Timeshift v17.10

Timeshift v17.10 is now available. https://github.com/teejee2008/timeshift/releases

What’s New

Main Window

Home Directories Excluded by Default

Previous versions of Timeshift would backup and restore hidden files and directories in user’s home. These directories sometimes contain large amounts of data (such as in ~/.steam) and waste space on the snapshot device.

Starting with this release, the entire contents of home directories will be excluded by default. Any data to be included from home directories must be explicitly selected from the Settings window.

A new tab named Users was added to Settings window. It displays the list of users on the system and provides an option to Include hidden items or Include everything from the home directory. Both options are unchecked by default for all users.

Users tab

Selecting an option on this tab adds/removes filters on the Filters tab. You can edit filters directly from the Filters tab if you need more control.

Filters tab

In BTRFS mode, the @home subvolume will be skipped by default during backup. If required, it should be included explicitly from Settings > Users.

Wayland Support

Timeshift can now be used in a Wayland session on Fedora and other distributions. A work-around was added to the timeshift-launcher script to enable the application to work.

Encrypted Home

Previous versions of Timeshift would copy the decrypted contents of home directory to the backup location. This was a security risk since it made the decrypted contents available outside the user’s home directory.

Starting with this release, only the encrypted files in /home/.ecryptfs/$USER will be saved to the backup location. This ensures that files remain encrypted and cannot be decrypted by anyone who has access to the snapshot data.

Since home directories are excluded by default, the encrypted files need to be included for each user (if desired) by selecting the Include everything option from Settings > Users.

Other Changes

  • [Added] Support for BTRFS systems with @ on BTRFS volume and /home mounted on non-BTRFS partition
  • [Added] Support for window progress in Cinnamon 3.6 using libxapp
  • [Added] Install a default configuration file in /etc/default/timeshift.json
  • [Fixed] Message dialog was unreadable when timeshift-gtk was started without admin access on a system with newer version of GTK+
  • [Fixed] Snapshots were saved to root device if the selected backup device was not available
  • [Fixed] App does not start under Wayland session on Fedora
  • [Fixed] Inverted mouse cursor was displayed for some cursor themes on KDE and GTK
  • [Fixed] Build error with valac-0.36
  • [Fixed] Build error with libvte-2.91 on Debian 9
  • [Fixed] Scheduled tasks will be added only after user clicks Next on Schedule page. Tasks will not be added if user quits the setup wizard without clicking Next on the Schedule page.
  • [Fixed] Use symbolic icons in toolbar for better contrast with light and dark GTK themes
  • [Removed] Removed the Exclude Apps page in restore wizard
  • [Removed] Unnecessary dependency on libxml2 and libsoup
  • [Updated] Improved installer; More robust and supports more systems
  • [Updated] Added new translations by Linux Mint translation teams


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17 thoughts on “Timeshift v17.10

  1. Tony, can you release an up-to-date RPM of TimeShift? I see you’re now up to v19, but the only CentOS7 rpm I see is v18-4 …. which is ~1.5 years old… ouch! [if you know of some other updated rpm for those of us who use RHEL distros, pointers would be appreciated!]


    1. I currently publish DEB packages for Ubuntu and Debian-based distributions. Since there are so many Linux distributions, it is up to the individual distro maintainers to package it for their distro. I’ll see if I can publish RPM packages for the next release.


  2. “the entire contents of home directories will be excluded by default” ?!???!?

    Isn’t the entire point of backup is to save user data that can’t be recovered from other sources? So what are you backing by default? System config? Fine. System files? That’s recoverable anyway. User files from /home? NO ??!?

    I must be missing something.


    1. Timeshift is a SYSTEM RESTORE utility meant for fixing system issues. It is NOT a backup tool for personal data. Is this really so hard to understand?

      There are many users using Timeshift for taking backups of their personal data. This is not what the tool is designed to do, but there’s nothing that I can do to stop people from using it this way.

      The trouble with including personal data is that new users will restore a snapshot to fix a system issue, and then discover that their personal data has disappeared from their home directory (replaced with old data from the snapshot). To avoid this the home directory data is excluded by default.


  3. “The trouble with including personal data is that new users will restore a snapshot to fix a system issue, and then discover that their personal data has disappeared from their home directory (replaced with old data from the snapshot).”

    Whats wrong with this if the snapshot was made the day or hours before?


    1. There’s nothing wrong if you are aware of what files will be replaced when you do the restore. In case of new users they are not aware that their personal files will be replaced. That is why personal files are not included by default.


      1. Rsync-based backups not very efficient compared to tools like Duplicity and Borg.

        With rsync, even if there is a small change in a file, an entire copy of the file will be stored in the snapshot.

        For users who have many GBs of files stored in their home directory, including that data in snapshots can cause the disk space to run out quickly.

        If you add your home data to snapshots, then make sure to exclude any large files that change constantly (like Virtualbox images, etc).


  4. Tony, I bought you a coffee, as Timeshift just saved my butt. I was able to restore my system to a usable state using timeshift. I might have also got you a donut, BUT…
    The Restore screen options are a little fuzzy. In my case, Debian crashed so badly that it simply hung at boot. I used the recommended route of using a debian live USB drive, installing Timeshift, and attempting restore. Timeshift seems to know the system was booted from USB as the main screen displays a message about USB mode, and “Restore Only”. The restore screen lists /, /boot, /home, and other locations. It is a bit confusing at this point. I sat and pondered the difference between ‘/’ and ‘/boot’. The screen proposes restoring / to the original partition (sda5), but for /boot, it proposes “Keep on Root Device”. It was a bit confusing, because at that time my root device was the USB live image. I think I wanted to actually restore /boot to the original sda5, and it wasn’t clear why /boot doesn’t get restored along with the rest of ‘/’.
    I don’t exactly recall all the iterations I went through before eventually restoring to a snapshot from several weeks ago that was additionally backed up to an external drive. I somehow lost the newer copies of the /timeshift directory.
    I think that a litlle better description of the restore from Live image would help a lot.
    Joe W


  5. Hi Tony very good work! I have a question: can I move the Timeshift folder in the new position? Both are ext4.
    Thank you
    Best regards


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