Integrating Decentralized Cloud Storage with Duplicati

September 9, 2020

In this blog post I will share an overview of how I built the native Tardigrade integration for Duplicati. This is also a good introduction on how to build a new back end for Duplicati—although I do not know why there should be the need for another back end next to Tardigrade. 😊

For those who do not know what Duplicati is: it is one of the biggest open-source and free back up utilities out there which has plenty of "back ends" to connect to, which will hold the archived data for you. Duplicati has its own logic for organizing files and metadata, but basically completely relies on files with a fixed size. This perfectly fits the Storj Labs Tardigrade cloud storage service, as it works best with (although is not limited to) big files that don't change often.

We have had Duplicati support for a long time through the tool's S3-gateway, which is still a valid way to go. But this involves installing and configuring the gateway locally which is not the best for the average "just want my backups done"-user. Therefore, we decided to go the native way and to create a Duplicati back end that "simply works" without installing anything else except Duplicati.

Getting cold feet and fearing of data-loss? Go and start your backup to Tardigrade via Duplicati here.\Getting hot on how all this works internally? Read on. 😊

Where to start

Duplicati itself is available on GitHub for anyone to clone, fork, extend and fix. So, in order to start developing for it, clone the actual Duplicati-repository locally. I am doing this on Windows, but Linux and Mac are supported, too. Just click the "Code" Button on the GitHub-Repo here and choose the option that fits your developer setup. Personally I'm working with GitHub Desktop, which I find very helpful with the daily git-tasks.

Next, open the Duplicati solution with Visual Studio. You will find plenty of projects included. First, try to build and run Duplicati to see if something is missing. Right-click the "Duplicati.GUI.TryIcon" project and set it as start project. Hit F5 and if everything is ok the tray icon should launch from where you can enter the frontend in your browser. Further info on setting up your Duplicati development can be found here.

Let's do this

If you want to create a new back end, you would have to create a new project within the solution and place it in the namespace (and path) such as "Duplicati.Library.Backend.XXX". This newly created project then has to be added as reference to "Duplicati.GUI.TrayIcon", "Duplicati.CommandLine", "Duplicati.CommandLine.BackendTester" and "Duplicati.Server". This assures your project can be used from all relevant parts of Duplicati.

Going forward, we'll focus on the Tardigrade-Backend which

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