Zentrum für Bioinformatik (ZBIT)

Laptop Backup with BackupPC

Employees of Applied Bioinformatics, Algorithms in Bioinformatics and Integrative Transcriptomics may use BackupPC to automatically back up their laptops to a server.


The BackupPC service is running on our backup server atropin. To add a new laptop to the backup system, modifications on both laptop and server are required. After successfully adding the laptop, backups are performed in regular intervals, whenever the laptop is connected to the WSI network with an ethernet cable. If no backups have been successful over a longer period of time (e.g. because the user has been using wireless networking only, or because an error has occured), BackupPC sends an automated warning message to the laptop user. Users can check their backup status in a web interface (only accessible from within the WSI) and recover lost files from there.

Configuration on the Laptop

Under OS X and Linux, the laptop needs to be configured as follows for using BackupPC with SSH/rsync:

Under Windows 7, a SSH server is needed for using BackupPC with SSH/rsync. The following steps are needed to get it running:

Under Windows XP, using BackupPC with SSH/rsync does not work. An rsync daemon from cygwin has to be used instead:

Configuration on the Server

To add a new laptop to the backup system, the following modifications on atropin are required: