WARNING: TimeVault has been unmaintained for a while


TimeVault is a simple front-end for making snapshots of a set of directories. Snapshots are a copy of a directory structure or file at a certain point in time. Restore functionality is integrated into Nautilus - previous versions of a file or directory that has a snapshot can be accessed by examining the properties and selecting the 'Previous Versions' tab.

Snapshots are protected from accidental deletion or modification since they are read-only by default. The super-user can delete intermediate snapshots to save space, but files and directories that existed before or after the deletion will still be accessible.


Here: TimeVault/ScreenShots

TimeVault Snapshot

A snapshot is a copy of a directory at a certain point in time. Snapshots don't use space for the files that haven't changed but instead simply add a link to the same data on disk. When a file (link) is deleted, the link count for the data on disk is decremented. When it reaches 0 the data is marked free in the allocation table and new data can then be written to those blocks. As most allocations of data have only 1 file that links to them data is usually freed when its file is deleted.

Only files are hard-linked this way. In most filesystems directory hardlinks are disallowed because they can cause endless recursion. Apple specifically modified their system by adding mandatory recursion detection to prevent infinite loops, ostensibly purely for their backup software.

This is a page about Time Machine and covers how it works. TimeVault has a similar method of creating snapshots.


0.7.4 Documentation:

(Possibly still some issues in this!)

After installing the .deb file, there are two steps required to complete installation:

in the command box, you can put whatever you like in the comments box. After you have done this if you log out and back in again you should magically have the TimeVault notifier app sitting in your systray. Right click on it and go to preferences to configure TimeVault as you wish.


When you start the TimeVault Notifier for the first time the tray icon will be greyed out and if you hover over it it will say that it is unconfigured. Listed below are the steps needed to configure TimeVault:

There are three tabs: General, Include and Exclude.




When you have finished making the necessary changes press the save button and TimeVault should pop up a message saying

You have included new directories in the TimeVault. File signatures will now be computed.

Click ok in this box and TimeVault should be active and will start watching your files.

TimeVault Development

TimeVault/Restructure (you should check this page for development information)

Alpha versions are available at https://launchpad.net/timevault/+download . Once feature-adding is stopped, it will enter Beta stage after some respectable period of use by Alpha-testers.

Discuss icon and look-and-feel issues in TimeVault/Branding.

Post ideas and wishlist/feature-requests in TimeVault/Ideas.

Ports to Non-Ubuntu systems or a WM other than GNOME are discussed in TimeVault/Ports.

Change Log

Version 0.6.7

Version 0.6.8

Version 0.6.9

Version 0.6.10

Version 0.6.11

Version 0.6.12

Version 0.6.13

Version 0.6.14

Version 0.7.0

Version 0.7.4


Check TimeVault/FrequentlyAskedQuestions to see if your question has been answered.

If not, please add it to the list of questions. Another place to look is on the forum post for TimeVault or on Launchpad

Other snapshot solutions include:


Testing and Bug Triage

Logo Design



If you are interesting in helping out, please volunteer here under the appropriate category or create one that suites you.

Testing and Bug Triage






TimeVault (last edited 2011-08-28 18:08:15 by sanderd17)