Rclone + hardlinked incremental backups (onedrive)

What is the problem you are having with rclone?

For my current NAS backup I have a rolling incremental backup where subsequent backups are hardlinked to the previous backup (cp -al) and then the source folder is rsync'd to the newest backup (the altered files are unlinked).

I tried to use the same script for a mounted onedrive but am getting the error: "cp: cannot create hard link....Function not implemented"

I guess my questions are:

  1. Is this possible, but I'm doing it wrong?

  2. Is this not possible on OneDrive but could be possible with other rclone remotes?

  3. Is this not possible with rclone?

  4. Lastly, if this is possible, I am using crypt for all files. Would this still do the copying on the remote drive or would I be effectively uploading a full backup each time?

Any help would be much appreciated, thanks.

What is your rclone version (output from rclone version)

rclone v1.52.2

Which OS you are using and how many bits (eg Windows 7, 64 bit)

Arch Linux 64bit
go ver. go1.14.4

Which cloud storage system are you using? (eg Google Drive)


The command you were trying to run (eg rclone copy /tmp remote:tmp)

Trying to run:
cp -al [source_path] [dest_path] on a mounted encrypted onedrive (rclone mount $REMOTE1 $MOUNT_PATH)

Hard links are physical things that link inodes together that don't work on most fuse file systems so you aren't doing anything wrong.


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Note that the rclone way of doing this is using rclone sync --copy-dest which will do pretty much exactly that except the identical files will be server side copied into place. You can also use --backup-dir and --compare-dest for similar workflows.

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