cpio utility is another traditional UNIX program. It is an excellent general-purpose program for moving data from one place to another and, as such, can serve well as a backup program.
The behavior of
cpio is a bit different from
cpio reads the names of the files it is to process via standard input. A common method of generating a list of files for
cpio is to use programs such as
find whose output is then piped to
find /home/ | cpio -o > /mnt/backup/home-backup.cpio
This command creates a
cpio archive file (containing the everything in
home-backup.cpio and residing in the
find has a rich set of file selection tests, sophisticated backups can easily be created. For example, the following command performs a backup of only those files that have not been accessed within the past year:
find /home/ -atime +365 | cpio -o > /mnt/backup/home-backup.cpio
There are many other options to
find); to learn more about them read the
find(1) man pages.