Boot into Duplicati via CD or disc on key?

Just installed latest version on linuxmint 19, was wondering if my hard drive won’t boot, can I get Duplicati to boot from CD or disc on key to restore operating system? If yes, how and what to put on these external devices?
Thank you
Dan

Hello @danost and welcome to the forum!

I’m not aware of anything shipped by Duplicati that does that, but WinPE and duplicati as Disaster recovery solution was a query about a build-your-own approach that might cover some of the things one would need.

Another approach (because you run Linux) might be to see if you can find something Linux-based. Though these ideas are just thoughts (not tried, not even well-researched), you could possibly just build a recovery system on some read-write USB medium with a standard Duplicati install, or do the install should need arise.

A live ISO approach might be more iffy unless the writes that Duplicati will want to do can be done somehow.

On Linux, Duplicati will definitely need Mono, and sometimes the latest works more reliably than the distro’s. For finding other needs, one approach might be to try an install and see what dependencies get brought in.

One alternative approach in case of drive loss would be to reinstall the OS conventionally, and restore data using Duplicati. In either case, please note that the local Duplicati database disappeared with the drive, and recreating it from destination files is slower than some like (especially if they recreate their entire database).

For a simple non-boot (as opposed to dead drive), there might be other fixes which could be attempted first. Even if boot can’t be restored, a live CD copy of hard drive data to local device might offer a quick recovery, especially if your only Duplicati backup is on the Internet somewhere for extra safety and historical versions.

Are there any preparatory steps that could help speed this up if (when) something fails catastrophically?

Some people run a second Duplicati backup after the main one to backup the database from the main one (find the path from the job Advanced --> Database menu), but it’s an awkward multi-step process to restore that database in order to get the main restore going. Restore --> Direct restore from backup files should be faster than a full database rebuild to simply get files restored. Spend time later getting the backup back up.

Database backup question was looking to not do two Duplicati runs, but backup the database in its entirety, which possibly isn’t a whole lot worse – databases often have scattered changes that don’t deduplicate well.

Some people have local backups that they then sync remotely, or some people clone-and-change Duplicati backups for similar effect. Internet downloading can definitely be slower than accessing the data over LANs, where Duplicati (rather than the link) can become the limiting factor on how quickly the data can get moved.

Keeping backup size and versioning somewhat limited (or doing two backups, one for urgent uses) will help.

Some people are happy enough with some delay. You could test yours to see if it becomes too slow for you.

Don’t attempt to use Duplicati to protect the operating system itself. If you want bare metal recovery you should use another solution for that. Personally I use Macrium Reflect for image level backup so I can do a bare metal restore, and it includes the ability to create a Windows PE boot disk for this purpose.

Duplicati is great for file level backups of just your data. I don’t use Duplicati to back up OS or program files.