Ubuntu 20.04 Atop ZFS+Zsys Will Take Snapshots On APT Operations

Written by Michael Larabel in Ubuntu on 7 March 2020 at 10:30 AM EST. 37 Comments
Ubuntu 20.04 is coming out next month and will be the first LTS release with Ubuntu desktop ZFS support available for the root file-system after it was made easy-to-deploy the Ubuntu desktop on ZFS last cycle. One of the areas being expanded upon with the ZFS support has been Ubuntu's Zsys daemon for offering extra functionality for ZFS-based setups.

Zsys has been tacking on extra functionality with time and one of the latest for Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is triggering ZFS file-system snapshots on APT package management operations.

Zsys will trigger ZFS snapshots when APT upgrade/install/remove operations take place. This in turn could allow for system rollback type setups should any issues occur following those package transactions. The support in Zsys was added and part of the new Zsys 0.4.1 release for Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. Zsys has also been promoted to the main Ubuntu package archive for 20.04 Focal.

The concept of file-system snapshots on package transactions isn't anything new, but the first time we're seeing it with a Linux distribution and ZFS On Linux. A decade ago Fedora worked on Btrfs snapshots with RPM/Yum operations for system rollback abilities in turn tied in with the GRUB boot-loader. SUSE/openSUSE has also supported snapshots with Btrfs for some years.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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