Bareos News

Modernizing the Bareos Integration in Relax-and-Recover (ReaR)

Overview of ReaR

Relax-and-Recover (ReaR) is an Open-Source disaster recovery and automated Linux bare metal restore solution that allows users to create a bootable rescue system and recovery media. It is highly adaptable and supports numerous backup solutions, ensuring that in the event of system failure, you can quickly and efficiently restore your data and system configurations.

Bareos: A Trusted Partner in ReaR

Bareos, an Open-Source backup solution, has been integrated into ReaR for many years. This partnership has proven its reliability, providing seamless backup and recovery operations. The continuous evolution of both ReaR and Bareos has made this integration indispensable for users who require robust disaster recovery strategies.

In 2013, Bareos decided to rely on and integrate with ReaR for Linux bare metal restore, instead of developing its own solution. This illustrates how Bareos benefits from the rich Open-Source ecosystem to achieve a best-of-breed solution for both backup and disaster recovery.

The Need for Modernization

Over the years, both software ecosystems have seen significant advancements. To keep up with these changes and to enhance the integration, Bareos GmbH & Co. KG undertook a fundamental modernization of the Bareos-ReaR integration. This initiative aimed to not only adapt to the latest features but also to improve the overall robustness and functionality of the integration.

Key Improvements in the Modernized Integration

The result of these efforts is impressive. Here are the major enhancements that have been introduced:

Support for Recent Bareos Versions

The integration has been updated to support Bareos >= 22 and preparations have been made for future versions, including Bareos 24. This ensures compatibility with the latest features and security updates of Bareos.

Enhanced Automation and Configuration

Autoconfigure Bareos Client, Job, and Fileset: Whenever possible, the system will now automatically configure the client, job, and fileset, reducing the need for manual setup and minimizing potential configuration errors. 

Fully Automated Processes: The integration can now be fully automated, streamlining the backup and recovery process and reducing administrative overhead.

Improved Usability and Security

Improved Logging Output: Enhanced logging provides more detailed information about the backup and recovery process, aiding in troubleshooting and system audits. 

Restore-Only Mode: The integration starts Bareos-Filedaemon in a restore-only mode to prevent accidental backups of the rescue system. 

Use of Systemd Unit: Utilizing a systemd unit enhances the management of Bareos services, aligning with modern Linux system management practices.

Enhanced Functionality and User Experience

Ensuring Client Functionality: The updates ensure that the Bareos client is fully functional and ready for recovery tasks. 

Simplified Code and Improved Readability: The codebase has been significantly simplified, making it easier to maintain and understand. 

Progress Information During Restore: Users can now see progress information during the restore process, providing better visibility into the operation’s status.

Removal of Untested Methods

The integration now exclusively uses bconsole, ensuring a more reliable and tested approach to backup and recovery operations.

Collaborative Effort with the ReaR Team

This modernization effort was carried out in close coordination with the Rear team, especially Schlomo Schapiro (https://schlomo.schapiro.org/) of Tektit Consulting (https://tektitconsulting.com). The collaboration ensured that the integration not only meets the technical requirements but also aligns with the user expectations and the overall design philosophy of ReaR.

Conclusion

The modernization of the Bareos integration in ReaR marks a significant step forward in ensuring reliable and efficient disaster recovery solutions. The updated integration is more robust, admin-friendly, and ready to support the latest advancements in backup technology. A big thank you to the ReaR team for their continued support and collaboration in making this possible. Bareos customers now have the option to buy “Bareos Bare Metal Restore for Linux”, to get Bareos ReaR support directly from Bareos.

Resources:

Bareos: A Sustainable Backup Solution

When discussing backup solutions, environmental impact might not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, with data centers playing a crucial role in our digital infrastructure, it’s essential to recognize their significant environmental footprint. Datacenters contribute substantially to global energy consumption and carbon emissions, making sustainable practices in data management more critical than ever.

The Environmental Impact of Data Centers

Data centers are energy-intensive facilities, consuming about 1% of the world’s electricity and generating a similar proportion of CO2 emissions. As our reliance on digital infrastructure grows, so does the need for sustainable practices.

How Efficient Backup Solutions Contribute to Sustainability

Implementing efficient backup solutions like Bareos can make a notable difference. 

Here’s how:

  1. Energy Efficiency: Bareos optimizes storage requirements, reducing the energy needed for data retention and minimizing the physical space required for servers. Efficient data management translates to lower power consumption and cooling needs.
  2. Resource Optimization: Being open-source, Bareos allows customization and fine-tuning to meet specific needs, avoiding overloading and unnecessary resource use. This tailored approach ensures optimal resource utilization.
  3. Reduced E-Waste: By extending the life cycle of existing hardware through optimized software performance, Bareos helps in reducing electronic waste. The longer hardware serves its purpose, the less frequently it needs to be replaced, leading to fewer discarded devices. 
  4. Saving Energy in Electronic Device Production: The energy used in manufacturing electronics is significant and often overlooked. Extending device lifespans saves more energy than reducing operational energy alone.
  5. Carbon Footprint Reduction: Efficient backup processes mean fewer data transfers and storage activities, directly impacting the amount of energy consumed. This efficiency helps in lowering the overall carbon footprint of data management practices.

The Impact of Efficient Storage Solutions

According to the IDC Global Datasphere report, 62% of the 8.3 ZB of data stored globally in 2021 was on HDDs. Migrating 60% of this data to tape storage could cut CO2e emissions by 72 million tons, a 57% reduction. Tape storage is more energy-efficient than HDDs, significantly lowering energy consumption and carbon emissions, highlighting the importance of optimized data storage strategies for sustainability.

Why Bareos is the Better Choice

Unlike many proprietary solutions, Bareos is transparent, customizable, and highly efficient. Its open-source model optimizes resource use, reducing overhead and costs while enhancing performance. Bareos is the superior choice for businesses seeking an effective backup solution.

Our Commitment to a Sustainable Future

At Bareos, we are committed to not only providing robust backup solutions but also promoting environmentally responsible practices. By choosing Bareos, you contribute to a more sustainable digital landscape. Our commitment to environmental responsibility is outlined in our Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives. Embrace the harmony of technology and sustainability with us, making our digital world greener, one backup at a time.

The Guide to Data Backup Strategies for Businesses

The Guide to Data Backup Strategies for Businesses

In today’s digital age, data is the lifeblood of any business. Whether it’s customer information, financial records, or proprietary data, losing this information can be catastrophic. Implementing a robust data backup strategy is essential to safeguard your business against data loss, damage, and cyber threats. This guide will walk you through the key components of an effective backup strategy, with practical tips and insights to help you protect your critical data.

Basic Information About Backups

When it comes to backing up data, understanding the different types of backups is crucial.

Different Types of Backups

The three main types are full, incremental, and differential backups:

  • Full Backup: This is a complete copy of all your data. While it provides the most comprehensive protection, it is time-consuming and requires significant storage space.
  • Incremental Backup: This type of backup only copies data that has changed since the last backup of any type (full or incremental). It’s faster and uses less storage but can be slower to restore, as it may require multiple incremental backups to be restored in sequence.
  • Differential Backup: Similar to incremental, but it copies all data changed since the last full backup. It strikes a balance between speed and storage usage, and restoration is faster compared to incremental backups since only the last full backup and the latest differential backup are needed.

On-Site vs. Off-Site Backups

Deciding where to store your backups is another critical aspect of your strategy. You can choose between on-site and off-site backups, or a combination of both:

  • On-Site Backups: These are stored locally, on the same premises as your primary data. They offer quick access and recovery times but are vulnerable to physical damage, theft, and local disasters.
  • Off-Site Backups: These are stored in a different location, often in the cloud. They provide protection against local disasters and physical damage but may have slower recovery times and can incur additional costs. A hybrid approach, utilizing both on-site and off-site backups, is often the most effective strategy.
    For instance, Bareos, an open-source backup solution, supports both local and remote backups, giving you flexibility and comprehensive protection.

Best Practices for Backup Strategies

Choosing the Right Backup Software and Hardware

Selecting the right tools is crucial for implementing an efficient backup strategy. Your choice of backup software should align with your business needs, offering features like automation, scalability, and ease of use.

Bareos (Backup Archiving Recovery Open Sourced) is a robust option for businesses of all sizes. It supports a wide range of operating systems and can be tailored to fit various backup needs. Compared to other solutions, Bareos stands out for its flexibility, extensive features, and security, as it’s open-source.

Having enough storage capacity and choosing reliable storage media is essential for an effective backup strategy. Here are some popular options:

  • Local Disk Array: Fast and reliable first stage storage, allowing quick backup and restore
  • Tape: Reliable and secure storage as it allows air-gapping, lowest cost per Terabyte
  • Cloud Storage: Offers off-site redundancy and scalability for added protection.

Each option has its benefits, and using a combination of them can offer robust data protection. Additionally, the type of data you need to back up (e.g., large files vs. billions of small files) will influence your choice of hardware and database design. Bareos allows you to customize its setup to optimize for different data types. Common in large enterprises, these solutions offer high performance, reliability, and scalability for handling large volumes of data efficiently.

Automating and Scheduling Backups

Automating your backup processes ensures that your data is regularly protected without manual intervention. Here are some best practices:

  • Frequency: Determine how often backups should be performed based on how frequently your data changes. For most businesses, daily backups are a minimum requirement.
  • Scheduling: Schedule backups during off-peak hours to minimize the impact on your system performance.
  • Retention Policies: Establish how long you need to retain backups. This will depend on your storage capacity and regulatory requirements.

Bareos offers advanced scheduling features, allowing you to automate backups and manage retention policies effectively.

Implementing the 3-2-1 Backup Strategy

One of the most reliable backup strategies is the 3-2-1 rule:

  • 3 Copies of Your Data: One primary and two backups.
  • 2 Different Storage Types: Such as local drives and cloud storage.
  • 1 Off-Site Copy: To protect against local disasters.

This strategy ensures data redundancy and increases the chances of full recovery. Using technologies like tape libraries and robots can create an airgap, adding an extra layer of security against cyber threats.

Security Measures for Backup Protection

Air-Gapping Your Backups

Air-gapping is a security measure that physically isolates a copy of your data from the network, making it inaccessible to hackers and ransomware attacks. This technique involves creating an offline copy of your backups that is not connected to any network, thus providing an “air gap.” Air-gapped backups are often stored on removable media such as tape drives or external hard drives, which can be disconnected and stored securely. This approach ensures that even if your network is compromised, your critical data remains protected.

Regular Testing of Backup Integrity

It’s not enough to just create backups; you must also ensure they are reliable and can be restored when needed. Regularly test your backups by performing trial restorations. This helps you verify the integrity of your backups and ensures that your data can be recovered in case of an emergency.

Recovering from Data Loss

A disaster recovery plan (DRP) outlines the steps your business will take to recover from a catastrophic event. It should include:

  • Risk Assessment: Identify potential threats to your data.
  • Recovery Objectives: Define your Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and Recovery Point Objective (RPO). RTO is the maximum acceptable amount of time to restore a system after a disaster, while RPO is the maximum acceptable amount of data loss measured in time.
  • Backup and Restoration Procedures: Detailed instructions on how to restore data from backups.
  • Communication Plan: Procedures for communicating with employees, customers, and stakeholders during a disaster.

Bareos provides features that support the creation and execution of a robust DRP, ensuring rapid data recovery and minimal downtime.

Conclusion

Implementing a comprehensive data backup strategy is vital for protecting your business against data loss. By understanding the different types of backups, choosing the right storage solutions, and following best practices for scheduling and testing, you can ensure your data is always safe. Solutions like Bareos provide robust and flexible options to meet your backup needs, helping you build a resilient data protection strategy.

Github Issues replaces Mantis


The Bareos project will use GitHub Issues (instead of Mantis).

In 2012, the Bareos project was launched with a commitment to fostering close integration with the community and leveraging advanced automation services. However, a span of 10 years provides ample opportunity for evolution and innovation. Over the course of this decade, we have continuously adapted and modernized our infrastructure.

Among other changes, we have made significant advancements in the following areas:

Code:
Since the beginning, we have relied on git and GitHub as our code repository. Initially, we accepted contributions in the form of emails and patches. However, for some time now, we have exclusively transitioned to using Pull Requests, automated tests, and a structured review process.

Package Building:
Originally, our package building process relied heavily on the powerful https://openbuildservice.org/ for Linux packages. However, we had to resort to different approaches for other platforms. Therefore we have transitioned to using Jenkins, Build-Worker, and Docker containers for all platforms. This transition has been seamless for end-users, but it allows us to create packages for all our platforms within the same streamlined process. Additionally, this optimized process tailored for Bareos operates much faster.

Bugtracker:
Since our inception in 2012, we have utilized Mantis as our bug tracker, and for the most part, we were satisfied with its performance. However, due to a tighter integration with our other processes, we have decided to migrate to Github Issues in April 2024. We anticipate that this transition will result in a better integration of error reporting, development, and pull requests.

Support:
In addition to our internal processes, we utilize https://zammad.org as a ticketing system for customers with support contracts.


Ransomware Protection: How to Safeguard Your Data with Advanced Backup Solutions

Discover essential strategies for ransomware protection. Learn how Bareos backup solutions fortify your defenses against digital threats, ensuring your data’s security and accessibility.

In an era dominated by digital threats, ransomware emerges as a formidable adversary. This malicious software encrypts your files, effectively holding them hostage until a ransom is fulfilled. The threat it poses to both individuals and organizations is profound. Yet, the battle is not lost. Armed with the right strategies and tools like Bareos, securing your valuable data against ransomware is within reach. Ransomware encrypts the victim’s files, rendering them inaccessible. The perpetrators then demand a ransom for data restoration. It commonly infiltrates systems through phishing emails, malicious websites, and software vulnerabilities.

Essential Ransomware Protection Strategies:

1. Cybersecurity Awareness: Empower your team with the knowledge to identify phishing attempts and malicious links. Regular cybersecurity training enhances your first line of defense.

2. Advanced Security Software: Deploy security solutions encompassing antivirus, anti-malware, and firewall protections to destroy ransomware attempts.

3. Reliable Backups: Keep updated backups of critical data. Bareos backup solutions provide automated, secure backups that are pivotal for business continuity post-ransomware.

4. Software Updates: Ransomware exploits outdated software. Consistently updating your systems and applications fortifies your defenses.

5. Access Control: Limit access to essential data, applying the principle of least privilege to reduce risk.

6. Disaster Recovery Planning: A disaster recovery plan is indispensable. It should detail response actions for ransomware incidents, including data isolation and restoration.

7. Network Segmentation: Dividing your network limits ransomware spread, safeguarding sensitive data across various segments.

8. Email Security: Implement email filtering to eliminate phishing threats, a primary ransomware conduit.

Among all strategies for combating ransomware, regular backup is paramount. It is the only method that guarantees data recovery after an attack. Other preventative measures aim to block attacks, but they do not guarantee data recovery in the event of a breach. Regular, secure backups, using solutions like Bareos, safeguard your data by preserving it in its pre-attack state and making it recoverable in all scenarios. This not only enhances your defense, but also effectively renders ransomware demands ineffective, demonstrating backups as the ultimate defense in your data protection strategy.

Bareos is Your Ally in Ransomware Protection

Bareos leads in data protection, offering an adept backup and recovery system designed to counter ransomware. It automates your data backups with features like data encryption and effortless recovery, positioning Bareos as an indispensable ally in ransomware protection.

Facing ransomware doesn’t mean conceding defeat. With proactive strategies and dependable tools like Bareos, you can shield your data from threats and ensure operational resilience. It’s more than a technical safeguard—it’s a strategic business imperative.

Implement these protective measures today and take control of your data security.

Are you interested in bolstering your defenses with Bareos? Reach out us now to explore how our backup and recovery solutions can secure your data against ransomware and other cyber threats.


World Unplugging Day! 🌿

In our always-on digital life, it’s refreshing to hit the pause button. Bareos keeps your data safe, giving you the perfect reason to unplug without worries. Spend your day reconnecting with the joys outside the digital sphere – nature, loved ones, or a good book. Embrace the peace of mind, knowing everything digital is secure back home with us. See you offline! #WorldUnpluggingDay #DigitalDetox #Bareos #Enterprise #Backup #OpenSource


Bareos expert circle Q1/2024

Dear customers and partners,

With organizations around the world adopting open source strategies Bareos delivers highly scalable backup & archiving solutions for SMB and enterprises. While trying to have an excellent documentation of our product, we’d like to offer an interactive Q&A session for you with our experts: founders, consultants, and support specialists on a variety of topics.

Topics include:
deployment use cases / best practises
infrastructure options (flash arrays, tape libraries and cloud)
availability & resilience
design automation / tool integration / deployments / monitoring

This online event takes place on Thursday, March 7, 2024 at 17:00 CET / 08:00 AM PT / 16:00 GMT.

To participate, please register with corporate email via link and provide specific topics you’re interested in, please include question(s) in our registration.


Bareos Applied as Mentoring Organization in Google Summer of Code 2024


Google Summer of Code (GSoC) and Mentor Organizations

GSoC, now in its 20th year, is a global, online program focused on bringing new contributors into open source software development. GSoC Contributors work with an open source organization on a 12+ week programming project under the guidance of mentors.

Bareos as a Mentoring Organization

In 2024, Bareos applied for the first time as mentoring organization for GSoC. Here’s why you should be excited:

  • Diverse Project Ideas: Bareos has curated a list of intriguing project ideas for GSoC 2024. From enhancing backup performance to improving user interfaces, there's something for everyone. Check out the project ideas list to explore the possibilities.
  • Welcoming Community: Bareos promotes a welcoming and inclusive community. The goal is to bring new contributors into the fold.

How to Get Involved

As Bareos steps into its role as a mentoring organization, we invite you to be part of this exciting journey. If you’re a student and an open-source enthusiast, GSoC 2024 is a great opportunity to develop various skills and get involved in an important open-source project.

The next step is to check our project ideas list at https://github.com/bareos/GSoC2024/. You can also propose your own project idea there.

Important Next Items on the GSoC 2024 Timeline

  • February 21 – 18:00 UTC: List of accepted mentoring organizations will be published
  • February 22 – March 18: Potential GSoC contributors discuss application ideas with mentoring organizations
  • March 18 – April 2: GSoC contributor application period

For more information about GSoC, visit https://summerofcode.withgoogle.com/

Enhance security by hardening the Bareos filedaemon

The Bareos filedaemon (client) runs per default with administrator/root privileges in order to be able to backup all files. The Filedaemon also is able to execute scripts before and after the backups and restores. In order to perform restores, the filedaemon has the ability to overwrite all files on the client machine. While all of this is required for normal backup and restore operation, certain environments might have higher security requirements.
Bareos offers the following options are available to enhance the security and limit the power of the filedaemon:

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  • Limit the directories from where the filedaemon executes scripts. This can be achieved with the configuration directive Allowed Script Dir
  • Limit the Job Commands that the filedaemon accepts. The Allowed Job Command directive determines which of the existing job commands (backup, restore, verify, estimate and runscript) are allowed. By prohibiting the restore command, the filedaemon will not allow to do restores. Without the runscript command, no runscripts will be executed.
  • run the filedaemon as non-root user with the capabilities CAP_DAC_READ_SEARCH. This uses the Linux capabilities mechanism to run as normal user but have the the right to read all files. Writing files will not be possible in this setup.

These security measures can prevent an attacker that gained control over the bareos director to alter the files of the machines being backed up.
However, when a restore is required, the filedaemon on the client needs to be reconfigured to allow restores and/or runscripts. Alternatively, a second bareos filedaemon can be started that has a configuration that allows restores.

Usually the amount of restores is much smaller than the backups, so these measures still can enhance the security with relatively little effort and inconvenience.

SILL List 2023: Bareos once again on French reference List

France has published an updated list of recommendations for Open Source software solutions. Bareos is again included (category sauvegarde, backup) and on the SILL list 2023.
The French Ministry of Education (“ministère de l’éducation nationale”) uses Bareos on thousands of servers (map). Those servers are samba3 and samba4 domain controllers and file servers in schools and administrations worldwide.

Import and export tapes from your tape library with Bareos


Tape libraries usually offer an option to insert and remove tape cartridges. Therefore, the libraries have a number of dedicated slots (so called import/export slots or mail slots) that can be accessed from outside of the library without the danger of the operator to collide with the tape robot. Bareos supports this functionality with the bconsole commands import and export commands:

  • To import tapes into the library, just fill the import/export slots with the tapes and type import.
  • To export tapes from the library, use export volume=<volumename>
  • Tapes used by a job can be automatically exported with use of a runscript

For more details, please check the bconsole documentation about import and export console commands.

Bareos joins Open Invention Network

Bareos GmbH & Co. KG strengthens Commitment to Open Source Collaboration by Joining the Open Invention Network.

Bareos GmbH & Co. KG, a leading provider of open-source data backup and recovery solutions, proudly announces its membership in the Open Invention Network (OIN), underscoring the company’s dedication to fostering collaboration and innovation within the open-source community. The Open Invention Network is a shared defensive patent pool committed to protecting the open-source ecosystem. By joining this network, Bareos GmbH & Co. KG demonstrates its commitment to providing a secure and collaborative environment for developers, users, and partners.

Bareos updates the Release Policy for Community Binaries

Bareos was founded ten years ago to continue the Open Source nature of this enterprise grade project for backup, archiving and recovery. We are strongly committed to continuing our work in the very same spirit, and working jointly with our community. Starting with the new release (Bareos 22), we’re updating our release policy to enhance user experience, and streamline project efforts.

Graphical Interface: Bareos WebUI Modules

Bareos has a graphical tool for communicating with the Bareos Director. The WebUI is multilingual and provides detailed information about backup jobs, clients, FileSets, pools, volumes, and more. It’s also possible to start backup and restore jobs via the web interface. Our new blog series gives an introduction to the Bareos WebUI. In this second episode: introduction to the modules and their functionality.

Bareos WebUI: Graphical Interface – Installation and Configuration

Bareos has a graphical tool for communicating with the Bareos Director. The WebUI is multilingual and provides detailed information about backup jobs, clients, FileSets, pools, volumes, and more. It’s also possible to start backup and restore jobs via the web interface. Our new blog series gives an introduction to the Bareos WebUI. In this first episode: installation and configuration.

Digital Sovereignity: More Open Source for the Public Sector

On November 24, 2021, the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), the Free Democratic Party (FDP), and The Greens announced that they had reached a deal to implement the traffic light coalition. The upcoming federal government relies on Open Source to push forward the digitization of the administration—something we at Bareos embrace, of course.

Bareos Administration, Part I and II – two Workshops coming up

Our training partner Dr. Stephan Rein offers two online workshops on Bareos administration (respectively “Bareos Part I” and “Bareos Part II”) in May (suitable for European and Asian time zones, and June (suitable for European and American east cost timezones) 2021. The first course will take place on May 7, 11, 12, and 16, for a full day. The second workshop is designed as a half-day course instead: Bareos Part I (May 31-June 4, 2021, Monday through Friday) and Bareos Part II (June 8-10, 2021, Tuesday through Thursday).

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