Further to my posts (part I and part II) about my diy USB NAS, I am writing this post in order to show you how easy it is to get various backups with rsync.

But first let me explain you how I store my data:

Desktop PC hard disk (WD Black 1T)

This is the disk that stores my Linux home. This is also the primary location of my music and pictures.

diy USB NAS (with a WD Red 3T)

This storage has a complete backup of my home, plus some other stuff I keep there as a primary location (photography webinars, stuff about my job, series etc.. - I don’t want all this stuff on my home drive).

I use many samba shares (one for music, another for pictures, a third for webinars etc..) in order to divide all these data so that it will be easier for me to choose what to further backup etc..

USB WD Mybook 2T

This is an old WD my book disk that I use in order to backup the important data from my NAS.This disk is kept at a different location and I bring it home once a month only to get the NAS backup.

To sum up:

For the data I really care (music, pictures and my Linux home files) I have three copies:

  1. on the hard disk of my desktop PC
  2. on my NAS
  3. on the disk (Mybook) that keeps the NAS backup

For the data I care less (ex. my collection of webinars) I have two copies:

  1. on my NAS
  2. on the disk (Mybook) that keeps the NAS backup

For the data I don’t care (movies, series etc..), I have one copy:

  1. on my NAS

But let’s see what I do in order to backup them.

Rsync commands

In order to backup my music (and everytime I want to add an album on the MPD library - Archphile only sees my NAS), I use the following command:

rsync --progress --stats -r -l -D --update --delete-after /home/satan/Music/ /mnt/ddwrt/music/

In order to backup my pictures I use a similar command:

rsync --progress --stats -r -l -D --update --delete-after /home/satan/Pictures/ /mnt/ddwrt/images/'

For the rest of my home data I use the following command (with different options to preserve ownership, permisssions, etc..):

rsync --progress --stats -Dgloprtg --update --delete-after --exclude ".local/share/Trash" --exclude "/.cache" --exclude "/Music" --exclude "/Pictures" /home/satan/ /mnt/ddwrt/backup/

For these three commands, I use aliases in .bashrc. In order to take these backups, I just type syncmusic, syncpic or synchome.

All three commands are run very frequently, so that the NAS has fresh copies of my data.

Once a month, I bring the third disk (Mybook) at home and get the NAS backup with the following script in order to choose what I want to backup:


rsync --progress --stats -r -l -D --update --delete-after /mnt/ddwrt/music/ /run/media/satan/backup_1/music/
rsync --progress --stats -r -l -D --update --delete-after /mnt/ddwrt/pictures/ /run/media/satan/backup_1/pictures/
rsync --progress --stats -r -l -D --update --delete-after /mnt/ddwrt/photography/ /run/media/satan/backup_1/photography/	
rsync --progress --stats -r -l -D --update --delete-after /mnt/ddwrt/job/ /run/media/satan/backup_1/job/
rsync --progress --stats -r -l -D --update --delete-after /mnt/ddwrt/tun/ /run/media/satan/backup_1/tun/
rsync --progress --stats  -Dgloprtg --update --delete-after /mnt/ddwrt/backup/ /run/media/mikes/backup_1/backup/

The flexibility of this very easy script, is that I choose what to backup from the NAS and this is how I exclude everything I don’t care about (ex. my series).


  • I have been using this procedure for more than one year with great success.

  • Having the bad habit of shift+delete and keeping my home on my NAS has really saved me many times.

  • I could use a cron for synchome, syncmusic and syncpic, but my NAS is not always up, so I prefer doing it manually.