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OldFiles Backup Directory

OldFiles is a directory that points to a separate volume used to create a nightly backup of the complete contents of your AFS home directory. Because OldFiles is a different AFS volume than your AFS directory, it does not affect your quota.

If you want to recover a file that you accidently deleted or changed within the past day, you may be able to retrieve the older copy from the OldFiles directory. The OldFiles directory has the same protections as your home directory, except that it is read only. You can view and copy anything from your OldFiles that you can view and copy from your home directory.

Note: If more than 24 hours pass before you notice that you deleted the file, a copy of the file will no longer exist in OldFiles.

A new copy of OldFiles is made every night between approximately 6 p.m. and 4 a.m.

Using OldFiles

OldFiles is like any directory in that you can copy and list files in it, change to it with the cd command, and so forth. However, OldFiles is read-only, so you cannot make changes to any of its contents. This means you cannot use the move (mv) command to move a file from OldFiles into your home directory--you must copy it there by using the copy (cp) command.

Follow these steps to locate and copy a file from your OldFile directory to your home directory:

  1. From your home directory, type cd OldFiles and press Enter.
  2. To view a list of the files in OldFiles, type ls and press Enter or type ls -l to view a more detailed listing (including dates, etc).
  3. Locate the file that you want and use either the cp command to copy directories into your root/subdirs or use an SFTP graphical interface to drag and drop the files to the correct location. For example, to copy a file from the top level of the OldFiles directory into your home directory using the cp command, type: cp OldFiles/notes ~

If you are missing your OldFiles directory

If your OldFiles directory doesn't exist in your home directory and you need to mount it, follow these instructions to restore it:

  1. Login to unix.andrew.cmu.edu
  2. Type fs mkm OldFiles user.yourAndrewID.backup (for example, if your userid is jb11, type fs mkm user.jb11.backup)

Last Updated: 11/14/14