I am running Unity on Ubuntu 12.04 and have started using the backup program. I can't find anywhere to manually remove old backups. I don't want to wait until the disk drive gets full, as it is also used for other things.

  • I have been searching around, and have found a duplicity command to delete backups older than a certain time. Is it allowable to go behind the scenes with a duplicity command, or will it muck up Ubuntu's backup system.
    – Jazz
    Jul 20 '12 at 5:48

From https://help.ubuntu.com/community/DuplicityBackupHowto:

Deleting old backups

You can invoke duplicity followed by remove-older-than and a time constraint. The example script removes backups older than one year:

duplicity remove-older-than 1Y --force ftp://FtpUserID@ftp.domain.com/etc

It is not possible to do a backup (full or incremental) and delete old files with the same command.

The Ubuntu Backup tool ist based on "Déjà Dup Backup Tool", which has duplicity as a backend.


when you go to system settings and click on the back up icon you should be presented with several options .By default ubuntu 12.04 will try to put your backups on ubuntu-one. You can also choose another location to store the backups locally. to do that, choose storage button and pick location from the drop down menu. You can also change the option of "Keep backups forever" to a month . This will automatically remove older back ups for you.You will find that option in the schedule section.

  • 1
    OK thanks, but to clarify, I am putting the backups on a drive that is used for other things, and, at the moment, there is spare space, so I have it configured to keep them forever. However, in the future I might find I am running out of space, and just want to prune the backups, once off, to make some more room.
    – Jazz
    Jul 20 '12 at 5:45

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