The level option requests the dump level. Thus, to produce
a full dump, specify --level=0 (this is the default, so
--level may be omitted if its value is 0).
The --time option determines when should the backup be
run. Time may take three forms:
The dump must be run at hh hours mm minutes.
The dump must be run at hh hours
The dump must be run immediately.
You should start a script with a tape or disk mounted. Once you
start a script, it prompts you for new tapes or disks as it
needs them. Media volumes don't have to correspond to archive
files — a multi-volume archive can be started in the middle of a
tape that already contains the end of another multi-volume archive.
The restore script prompts for media by its archive volume,
so to avoid an error message you should keep track of which tape
(or disk) contains which volume of the archive (see Scripted Restoration).
The backup scripts write two files on the file system. The first is a
record file in /etc/tar-backup/, which is used by the scripts
to store and retrieve information about which files were dumped. This
file is not meant to be read by humans, and should not be deleted by
them. See Snapshot Files, for a more detailed explanation of this
The second file is a log file containing the names of the file systems
and files dumped, what time the backup was made, and any error
messages that were generated, as well as how much space was left in
the media volume after the last volume of the archive was written.
You should check this log file after every backup. The file name is
log-mm-dd-yyyy-level-n, where mm-dd-yyyy
represents current date, and n represents current dump level number.
The script also prints the name of each system being dumped to the
Following is the full list of options accepted by backup
Do backup level level (default 0).
Force backup even if today's log file already exists.
Set verbosity level. The higher the level is, the more debugging
information will be output during execution. Devault level
is 100, which means the highest debugging level.
Wait till time, then do backup.
Display short help message and exit.
Display information about the program's name, version, origin and legal
status, all on standard output, and then exit successfully.
 For backward compatibility, the backup will also
try to deduce the requested dump level from the name of the
script itself. If the name consists of a string ‘level-’
followed by a single decimal digit, that digit is taken as
the dump level number. Thus, you may create a link from backup
to level-1 and then run level-1 whenever you need to
create a level one dump.
Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License