Is it possible to export an entire restic repository as a tarball?

Title –
If I just tar the restic repository directory, and then later push the tarball to a different machine with restic installed, will the new restic instance be able to open the transferred tarball? Assume the password can be transferred over trivially.

Thanks in advance!

In general all repo is just a folder with some files inside. You can copy/move it to another machine and keep using without any issues. How you do it is secondary importance - tarball or not is irrelevant.

No. Restic requires access to original repo structure. But it means that only what you have to do is to unpack tarball on a destination storage.

Excellent, thanks.
Is Restic able to pull registry keys/env vars as well as files and device files?

Sorry can you explain it in more details? I am not sure I understand. Maybe give some examples what you want to achieve?

I want to back up an entire windows/linux system including installed applications, and those application installations often include changes to env vars or windows registry keys. Does restic cover those?

Restic only backups regular files and directories. It is definitely not the right tool to backup full system - guaranteed that such system when restored will not work.

I would use restic to run frequent data backups (home folder) and some other tool to backup full system. Latter frequency can be much lower. For example you can backup your home folder using restic every hour and once a month create full system image.

1 Like

Thanks, good to know! What tools would you recommend for full system backup and restoration? (in particular looking for something FOSS and that can be used to hot backup/hot restore a system).

For full system - veeam. It is not open source but has free version which is more than suitable for simple setups.

Thank you. We’re building a stack that can’t use veeam (or, in fact, any nonOSS dependencies) due to constraints on our end.

Well… maybe others know some good FOSS options.

If you need to backup entire VMs then building atop of Proxmox which is a free and open source Hypervisor could be a good bet? It includes the (also free and open source) Proxmox Backup Server which allows taking full VM/Container backups that can be restored easily.

I run all my systems on Proxmox so that I can easily restore an entire VM should I need to, while for filesystem backup I use restic (so that I can easily recover a deleted file etc without needing to do a full system restore)

Note that I am a home-user, but there’s lot of people/companies who use Proxmox for their business.

restic is for individual files with versioning - day to day backups. for disk cloning look at Clonezilla it is GPL2

I’m a fan of Drive Snapshot on Windows. It’s been around forever, is portable and will run from a WinPE disc, and can do live backups with shadow copies. Not FOSS though. I think CloneZilla would probably be your best option there.