I'm running Ubuntu and I'd like to create an image of my OS. Is this possible?

I used CCC on my mac, it was great it even copies everything in a logical order so it technically defrags for you.

7 Answers 7


CCC is just a fancy front-end gui for rsync. I'm not sure if there is an equivalent for linux, but if you don't mind the command line, you can do what you want there:

rsync -a -x / /media/backupdisk/

Replace /media/backupdisk/ with whatever mount point your backup disk is attached to.

If you want the backup disk to be an exact copy, add the --delete flag:

rsync -a -x --delete / /media/backupdisk/

It's true that CCC is just rsync on the inside, but there is a lot more going on inside. I tried using rsync and it's not easy to make a fully functional and bootable copy every time.

  • do you have a tutorial for making bootable backups with rsync? Oct 13, 2018 at 23:46

If you want to make an image (byte for byte) you can always use dd.

dd (Unix) - Wikipedia

  • as a matter of fact, the copy is made bootable at file system level, not a sector level, so you know who ccc works
    – user962247
    Apr 21, 2019 at 20:40
  • ccc is a live, incremental, file system based backup system, able to create bootable os instances. it is not based on 40 years old technology like dd, nor rsync. clonezilla is not even correctly spelled in english, completely unmaintained and, since it was mentioned, imagine this. i have 1TB ssd, with total used space of 100GB. i use a 256GB SSD for backup and I can always boot from it from a different machine, having 128GB SSD and transfer the entire system there. so it is not a sector level but file level (just like norton ghost used to be
    – user962247
    Apr 21, 2019 at 21:15

Use Clonezilla and make a 100% bootable copy of your drive! It works and can even handle OSX HFS+ volumes, ext4, NTFS etc. Also, it will handle Grub wery well even if the PC is dual boot (e.g. Windows and Linux).

  • 1
    Carbon Copy Cloner is able to be run as a daemon and periodically synchronise your changes to an external drive, when connected. As far as I'm aware, CloneZilla is not capable of doing this? Jan 5, 2017 at 15:18
  • 1
    dont you have to boot to clonezilla before using it? Oct 6, 2018 at 2:15
  • really?!? try cloning a 1tb ssd, with 200gb active data to another system having a 256gb ssd. let us know what they reach that level of sophistication (is clonezilla even actively maintained)
    – user962247
    Apr 21, 2019 at 21:18

The closest tool to CCC that i could find for Linux is "Timeshift". But still it's not as good as CCC, because it won't create a 1:1 clone but instead will boot up with some kind of "timeshift recovery" mode ...

In fact i went back to Clonezilla, because i really do want a 1:1 bootable clone. It's annoying i need to reboot and it doesn't do Diff-syncing. But it's still the best option that i could find.


You might wanna check out Clonezilla.
It's the one that comes close to all the other apps that I've come across online.


once you get used to different options, you can transport the whole operating system from a computer to another with rsync (not to difficult to figure out the options, especially if you are just using local backups). unlike clonzilla, dd, etc, everything is extremely fast (100 times faster than ccc) and it does do incremental backups. i think it is is fantastic tool

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