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I have /var on a separate drive and now I want to add /backup to that same drive. How would I do that?

When I installed Ubuntu, I put / on an 80 GB drive and had a 250 GB drive use /var. I want my backups to reside on the 250 GB drive since they can take up quite a bit of space.

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Do you want them as separate partitions or to link to separate paths on the same partition? – thomasrutter May 3 '12 at 5:17
Separate paths on the same partition I guess. – Mike Wills May 3 '12 at 5:23
Do You want to Mount the same device on multiple path ? If Yes, then its possible but not at all good idea. I would suggest you to link. – user59847 May 3 '12 at 5:24
I clarified some on why I am asking. – Mike Wills May 3 '12 at 5:30
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Since you specified you'd like them both to be on the same partition on that drive, I'll give you some pointers:

  1. Your existing /var mount probably mounts the entire partition, ie the root of that partition. You can therefore only do that once.

  2. You could, however, have both a /var and a /backup on that partition, ie have both of them one level down. So instead of the root of that partition being your /var, the root of your partition will contain a "var" and a "backup" directory.

    You would then need to mount that drive to one specific mount point, say /mnt/mydrive.

    Then, set up bind mounts from /var and /backup to directories within your /mnt/mydrive, eg to /mnt/mydrive/var and /mnt/mydrive/backup.

    The use of bind mounts allows you to have them in your /etc/fstab just like a normal mount, but it allows you to mount only a particular directory, not the whole partition.

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Would it mess stuff up if I add /var/backup then just create an alias at the root? – Mike Wills May 3 '12 at 13:46
That is a good idea. Keep in mind that a directory called /var/backups is commonly used by certain software, so to avoid confusing the two very similar names you may want to consider a more unique name. But that's up to you. You could also put it as a subdirectory of /var/backups. You could use it as it is there, or bind mount it to /backup as you originally wanted. – thomasrutter May 4 '12 at 1:38

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