Newb question re incremental backups

I searched and I looked at the FAQ (and also the location) but I still haven’t quite found an answer to this.

Is Syncthing capable of doing incremental syncs? I know there’s a difference between syncs and backups, but what I’m hoping to find is something like Timeshift, where you have a structured programme of snapshots, but which is cleverer than Timeshift.

I believe Timeshift uses rsync, and does not have the ability to respond to file system events (creation, deletion or modification of files), which seems like a great strength of Syncthing. As far as I can work out, you also can’t use Timeshift to sync arbitrary locations, or apply filters, for example: it’s either “my system” or “my system plus my home directory”.

The obvious value of such a programmed snapshot arrangement is that in the event of something untoward or catastrophic happening (massive inadvertent deletion of files, ransomware), you can then track back in time to a snapshot before all that happened, (and perhaps even salvage selected files from more recent snapshots).

Syncing is always incremental, in that only changes are sent. However Syncthing doesn’t do any form of snapshotting and isn’t a backup tool in that sense. If you sync to a file system that supports snapshots then you can use that.

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Thanks. Sorry, my knowledge of file systems is too inadequate to know how a file system might help provide a solution. Any pointer for me to read up on?

Zfs/btrfs filesystems support snapshotting.

Thanks. Yes, I’ve heard of btrfs but didn’t know you could use it for snapshotting. I’m not sure about its status, i.e. whether it is yet stable enough for trouble-free use. I just did a search for what people have been saying over the past year: there still appear to be wildy differing views. Zfs: know nothing about it. I’ll look into these though.