Derek Broughton news at
Wed Aug 8 16:27:02 UTC 2007

Nigel Ridley wrote:

> Derek Broughton wrote:
>> Matthew Flaschen wrote:
>>> Neil Winchurst wrote:
>>>> Yes, I thought about that, but I was told by the guys in my local
>>>> computer shop (they made up my computer for me) that flash drives are
>>>> not meant to be used for back-ups. Personally I don't see why not.
>>> Depending on how often you backup, because flash drives have a limited
>>> number of write cycles.
>> Yeah, but isn't that usually figured in terms of thousands (or tens of
>> thousands)?  Which makes it considerably more reusable than a CD-RW!
>> I'd think that a flash drive would tend to make an excellent backup
>> medium, since backup is - with best practice - a low frequency task.
> You would have to think about the whole permissions thing. If you want to
> restore files - especially dot files then permissions are very important.
> A flash drive is vfat (fat32) and doesn't understand permissions.

Only as you buy it.

> Of course you could format the flash drive to ext2 (not ext3 - you don't
> need a journaling file system on a flash drive).

Of course you could - and I think ext2 is probably a good system to use
(more to the point, you don't _want_ a journaling FS on a flash drive). 
However, permissions aren't always that important.  If I want to back up my
user "derek", with uid=1000 on this system, and restore it to user "derek"
with uid=1234 on some other system, I'm going to have problems anyway.

But you're absolutely right that you have to _think_ about these things :-)

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