Backup and Restore Validation
FTimes can help you to validate that your backup media and procedures
are functioning properly. To do this, take a snapshot of the
directories and files you intend to backup. Then, include the
snapshot in your backup. When you want to test the integrity of
your backup media, simply restore to a temporary location, run
FTimes, and compare the hashes of the two snapshots. To streamline
this comparison further, you could set FieldMask to NONE+MD5. This
way, you only have to deal with names and hashes.
In the case where you need to verify the integrity of the backed
up snapshot, simply record it's original output hash (i.e. OutFileHash)
in a log book or on the label affixed to the backup media. Then,
prior to comparing the two snapshots, recalculate the hash of the
restored snapshot. If it matches your saved hash, the snapshot's
integrity is intact.
Software Installation and Removal
So, you want to download a cool new application and install it on
your system, but you have concerns about what that self-extracting
zip file might do. Well, if you're determined to proceed, baseline
your system with FTimes immediately before and after the installation.
Then, you will be able to determine what files were changed, added,
and/or deleted in the process.