Incremental or differential backup

Hi Everybody,
I’ve search on forum or google but I didn’t see anything that help me.
I’m trying to use rclone to backup data locally or in cloud service. Now I’m using a linux box with shared folder that the users use. I’d like to make a daily backup starting from a full for the first day and continue with differential until the end of week, and cycle should be restart.
There are some constraint with many cloud service that does not accept server side command therefore is not possibile to use any move command.

day 1 - Suppose I have a local data (A), I copy all to cloud on remote path day1 (B)
day 2 - I should compare remote path (B) with local data (A) and copy new/changed to remote path day2 ©
day 3 - I should compare remote path (B) with local data (A) and copy new/changed to remote path day3 (D)
and so on , this should be the concept of differential backup.

Now I perform the following command:
day 1 - rclone copy ${LOCAL_PATH} ${REMOTE}/Backup01 (work fine)
day 2 - rclone copy ${LOCAL_PATH} ${REMOTE}/Backup01 --backup-dir ${REMOTE}/Backup02
this put the difference on day 1 , no good
I’ve tried to switch REMOTE
day 2 - rclone copy ${LOCAL_PATH} ${REMOTE}/Backup02 --backup-dir ${REMOTE}/Backup01
this copy everythings on day2, seems a full backup , no good

I miss something. It is possibile to check the file on 2 specific dir and put the difference on another?

I hope it is clear.
Many thanks

I don’t think what you’re looking for is possible with rclone. It is a sync/clone tool first and foremost. You can do as you said and create backup-dirs but those will hold any replaced files and not a differential that you’re looking for. Something like restic would do what you want and can use rclone as a backend within restic.

Thanks, I’ll check what you say.


Just to double check that I got you right. Please assume that I have an streaming file which is getting bigger and bigger over time. Using RClone I want to back it up to a mounted Google Drive. Would be there anyway upload the file to the Google Drive in an incremental manner?


Rclone will back up the streamed file in its entirety each time it is run. You can use rclone with restic if you want a more incremental approach.

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