Ruin The assorted ramblings of Brendan Tobolaski

Backups gone awry

I recently moved hosting providers for my sites. This in itself isnʼt particularly interesting. I had thought that they would automatically charge me for each month’s of service but, that turns out to not be the case. So, when my invoice for mid April came in, I didnʼt pay it which, resulted in my hosting being suspended. Again, this isnʼt particularly interesting. When I paid for this invoice, my server didnʼt quite come back correctly. This shouldnʼt have been an issue, all of my siteʼs content is backed up using tarsnap.

Restoring should have been a relatively simple process. I just needed to copy the tarsnap key to the new server, install tarsnap and then run the restore command. I checked 1Password for the key and, oh, crap the key wasnʼt there. I quickly searched my desktopʼs drive and didnʼt find anything. Shit. I guess I need to rebuild the site by hand. Luckily (and sadly) I havenʼt written very much recently. Everything Iʼve written prior to November of last year. The rest of the things Iʼve written were easy to pull out of Googleʼs cache.

While I was able to recover all of my writing, it wasnʼt without a big time commitment and pain. I also lost quite a number of old projects that I only had in the git repository on the server. This isn’t a huge loss as I wasnʼt doing anything with these repositories but, it still stings. The “moral” of the story is to test your backups in the worst possible scenario. Make sure that you everything that you need to do the restore.