How to Backup & Restore Linux System Settings With Timeshift?

Timeshift is a free and open-source system backup and restores tool for Linux. It allows users to create snapshots of your system at a specific time and restore the system to a previous snapshot if needed.

Today, this guide will create a backup of the Linux system and restore the system using the “timeshift” application. The content of this guide is as follows:

Let’s start with installing the timeshift application.

Prerequisite: Install Timeshift on Linux

To use Timeshift, you need to install it on your Linux system. On Linux-based systems, you can install Timeshift with the following command:

$ sudo apt install timeshift   #For Debian-Ubuntu Systems
$ yay -S timeshift             #For Arch Based
$ sudo dnf install timeshift   #For Fedora Based 

How to Create a Backup Using Timeshift?

Once the Timeshift is installed, you can follow the steps below to create a backup and restore it.

Step 1: Launch

When we launch the “Timeshift” application, a user’s password is required to make further use:

Step 2: Create a Snapshot for Backup

To create the backup of the Linux system, choose the “Create” button located at the left top window:

Select Snapshot Type

Additionally, users can select the snapshot type “RSYNC” and “BTRFS”. In our case, we choose the “RSYNC” option that incrementally creates a backup of the operating system:

Snapshot Location

To choose the location where you create the backup of the system. For instance, select the same hard drive, “sda3” for backup files:

Backup Schedule

Users can also create a backup schedule based on “Monthly”, “Weekly”, “Daily”, and “Hourly”. In our case, choose the “Weekly” plan to create the backup file of the system:

Backup Home Directory

By default, the home directory is excluded unless the user can enable it by selecting it:

Exclude Files And Directories From Backup

Before creating the backup, you can exclude or include the ordering pattern using the drag and drop option:

Display the Backup Files

Once the backup is created, users can display it through the “ls” command after accessing “timeshift” directory:

$ ls -l /timeshift

The output verifies the backup directories with date and time in the “timeshift” directory.

How to Restore Linux System Settings Using Timeshift?

To restore your system to a previous snapshot, open Time Shift and select the “Restore” option. Additionally, users can select the snapshot they want to restore from the list, then follow the prompts to restore their system to that snapshot.

Note: Timeshift only restores system settings and files included in the snapshot. Those changes will not be restored if you have added or modified any files or settings after the snapshot.

That it’s from the guide to the backup and restoring systems using timeshift.


To back up and restore the Linux system, select the “Create” and “Restore” button after launching the timeshift application. Additionally, you can manually set the backup time and exclude specific directories and files for backup. It is all about creating a backup and restoring the Linux system with the help of the timeshift application.