Deja-dup, a great Backup utility

We all need to take backups from time to time. A few months ago I wrote an article about doing so using Rsync. This was a command line way and didn't have any provision for data encryption. So, while looking for a tool that would let me encrypt as well as backup data, I found this really cool GUI application deja-dup which does far more than I was looking for.

Some of the noticable features of Deja-dup are its ability to backup on Amazon S3 and to automate the backup daily, weekly or monthly. Take a look at its features list.

Deja-dup Features

 • Support for local or remote backup locations, including Amazon S3
 • Securely encrypts and compresses your data
 • Incrementally backs up, letting you restore from any particular backup
 • Schedules regular backups
 • Integrates well into your GNOME desktop


Currently, deja-dup is available only for Ubuntu and Debian. No rpm package is available so I will just show you how to install it in Ubuntu.

Install Deja-dup on Ubuntu

The version available as default in the Karmic repos is 10.2 so if you want to go for the latest stable release, you will have to add the PPA. Either run this command

[shredder12]$  sudo add-apt-repository ppa:deja-dup-team/ppa

or, open the file /etc/apt/sources.list

[shredder12]$ sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

and add these 2 lines at the bottom of the file

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/deja-dup-team/ppa/ubuntu karmic main
deb-src
http://ppa.launchpad.net/deja-dup-team/ppa/ubuntu karmic main 

Now, run update.

[shredder12]$ sudo apt-get update

The stable version you will get currently by adding this ppa is 11.1. So, if you want the latest release then go for the development packages, but I should warn you that they are under testing so could be a little buggy. In order to install those development packages. Do the procedure mentioned above using this ppa.

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/deja-dup-team/testing/ubuntu karmic main
deb-src
http://ppa.launchpad.net/deja-dup-team/testing/ubuntu karmic main 

or just run this command.

[shredder12]$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:deja-dup-team/testing

and now run the update and once its done run the following command to install it.

[shredder12]$ sudo apt-get install deja-dup

9 Comments

UbuntuLinuxHelp (not verified)
February 10th, 2010 10:04 pm
Great post! I also found that this is already in the Ubuntu repositories. Was able to "aptitude" without adding the PPA. Sweet!
UbuntuLinuxHelp (not verified)
February 10th, 2010 10:14 pm
Follow up after installing it. 1) No FTP or SFTP backup destination option. 2) Local Folder - Cannot specify which folder destination to contain the backup. 3) Cannot specify automatic backups less than daily. 4) Cannot specify backup to work at a specific time (for off-peek periods). 5) Cannot specify full vs. incremental backup types. In retrospect, (for my uses) it's not that great an application. :( But for some people, they may find it useful.
Anon Linuxer (not verified)
August 5th, 2010 11:18 am
Actually, yes you can specify what folder/directory you want the backup to go to.
Anon Linuxer (not verified)
April 30th, 2010 02:00 pm
I can't make it work with s3, and there seems to be no help. It throws an error of duplicity no network available. Why would it do this? The account is fine and works perfectly from other apps. I'd really like for something as simple as this to work right, but at the moment have no idea how to make it.
Merseph (not verified)
August 31st, 2010 11:28 pm
Great utility.. works completely as advertised. AWESOME! And also included with Fedora 14 GNOME (F14 releasing November 2010)
remote online backup (not verified)
September 9th, 2010 09:15 am
Déjà Dup is a simple backup tool. It hides the complexity of doing backups the 'right way' (encrypted, off-site, and regular) and uses duplicity as the backend. This with no doubts is an amazing tool for backup utility.
Mariner (not verified)
November 28th, 2010 04:16 pm
Instalation simple. Seems to work quite well, at least for simple backup task. For an Ubuntu beginner like me that's exactly what I need. I could access quite easily a NAS drive, which is not so easy outside Gnom.
Brandon (not verified)
January 2nd, 2011 07:13 am
I just used it for the first time. It went so smooth, I thought something went wrong! I checked my NAS & seen all the files did copy over. It has to be the easiest back up tool I've ever used!
March 3rd, 2011 04:30 am
I use Deja Dup and have found it to be very simple to use and it worked perfectly for me when I had to restore twice. The first restore was the result of a major crash and I took the opportunity to move from Ubuntu 10.4 (Wubi) to 10.10 when I reinstalled. The restore worked perfectly and I think this was easier than moving from Wubi to a separate partition and upgrading.

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