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Work in Progress. This is an exercise. I make no claims as to the efficacy or safety of the advice. In fact, this tutorial is incomplete and should not be used under any circumstances. This is test of the early warning system. I repeat, a test.

Clone your Ubuntu machine into abstraction

This is not the same as backing up. Making a backup of anything in today’s age of superfast Internet, quad-core processors and near unlimited storage space is old-fashioned. Trouble is, in the third world, we still have to deal with issues of bandwidth scarcity, lack of resource capacity and so on. Ordinary people can’t backup everything, and even if they did, using any number of devices, Time Machine springs to mind, the system fails if your array is stolen, if there is a natural disaster, or if simply you run out of time. Result, no backup.

So there you sit without an exact replica of your machine. Next best thing is to reduce the sum of its parts, its totality into an abstraction, with a series of awkward maneouvres which might result in a recipe for a script which presumably could resurrect your machine from the dead.

If there was an abstraction tool, capable of cloning my machine, I would use it. As of now, there doesn’t appear to be suh a device. So here is the beginning of a list of abstractions. Wish I had started out doing this to begin with, with a new installation, but with a bit of reverse engineering, I might end up with an exact replica, a clone of my own machine.

Backup Cycle

1. Backup MBR
Method One

2. Backup Grub

cp /boot/grub/menu.lst ~/new-location/menu.lst

2. Backup Software Sources

cp /etc/apt/sources.list ~/new-location/sources.list

3. Backup Markings File

4. Backup Settings.

5. Output list of installed applications
dpkg –get-selections > apps.txt

Clone Cycle

5. Author a distribution of your setup.

6. Reinstall applications from file list

dpkg –set-selections < apps.txt
dselect update
apt-get dselect-upgrade show

What have I forgotten? If you have any comments, or wish to contribute to this experiment, then please give a shout out, but under no circumstances, do I intend crashing my machine in order to find out if the plan works, at least not for now

My apps

My sources

My MBR

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