Crazy Backup Plan using Crashplan

-Original 7/25/2013- 

I don’t have the time left tonight to write this post proper.. so here it is really fast:

  • Hanselman rule of 3
  • 1TB to cloud from WHS Home Server v1 = expensive, no thanks.
  • BuddyBackup hit some problems with scale (possibly) (I tried them first)
  • Crashplan (free) saving the day.


Quirks / Details:

  • A Crashplan backup to a USB device, when taken over by sneakernet, can be “Imported” to seed a cross-internet backup.    The caveat is, its not so much an import, as it is a “start using this new location as the place to dump stuff and forget everything you knew before” – which is perfect.
  • Crashplan will not directly back up a network share, but if:
    • You run the Crashplan service as a user who has access to those shares
    • You create a symlink (MKLINK /D) from the hard drive to that share
    • Then CrashPlan can back it up.
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  • Crashplan Network bandwidth bottleneck + Schedule to keep relationship with work on a good side.  (And asked for permission first)
  • imageimage
  • Same 3TB Ext HD used for both a WHSv1 Shares backup and a Crashplan Backup.
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  • I had to block WHS from backing up the 3TB Ext HD to prevent needless usage of space
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Its been a fun ride.   Its not 100% synced yet .. but its more than half way there and hasn’t died yet.   Thumbs up

-Update 7/30/2013-

I can confirm that if:

  • you do a backup to a local folder on an external USB hard drive HD1 at \CrashPlan
  • you do an over-the-internet backup to a remote computer that is also saving to a USB hard drive HD2 at \CrashPlan
  • You can then sneakernet HD1 to the remote location, disconnect HD2, attach HD1 as the same drive letter
  • and Crashplan resumes just fine.  Ie, local storage and over the internet remote storage are compatible with each other.
  • Good job on the design, CrashPlan!

However, I did run into a problem at about the 900G mark:


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3 comments on “Crazy Backup Plan using Crashplan
  1. Ben Sporl says:

    Great post, I’m doing something similar, and still trying to figure out the best approach.

    Why not push all remote CP backups to your WHS? WHS is always on, something your personal computer may not be. Duplicate the shared folder for double redundancy. Or move the 3TB to your WHS, add as a non-pooled drive, then point CP backup location to the USB 3TB drive.

    One thing you’re not taking into account is if someone comes into your house and takes everything. Do you want a backup strategy to account for this scenario? I do, so I have 2 WHS servers, one at home, another at a family-members house. Each WHS backs up all local computers, then CP moves both backup and shared data back/forth to each WHS.

    A 3rd family member (not local to either WHS) has CP pointed to one WHS. This folder is not duplicated to the second WHS.

    Good luck..

  2. sunnywiz says:

    Intelligent suggestion! Thank you.

    The reason why, is this all started with me wanting an realtime offsite backup of the WHS – hence the PC that syncs WHS to an ExtHD which then gets Sneakernetted.

    Btw, this setup isn’t working for me anymore. There were several months that Crashplan refused to connect between home and work.. I’ve given up on it, for the most part. If my house goes up in flames, the most recent stuff will be lost; I do have a few-month old HD sitting offsite at work.

    I’m not willing to buy another WHS at this point; I suspect I’ll go the route of a Synology someday later. I’ve had all kinds of trouble trying to rebuild machines from their WHS backups, mostly around a lack of network drivers to get access to the WHS to restore.

    Q: Are you running CP *on* the WHS? Are you talking WHSv1 or v2? I have v1; I think v2 is closer to a real O/S.

  3. […] while ago I wrote about using crashplan as my backup strategy.  That didn’t last long.  Crashplan (free) eventually stopped syncing.  I did not […]

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