Home BorgBackup Vorta – A Graphical Frontend For BorgBackup

Vorta – A Graphical Frontend For BorgBackup

Backup Files And Folders With Vorta In Linux

By Karthick
Published: Last Updated on 5.6k views

This article is about how to install and use Vorta, a graphical frontend for BorgBackup application. If you are new to using the borg backup tool, please take a look at our guide on how to use borg backup before proceeding with this guide.

What is Vorta?

As you may already know, Borg is an opensource, deduplication backup program that offers a lot of features. Since BorgBackup is purely a commandline tool, it is quite difficult to remember all the commands.

Having a GUI client like Vorta will make your life easy when working with borg.

Vorta is a GUI desktop client for BorgBackup. Using Vorta, you can easily integrate the Borg application to your favorite desktop environment. No need to memorize the commands. Everything can be done via a simple graphical interface!

Vorta uses Borg as a backend to take encrypted, deduplicated, and compressed backups with couple mouse clicks. You can backup the data to local or remote drives, your own system and even to the cloud using BorgBase hosting service.

You can view the archives and restore files from one place. You can also create multiple profiles to group source folders, backup destinations and schedules.

Vorta will work on any system that supports Qt and Borg. It is completely free, open source and multi-platform application. It works well in Linux and macOS. Windows is not completely supported yet by Borg.

Without further ado, let us go ahead and see how to install Vorta in different flavors of Linux and how to backup and restore files using Vorta.

Install Vorta In Linux

The common way to install Vorta irrespective of your Linux distribution is through the python package manager PiP.

Depending on the version of PiP, you can use any one of the following commands to install Vorta.

$ pip install vorta

Or,

$ pip3 install vorta

Vorta can also be installed through flatpak.

$ flatpak install flathub com.borgbase.Vorta
$ flatpak run com.borgbase.Vorta

Vorta is packaged for popular Linux operating systems, so you can install Vorta using the default package managers.

For Debian/Ubuntu and its derivatives run the following command:

$ sudo apt install vorta

On Fedora and other RPM-based systems, install Vorta from the copr repository like below:

$ sudo dnf copr enable luminoso/vorta
$ sudo dnf install vorta

Vorta is available in AUR. You can install Vorta in Arch Linux, and its variants like EndeavourOS and Manjaro Linux, using AURH helper tools like Paru or Yay.

$ paru -S vorta

Or,

$ yay -S vorta

On Solus:

$ sudo eopkg it vorta

Setting Up Backup Repository

In borg terms, snapshots will be referred to as archives, and storage areas for these archives are referred to as repositories. Initialize a repository where your archives will be stored.

Under Repository tab -> Repository -> Initialize New Repository.

Initialize New Repository
Initialize New Repository

It will open a new window, which will prompt you to choose a backup repository location along with a passphrase and encryption type.

Set Repository Location and Borg Passphrase
Set Repository Location and Borg Passphrase

If you are setting up a remote repository, then you have to choose a remote repository (username@hostname:/path/to/repo) instead of the local repository path.

Remote Repository
Remote Repository

Remember the passphrase, whenever you try to access this repository, you will be prompted to enter this passphrase. You can also skip setting passphrase.

Click on the Advanced tab where you can set the encryption type for your repository. I have chosen "None" for testing purposes but it is not recommended.

Choose Encryption
Choose Encryption

You can also choose what type of compression algorithm to be used for the archived data. I am choosing LZ4 which is the default compression algorithm.

Choose Compression
Choose Compression

Choosing Source Data

Go to the Sources tab where you will have a bunch of options to work with. You can add or remove directories or files. You can also create an exclude pattern in its respective tab. When you are running the backup, the matched pattern will skip the file or directory to be skipped.

I have created a directory named "/home/karthick/borg/source" and added some files to it which will be used as my source directory and it will be backed up.

Setting Source Data
Setting Source Data

Now start the backup by clicking "Start Backup". Wait for the backup to be completed and you will get backup stats along with status messages like as shown below.

Backup data using Vorta
Backup data using Vorta

List Of Backups

You might have taken more snapshots for a repository and you can see the list of snapshots under the "Archives" section.

By default, the archive will be saved in the name "{hostname}-{now:%Y-%m-%d-%H%M%S}". It will be easy to find the backup date and time from the archive name or through the Date column.

List Of Archives
List Of Archives

Difference Between Archives

Before restoring the data, you should know which archive holds the file or directory that you wish to restore and what version is stored. You can use "Diff" section to compare two archives.

Diff Option
Diff Option

Under the "Archives" tab, press "Diff" which will launch the dialog box from where you can select two archives to compare.

Compare Difference Between Two Archives
Compare Difference Between Two Archives

Like as shown in the above image, select two archives and press "Diff". You will get a window like below where you can get the difference. In my case, two files are deleted before taking the second backup.

Difference Output
Difference Output

Rename Archives

Renaming an archive is pretty simple through Vorta. Select an archive from the archives tab and press "Rename" as shown in the below image.

Rename Archive
Rename Archive

It will prompt you to enter the new name for the archive and once you press "OK" the archive name will be updated.

Prune Archives

Prune will allow you to retain a certain number of archives and clean the rest. Depending upon how your backup is set up (Yearly, Monthly, Daily, Weekly, Hourly), you can choose to retain N number of copies.

You can also apply prune to archives that start with certain prefixes. Under "Prune Prefix", you have to set what should be the prefix of your archive.

Prune Archives
Prune Archives

Extract Data From Archive

There are two ways to restore data using Vorta. You can either choose "Extract" which will extract the particular data alone to the given directory or "Mount" which will mount the archive as the file system and we need to manually copy the data to wherever required.

Extract and Mount Option
Extract and Mount Option

Let’s try to extract some data. I have selected an archive and chosen "Extract". It will open a window and you have to select what should be extracted. In my case, I have selected two files like shown below.

Files To Be Extracted
Files To Be Extracted

It will prompt you to choose the destination directory and the data will be extracted.

Extracted Data
Extracted Data

Another option to restore the data is to mount the repository and copy the data manually from it. Select the archive and press "Mount".

Now it will prompt you to choose the destination directory where the archive will be mounted. I have created a directory called "Extract_Here" on my desktop where the archive will be mounted.

Mounted Archive
Mounted Archive

Now you can copy the data wherever you want in the file system.

To unmount the archive, you can choose the "Unmount" option.

Unmount Archive
Unmount Archive

Delete An Archive

If you wish to delete an archive from the repository you can choose the archive from the archives tab and press "Delete" like shown below.

Delete An Archive
Delete An Archive

Schedule Backups

Vorta has a built-in scheduler and you can use it to automate your backups. Here I am setting my backup to run daily at 12:59 PM. You can also choose "prune" old archives after running each automatic backup.

Schedule Backups
Schedule Backups

Export and Import Profile

You can export the profile which will be saved as a .json file and later import it to retain all the settings.

Export Profile
Export Profile

Choose the export icon like shown above. It will prompt you to enter the name for your json file and save it.

Json Output
Json Output

Now you can import the json file to retain the profile settings. I am deleting the default profile and then importing it.

Delete Default Profile
Delete Default Profile

Now press "Import from file" and choose the json file you exported. Now all your settings and backup data will be imported.

Import Profile
Import Profile

Conclusion

In this article, we have discussed how to install and use Vorta in Linux. We have not covered the core functionality of the borg backup tool in this article but only about vorta usage so it is better to start with knowing how to use borg backup and then use vorta.

Resources:

You May Also Like

4 comments

David January 5, 2022 - 8:56 pm

Been using Vorta on my desktop. Works great.

Reply
mehdi January 13, 2022 - 7:45 pm

Thanks, Didn’t know about Borg too, great tool. Thanks for introductions.

Reply
PU May 2, 2022 - 12:46 pm

Would like to see Vorta as a system backup tool as well? Not only file backups.
Have not seen any solution, some discussions on root problems, but…

Reply
sk May 2, 2022 - 1:41 pm

Yeah. We already have Timeshift for system-level backups. https://ostechnix.com/how-to-backup-and-restore-linux-system-with-timeshift/

Reply

Leave a Comment

* By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. By using this site, we will assume that you're OK with it. Accept Read More