob, albeit I thought it highly unlikely.

Maybe you could put a "Hypothetical" at the start of the subject?


I wanted to get people's attention as to what will happen.
I remaster my installation after I get done tweaking it - and periodically after that - so when or if I have to reinstall the system is already updated - as far as files goes I really keep all important stuff on an encrypted external drive and not on my internal one
It makes sense to keep a backup of all the documents and other personal stuff but I never made a backup of the system. It really depends how prone to accidents one is. I had only two OS installations in the last 8 years. I would prefer to start fresh after such a long time.
Of course if accidents happen severel times a year then maybe it makes sense to keep system backups but even then I would to prefer to start fresh and configure system better than I did previously.
I try to not keep much if anything on my computers.

I store stuff onto several different USB flash drives and DVD/CD discs.

Yeah I know who still uses DVD/CD discs right, Well I do and you can't beat them imo.

Ain't never had one of them fail either leastwise unless someone steps on it. :p

I also save stuff to my old mechanical 1TB backup drive so I believe for the most part I'm covered.

Make several backups on different media and keep them in different safe places although accessible safe places.

I have to go with @bob466 on the fact that user backup is a must.

Good thread @bob466.
// off topic
Will there be a funeral for the deceased SSD or data on it? lol

// on topic
It happened to me once too once, since then I do my best to manually backup anything I care about,
some of my backups are over 10yrs old and they still load from disk.
Indeed, this has also happened to me. I have two USB HDDs (a 1TB and a 2TB), a 512GB SD card, and Dropbox. I learned the freakin' hard way. And to the one who uses optical media - no judgement, as I still have a DOS 6.22/Win 3.1 system in great shape (save for a dead 5.25" floppy drive)! LOVE Optical Media!
I remaster my installation after I get done tweaking it
@GatorsFan ....what does that 'remastering' involve? you use a backup tool/utility/piece of software?

i get the drift.....I use Timeshift and Rescuezilla in a weird sort of rotation to keep the gremlins at bay.
This is one good thing about using Puppy Linux.
Most every Puppy Linux distro after install the user creates a save file.

At the end of a session or when the user is finished for the day the user can if the user chooses to save all of the work to that save file.

A smart user in this case will keep a backup or a couple of backups on different media storage along with the computer being used.

The red icon is the save button to save user work without restarting the desktop.

The user can save the daily work the time of a system restart if desired.

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I personally just put the few important things I have in cloud accounts, and just shrug about the rest. However, if you basically live on your computer, that is a whole other conundrum.
These days, it's so easy to create a full backup image of your there's no excuse not to. In Linux years ago it wasn't the case.

People are free to do whatever they like but I know what I want to do. Linux Distros don't break but if you do an upgrade and things don't can't go back. With an image you just put it back on the Drive with nothing lost...can't be any easier than that.

Here are my Timeshift snapshots on an External Protable 2TB HDD...

Here are my Foxclone and Redorescue images on an External Portable 1TB SSD...

Unfortunately we all learn the hard way ...I know I have but repeating it is just plain stupid.
Unfortunately we all learn the hard way ...I know I have but repeating it is just plain stupid. View attachment 20182
I know I've learned the hard way and it took more than once.

In my day learning the hard way was all there was nothing was easy.

Tuition for the price of an education and I still have to pay every now and then which I refer to as continuing education.

I've just finished backing-up all dozen or so current occupants of the 'kennels'. Which has taken me about 40-45 minutes, in total...

An hour well-spent. And that runs in the background, while I'm getting on with other stuff...

Laziness and lack of extra hard drive space are two great excuses not to :) For me it's the former, because I must have a couple of terabytes of HDD space lying around.
But HDD space is considered cheap commodity nowdays.
1TB external HDD costed me 50€, that's more than enough for my needs and the drive will last for years which is much less than 1 cent per day.
All my backups total 790GB...minus compression applied by Foxclone and Redorescue. So they must be stored on External Devices.

I store Timeshift backups on a different Drive because it must be formatted to EXT4...where as Foxclone and Redorescue images can be put on any file system External Drive.
I did forget to mention one thing...I won't recommend Rescuezilla as I've had nothing but trouble with it twice...a few months ago and today.

When you install the ISO to a Flash Drive with doesn't show on the Desktop...go to Computer you see this...

It won't open either.
So I copied the ISO in to Ventoy...created a Folder on my Portable SSD and booted to Ventoy then Rescuezilla. Started creating an image of my system...took about 50 mins...when it got to the end I got a message saying...Failed to output checksum file info-id-txt...what ever the hell that is.

So I tried to delete the image Folder and got this...

I couldn't run the verify tool either...couldn't delete the bloody thing and was 120GB...had to open as Root and delete it from there...why this happened who knows but I'll never use it again...if you want to use this do so at your own risk.

I'd never use clonezilla either or anything ending in zilla just to be safe.
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