Back(up)Thing - an alternative to Crashplan (and BuddyBackup)

(Audrius Butkevicius) #21

I am not disputing that encryption is related to this or not.

I am saying what I said from the beginnig. Getting a “working group” together to decide what needs to be done and what doesn’t does nothing to get us closer to getting this implemented.

So unless a hero with loads of free time or a sponsor crops up, this whole discussion is of questionable value.

The ticket about encryption has been open for years, with a large chunk of money behind it, and suddenly having this “huddle” on the forum won’t solve it.

(Audrius Butkevicius) #22

And I am more than happy to help out someone with learning Go/around syncthings code base, especially if it results in PRs, yet I don’t think solving encryption is a good first issue, especially when there is not a clear implementation path.

(Jakob Borg) #23

“Encryption” and “receive only folders” are probably the two least suitable areas for a new contributor to attack. :slight_smile:

(Rasmus Kallas) #24

Well what should I start on?

Do you suggest, that I should learn loads of Go or learn the basics and just google everything on the way (as I have done it with other pieces of code)

I can’t deny, that I have loads of free time.

Also relinking to this: there’s loads of money behind encryption and it seems, like it was kind of dealt with in 2015? It was forked tough… I don’t have the time to check (denial of free time) right now, if the encryption is reliable both from bugs and encryption strenght.

This is going a bit offtopic so I think this should go on somewhere else?

(Antony Male) #25

You’d be best off tackling some of the easier issues: learn about Syncthing’s code base, Go, the contribution process, what you’ll be picked up on in review, etc.

Learn Go however you normally learn a new programming language.

(Audrius Butkevicius) #26

There are some tags on github talking about easy issues (I think).

If there isn’t, you can fix the ignores failing to load if there is a non-existing include (I know we’ll have to fix that soon).


I like this idea but can only contribute cash over time for development. The benefit of syncthing rather than Borg as a starting point is that most users of Crashplan and BuddyBackup appreciate:

  • the continuous nature of the backup process rather than the scheduled nature

  • the fact that P2P means easy setup with different locations rther than setting up SSH shares etc.

  • One to many copies gives a great redundant backup system

I investigated using Synchthing with Send only folders and staggered file versioning to create a suitable and robust backup strategy. Where it fell down for me was the difficulty in navigating all the various firewalls. Crashplan and BuddyBackup just “worked” out of the box.

(Jakob Borg) #28

Keep in mind that backing up is only half the story of backups, if even that. Restoration, and possibly verification, is also essential.

(Rasmus Kallas) #29

Verification as sums is probably easy to implement, syncthing advantage is that it is also open source and besides downlosding the latest version and patiently waiting 1 min for upgrade, it is ok

(Antony Male) #30

I’m sure we’ve all said this a few times, before spending the next 6 months on something…

There are other open-source backup applications which are OK, too :slight_smile:

(Rasmus Kallas) #31

Go Syncthing :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


gocryptfs ( has a reverse mode (mounts folder as a virtual encrypted folder) which can then be added to Syncthing thereby adding desired encrypted backup functionality.

Works perfectly right now, is audited ( albeit not the reverse mode, fixes security issues and file name limits of EncFS, and can be used on Windows ( through a GUI.

Command to create encrypted virtual directory:

gocryptfs -init -reverse "Directory to be encrypted" && mkdir "Virtual directory"

Mount encrypted virtual directory (recommend leaving spaces or special characters out when using echo to send password):

echo PASSWORD | gocryptfs -reverse "Directory to be encrypted" "Virtual directory"

or prompt for password:

gocryptfs -reverse "Directory to be encrypted" "Virtual directory"

Then add virtual directory to Syncthing. If need to unmount virtual encrypted directory:

sudo umount "Virtual directory"

gocryptfs is also written in go. Rather than coming up with a new solution this probably/maybe could be integrated into Syncthing if really desired.

(Rasmus Kallas) #33

Just mentioning: gocryptfs doesn’t work (without big setup to run unix), it seems that borg has something for windows, tested, but I have no idea how I would get it to run. Mainly it needs to work on Windows, since general public (not oly backing up self, but others too) use Windows


Previously stated but was a long post.

gocryptfs does work on Windows.

(Rasmus Kallas) #35

Anyone know anything about syncthing and removable drives communication?


Syncthing works perfectly with removable drives. If the drive is removed the folder in question shows an error in the GUI. When/ if the removable drive is re-added the error goes away and the synced folder in question starts syncing again.

(Bengalo Bongali) #37

If you think about it it’s quite strange though that one can use Syncthing to sync a folder on a plugged-in USB stick with a folder on a remote device, but not with a local folder on the device it’s plugged into :grin:

(Rasmus Kallas) #38

It’s actually quite logical, why it is like that: syncing local usb would be like syncing 2 folders on your desktop.

(Rasmus Kallas) #39

It got said that syncthing doesn’t want the responsibility to be a backup software… Look what I found.

(Antony Male) #40

Just another lesson: not everything you read on Wikipedia is correct!