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Partclone, like the well known Partimage, can be used to back up and restore a partition while considering only used blocks. In Arch Linux Partclone can deal with the following file systems: ext2, ext3, ext4, reiserfs, hfs+, fat and ntfs.


Partclone is available in the AUR as Template:Package AUR and Template:Package AUR

Using Partclone with an ext4-formatted partition

To backup without compression:

partclone.ext4 -c -s /dev/sda1 -o ~/image_sda1.pcl

To restore it:

partclone.ext4 -r -s ~/image_sda1.pcl -o /dev/sda1

This time, backup with compression:

partclone.ext4 -c -s /dev/sda1 | gzip -c > ~/image_sda1.pcl.gz 

(for maximum compression use "gzip -c9")

Restore it:

zcat ~/image_sda1.pcl.gz | partclone.ext4 -r -o /dev/sda1