A little while ago, I wrote a couple articles about learning why backups are important and, then, following through with the creation of said backups.  If you managed to miss them on my incredibly busy site (try not to trip on the sarcasm, there), you can read them here: Part 1 & Part 2.  Well, I am extremely glad I instituted the backup procedure when I did, because I found myself in need of those backups this week.

On Tuesday (the 22nd of November), I decided to log into my web server and run updates.  Upon logging in, I saw this message:

*** System Reboot Required ***

I may not be quoting it exactly, so I’ve probably just offended a number of rabid Linux fanatics.  But I digress…  I didn’t think the message was all that important and ran the commands that I use to update the system.

sudo apt update
sudo apt upgrade

This was The Moment.  You know the one I mean.  It was the moment that, looking back on the events, I realized I made the crucial error in judgment that started me down a Very Bad Path.

In this case, said Very Bad Path started with a web server that would not boot (i.e. FUBAR) and involved a complete re-install of my web server from the base operating system up…as in format and re-install.  During my efforts to have a working web server once again, I identified a number of deficiencies in my backup plan, and I’ve made notes.  I have yet to recreate all of my backup processes, and when I do, I’ll incorporate the notes.  Should I ever find myself in such a circumstance again, I hope the process will be much smoother.

So…the moral of the story is this.

It’s not enough just to have backups.  You must test these backups from time to time to ensure that they will actually save you…should the need arise.