mkCDrec Make CD-ROM Recovery

Make CD-ROM Recovery

mkCDrec makes a bootable (El Torito) disaster recovery image (CDrec.iso), including backups of the linux system to the same CD-ROM (or CD-RW) if space permits, or to a multi-volume CD-ROM set. Otherwise, the backups can be stored on another local disk, NFS disk or (remote) tape.

After a disaster (disk crash or system intrusion) the system can be booted from the CD-ROM and one can restore the complete system as it was (at the time mkCDrec was run) with the command


Besides recovering the exact system to the same hardware (except for a new disk perhaps) there is the possibility to make a clone of just one disk. The command


allows one to restore a disk to another disk (the destination disk does not have to be of the same size as it calculates the partition layout itself).

A thrid script,


will restore only one filesystem to a partition of your choice, and the user can choose with which filesystem the partition has to be formatted.

Linux 2.2.x, 2.4.x and 2.6.x kernels are supported, and if size of the kernel is not too big a boot floppy can be made, otherwise a 2.88 Mb boot floppy will be emulated on CD-ROM.

MkCDrec supports ext2 , ext3, minix, xfs , jfs, reiserfs file systems, LVM and software RAID (multiple devices). Each file system is backed up as a compressed tar archive (including the tar log). The compress program used is the user's choice (compress, gzip, bzip2, lzop,...)

But there is more: msdos, fat, vfat and ntfs mounted partitions are recognized and are saved as compressed dumps (on CD, tape, etc.) The user has the possibility to encrypt all backups with openssl if desired (see the configuration file for more information).

To restore your system completely just boot from the first CD-ROM made by mkCDrec and type


to restore everything from CD. Automatic Disaster Recovery and One Button Disaster Recovery are supported by mkCDrec too.

With the script one can restore selective a disk or partitions to another free disk.

mkCDrec supports IDE (inclusive ATA), S-ATA and SCSI disks, hardware RAID based disks (e.g. Compaq SMART2 Disk Array), LVM and software RAID. With an El-Torito CD-ROM you can boot from an IDE or SCSI based CD-ROM drive on IA32/64, powermac, Sparc and x86_64 GNU/Linux based computer systems.

The mkCDrec Utilities , which can make of a mkCDrec CD an added value rescue CD-ROM , are optional. See the utilities page to learn more about those tools. However, the mkCDrec Utilities have no impact on any disaster recovery or cloning functionality. MkCDrec detects the presence of the utilities automatically and will link the proper tools.

Goals & Philosophy

  • mkCDrec Project Philosophy:

    Combine a bootable rescue CD-ROM with disaster recovery scripts and optional utilities. How do we get there? With a simple command called:

  • mkCDrec is an Open Source software development project.
    By releasing mkCDrec under the GPL, IT3 Consultants is supporting the development of Open Source software.
  • mkCDrec main goal is to recover from a broken system as quickly as possible.
    Read the "introduction" to have a more in-depth knowledge on goals and prerequisites. For the impatient among us, check out the "Installation and getting started" document too.

Contributions and Feedback

We want to hear from from people using and developing for mkCDrec. We want to see your modifications and understand any problems you encounter. Please see our SourceForge site for information about contacting us, including the development mailing list.

Developers are encouraged to use our CVS tree at SourceForge.

We also have a page at

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