If you have full partition backups, you can restore your data or even your operating system when disaster strikes. The main problem is creating the partition backup. Most tools for backing up disks and partitions on Linux feel complicated. Some expect you to use commands in the terminal. Others come with old-school interfaces or use cryptic lingo. Luckily, there is Apart GTK.
Apart GTK is a GUI for partclone that allows you to clone your partitions to compressed image backups. Then, you can quickly and easily recover them from those backups whenever you wish. Let’s see how you can keep your data safe with Apart GTK.
If you’re on Ubuntu or a compatible distribution, Apart GTK is available in the default repositories. You can search and install it from the Software Center or with the following command in a terminal:
When the process completes, you’ll find Apart GTK among the rest of your apps.
Backup Your Partition
Find and open the Apart app from your Applications menu. It will prompt you to enter your administrative password. Apart GTK needs full access to your disks and partitions to be able to copy every bit of data on them.
On the left of Apart GTK, you’ll see a list of all the partitions on your system. We had many storage devices on our testing PC, so the list is long. For your PC, you may only find one or two entries.
Click on the partition you want to backup. For us, it was “sda2.”
Note: Apart GTK can’t clone the system partition of the active OS. You have to boot up with a live CD to be able to back up the system partition.
At the top of Apart GTK’s window, you’ll see details about your chosen partition, as well as two options: Clone and Restore. Click on “Clone” to back it up. Then, enter a name in the Backup name field.
You can choose the compression method you prefer from the Compression drop-down menu. Zst should be pre-selected – it’s generally the best combination of compression and speed. Next, click the pull-down menu next to the Backup directory and select the folder where you want to store your backup.
Click on “Create Image” on the bottom right and wait. The process needs some time, depending on the speed of your CPU and selected storage device’ as well as the total size of data to be backed up.
Currently, there is a bug with Apart GTK that prevents the process bar from being updated. Apart from an updating Elapsed time indication, the progress bar looked stuck (though it is running in the backend).
You can confirm that it is indeed running by checking the output file. If it is continuously increasing in size, then you know that it is running normally. Once the backup is completed, Apart GTK will update its window to inform you that the cloning process completed successfully.
Restoring your Partition Backup
Once again, it is best not to restore a backup to the active partition. Other than that, restoring your backup with Apart GTK is easy.
In Apart GTK, choose the partition where you want to restore the backup from the list on the left. Click on the Restore button on the top right of Apart GTK’s window. Select the Image File that you want to restore from.
Click on “Restore Partition” on the bottom right of Apart GTK’s window. Apart GTK will inform you that restoring your image will overwrite all data on the chosen partition. Double-check that you’ve selected the correct one and click “Restore” to proceed with your backup’s recovery.
When the process completes, you’ll find the contents of your backup in the selected partition. If it was a system partition, like in our case, by rebooting your PC to that OS, it will be back to the point when you initially made your backup.
Apart GTK is probably the friendliest tool for backing up a partition. It works for Windows partitions too, making it one of the best tools for dual-boot environments.