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       tob - Tape Oriented Backup


       tob  [ -rc rcfile ] [ [ -f alternate_device ] [ -backups ] [ -check ] [
       -find specification ] [ -full volume ] [ -fullcount volume  ]  [  -diff
       volume  ]  [ -diffcount volume ] [ -inc volume ] [ -inccount volume ] [
       -restore volume [ specification ] [ directory ]] [ -verbose ] [ -verify
       volume ]


       tob  is  a  simple  yet configurable shell-script which, given a set of
       ‘volume definitions’, runs tar(1) or afio(1) based backups.

       tob is a general driver for the making and maintaining of  backups.  It
       makes  full  backups,  differential  backups  (of  the files which were
       changed since the last full backup), incremental backups (of the  files
       which  were changed since all previous backups), lets you determine the
       size of the backup before actually making it, and maintains listings of
       made backups.

       tob  can  create  backups  on  either  tape  devices or your computer’s
       filesystem.   Backups  stored  in  your  filesystem  are  automatically
       deleted once they reach a certain age.


       -rc resourcefile
              This  argument  selects  an alternative resource file instead of
              the standard tob.rc which is read from the  directory  /etc/tob.
              When  present,  this  argument  must be the first on the command

       -f alternative_device
              This argument selects an alternative device file for the  backup
              or  restore  operation.  When present, this argument must be the
              first, or second after -rc on the command line.

              This flag will cause tob to show which  backups  were  made  and
              when.  This information is retrieved from backup listings in the
              /var/lib/tob directory. Sample output of this command is:
               VOLUME: test TYPE: Full         DATE: Mar 7  10:09
               VOLUME: test TYPE: differential DATE: Mar 7  11:18
               VOLUME: unix TYPE: Full         DATE: Feb 23 18:39

       -check This argument will cause tob to check its environment  settings,
              to  scan the resource file, and to report errors. When no errors
              are found, tob will  report  which  volumes  are  defined.  This
              argument may be useful when installing and testing tob.

       -find specification
              This  causes  tob  to  scan  its listing files and to report any
              files which match specification. The specification argument is a
              grep(1) expression, and may contain regular expression commands.
              The -find command is useful to determine in which backup a given
              file resides. E.g., the command
                 tob -find ’.*in’
              lists all files ending with "in". The files can then be restored
              from the reported backup.  The command
                 tob -find .
              will list all files of all volumes.

       -full volume
              These arguments start a full backup of volume.   The  volume  is
              defined  by  its  files in /etc/tob/volumes.  The backup device,
              backup program etc. are defined in the resource file.

       -fullcount volume
              These arguments cause tob to report the size  (in  bytes)  of  a
              full  backup  of  volume.  The backup is not actually made; only
              its size is determined.

       -diff volume
              This causes tob to start a differential  backup  of  volume.   A
              differential backup is only possible when a previous full backup

       -diffcount volume
              These arguments cause tob to report the number  of  bytes  which
              would  be  backed  up during a differential backup. This command
              may be useful to determine whether a differential backup  should
              be made yet.

       -inc volume
              This  flag causes tob to start an incremental backup.  This type
              is only possible when a full  backup  exists  and  involves  all
              files which are changed since all the backups of the volume.

       -inccount volume
              These  arguments  cause  tob to report the number of bytes which
              would be backed up during an incremental backup.

       -restore [volume] [specification]
              These flags cause tob to  restore  all  files  which  match  the
              specification. The directory argument is optional; when present,
              tob restores the files under the mentioned directory. By default
              the files are restored under the current working directory.  The
              specification  may  contain  wildcards;  e.g.,  /etc/def*   will
              restore  any  files  which start with "/etc/def".  Wildcards may
              have to be quoted to prevent shell expansion, as in:
                tob -restore ’/etc/def*’
              You can, e.g., restore all files which end in "myfile" with  the
              expression  *myfile;  no  matter  from which directory the files
              were backed up.

              Please note that some archivers  prefer  to  get  specifications
              without  the  leading  slash,  e.g.  ’etc/apache/*’.  Arj is one

              This command will list the contents of the  backup  device.  Use
              tob  -verbose | grep expression to list only files on the backup
              device which match expression.

       -verify volume
              This command lets tob verify the last full backup.  This options
              is   only   available   for  backups  made  with  afio(1).   The
              differences found  by  afio(1)  are  reported  on  the  standard


              The  tob  script  depends  on  the  variables  specified in this
              resource file during its actions.  The format  of  the  resource
              file  is  variable=value,  defining  names for various variables
              which are used by tob.  Comments can be present in the  resource
              file,  when  preceded  by a hash-mark. The resource file follows
              the standard /bin/sh syntax. Please see  the  examples  supplied
              with tob.

              Files  in this directory define backup volumes. A volume name is
              defined by a file  name.startdir  which  contains  the  starting
              directories  of  the   backup.   The  format of this file is one
              directory per line. No comments may occur in this  file.   E.g.,
              if  your configuration has two disk filesystems mounted on / and
              /usr respectively, then a backup volume bothdisks which  selects
              both    filesystems   is   defined   by   the   following   file


              Since the default behavior of tob is to select only  files  from
              one  device  and  not  to  descend  different  devices,  in this
              scenario, if you provide a starting directory of / ,  then  /usr
              would not be backed up.

              If  your  start directories have spaces or special characters in
              them, they must be escaped for the bash shell,  which  generally
              means a backslash in front of spaces:

                 /windows/Documents\ and\ Settings/

              A second file, name.exclude, can be created to indicate files to
              exclude from a  backup  name.   This  file  is  optional.   When
              present,  the  exclude file must contain grep-expressions of the
              names to exclude, one name per line.  E.g., for a  backup  named
              unix  of  the  whole  Unix  filesystem  it may be a good idea to
              exclude the temporary files from /tmp and /usr/tmp.  A  possible
              exclude file unix.exclude might then contain
              Please consult grep(1) for regular expressions.

              Files  in  this  directory  are used to store listings of backup
              volumes made by tob.  These files are managed internally by tob.
              Each  backup  volume  has  one associated list file. It contains
              information about name and path of each file, the time the  file
              was  last  changed, its owner, group and permissions, the inode,
              and the number of hard links that point to it.

              On Debian GNU/Linux, more  documentation  about  tob  is  stored
              here.  Please  see  the  text  file tob.txt.gz or the postscript
              version for a detailed description of tob.

              On Debian GNU/Linux, several examples for tob resource files are
              stored here.


       Stephen  van  Egmond <>, based on previous work
       by Karel Kubat <>.


       Dirk Eddelbuettel <>.


       tar(1), afio(5), grep(1).

                              September 15, 2002