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What the /etc/dumpdates file is

The /etc/dumpdates file enables you to keep track of backups.

It records the following information:

  • The name of the backup, which can be one of the following:
    • If you use the n option, the name you supply
    • If you use the Q option, the volume you are backing up followed by the notation /all_non_quota_files
    • If you use neither, the dump path
  • The level of the backup
  • The time of the Snapshot copy used for the backup

Reasons to update the /etc/dumpdates file

You update the /etc/dumpdates file for the following reasons:

  • You plan to perform incremental backups.

    The storage system uses the data in the /etc/dumpdates file to determine what to include in incremental backups.

  • You want to keep the history of a backup.

Principles applying to the /etc/dumpdates file

The following principles apply to the /etc/dumpdates file:

  • If the /etc/dumpdates file does not exist when you try to update it, the storage system creates it.
  • You can edit the /etc/dumpdates file manually, if needed.
  • A new backup of the same path and level overwrites the old entry.


An /etc/dumpdates file lists one backup per line. Each line contains the name of the backup, followed by the level of the backup, then the date of the backup.

/vol/vol1/ 0 Tue Jul 24 22:07:48 2001 /vol/vol0/ 0 Tue Jul 24 21:06:53 2001 /vol/vol0/etc 0 Tue Jul 24 19:06:15 2001 my_named_dump 0 Tue Jul 24 20:40:09 2001 /vol/vol0/all_non_quota_files 0 Tue Jul 24 20:54:06 2001 /vol/vol0/home 0 Tue Jul 24 21:06:39 2001 /vol/vol1/ 1 Tue Jul 24 22:08:09 2001 /vol/vol1/ 2 Tue Jul 24 22:08:20 2001 my_named_dump 1 Tue Jul 24 22:12:26 2001 /vol/vol0/home 5 Tue Jul 24 22:12:45 2001