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Home » » Bastrama is a command-line tool to manage backup files.

Bastrama is a command-line tool to manage backup files.

Bastrama - Backup Strategy Manager
Bastrama is a command-line tool to manage backup files that are stored on random access memory (eg. hard drives). It implements an infinite grandfather-father-son strategy by deleting a defined subset of the backup files, therefore saving storage space while still keeping some of the older backups in case something went wrong (and needs to be restored from) a long time ago.

The idea is: Bastrama lets you run full daily backups to hard drive and you will just never run out of space. - Of course you'll have to do the backups yourself (using the backup tool of your choice). Bastrama is just managing the resulting backup files.


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Backup Strategies.
From you backup files, numbered linear starting from 0, Bastrama builds a "tree", where every node has n children. Then from every level of the tree, Bastrama keeps the latest k files. The rest is deleted.
Here are some charts to make it clear. A sequence of backups is drawn from left to right, numbered from 0 to 68, where 0 denotes the oldest backup and 68 the latest (eg. "today's"). Green files are kept, gray ones are deleted.
n=2, k=2
Chart for n=2, k=2

n=2, k=4
Chart for n=2, k=4

n=3, k=3
Chart for n=3, k=3

n=3, k=6
Chart for n=3, k=6

It can be seen that the oldest and the latest backup are always kept. Between them, the probability of a backup being kept decreases exponentially with its age.
As a consequence, the required storage space increases only logarithmically over time, which is very, very slow. (This is assuming, that the later backup files aren't larger than the older ones.).
An example: After 10000 backup cycles with a n=3, k=3 strategy, 18 files are kept:
file kept age
# 10000 0 cycles
# 9999 1 cycles
# 9998 2 cycles
# 9996 4 cycles
# 9993 7 cycles
# 9990 10 cycles
# 9981 19 cycles
# 9963 37 cycles
# 9936 64 cycles
# 9882 118 cycles
# 9801 199 cycles
# 9720 280 cycles
# 9477 523 cycles
# 8748 1252 cycles
# 8019 1981 cycles
# 6561 3439 cycles
# 4374 5626 cycles
# 0 10000 cycles

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