cargo install httm


Interactive, file-level Time Machine-like tool for ZFS/btrfs

by 0.12.6 (see all)License:MPL-2.0
cargo install httm



The dream of a CLI Time Machine is still alive with httm.

httm prints the size, date and corresponding locations of available unique versions (deduplicated by modify time and size) of files residing on snapshots, but can also be used interactively to select and restore such files. httm might change the way you use snapshots (because ZFS/btrfs aren't designed for finding for unique file versions) or the Time Machine concept (because httm is very fast!).

httm boasts an array of seductive features, like:

  • Search for and recursively list all deleted files. Even browse files hidden behind deleted directories.
  • List file snapshots from all local pools (httm automatically detects local snapshots as well as locally replicated snapshots)!
  • List file snapshots from remote backup pools (you may designate replicated remote snapshot directories).
  • Supports ZFS and btrfs snapshots
  • For use with even rsync-ed non-ZFS/btrfs local datasets (like ext4, APFS, or NTFS), not just ZFS/btrfs.
  • Specify multiple files for lookup on different datasets
  • 3 native interactive modes: browse, select and restore
  • ANSI ls colors from your environment
  • Non-blocking recursive directory walking (available in all interactive modes)
  • Select from several formatting styles. Parseable ... or not ... oh my!

Use in combination with you favorite shell (hot keys!) for even more fun.

Inspired by the findoid script, fzf and many zsh key bindings.

Install via Native Packages

For Debian-based and Redhat-based Linux distributions (like, Ubuntu or Fedora, etc.), check the tagged releases for native packages for your distribution.

You may also create and install your own native package from the latest sources, like so:

curl --proto '=https' --tlsv1.2 -sSf | sh
cargo install cargo-deb 
git clone
cd ./httm/; cargo deb
# to install on a Debian/Ubuntu-based system
dpkg -i ./target/debian/httm_*.deb
# or convert to RPM 
alien -r ./target/debian/httm_*.deb
# and install on a Redhat-based system
rpm -i ./httm_*.rpm

For Arch-based Linux distributions, you can create and install your own native package from the latest sources, like so:

# you need to edit the PKGBUILD as needed to conform to the latest release
makepkg -si

Install via Source

The httm project contains only a few components:

  1. The httm executable. To build and install:

    curl --proto '=https' --tlsv1.2 -sSf | sh 
    cargo install httm
  2. The optional zsh hot-key bindings: Use ESC+s to select snapshots filenames to be dropped to your command line (for instance after the cat command), or use ESC+m to browse for all of a file's snapshots. After you install the httm binary, to copy the hot key script to your home directory, and source that script within your .zshrc:

    httm --install-zsh-hot-keys
  3. The optional man page: cargo has no native facilities for man page installation (though it may in the future!). You can use manpath to see the various directories your system uses and decide which directory works best for you. To install, just copy it to a directory in your man path, like so:

    cp ./httm/httm.1 /usr/local/share/man/man1/


Right now, you will need to use a Unix-ish-y Rust-supported platform to build and install (that is: Linux, Solaris/illumos, the BSDs, MacOS). Note, your platform does not need to support ZFS/btrfs to use httm. And there is no fundamental reason a non-interactive Windows version of httm could not be built, as it once did build, but Windows platform support is not a priority for me right now. Contributions from users are, of course, very welcome.

On FreeBSD, after a fresh minimal install, the interactive modes may not render properly, see the linked issue for the fix.

On some Linux distributions, which include old versions of libc, cargo may require building with musl instead, see the linked issue.

Example Usage

Note: You may need to use sudo (or equivalent) to view versions on btrfs datasets.

Print all unique versions of your history file:

httm ~/.histfile

Print all files on snapshots deleted from your home directory, recursive, newline delimited, piped to a deleted-files.txt file:

httm -d -n -R --no-live ~ > deleted-files.txt

Browse all files in your home directory, recursively, and view unique versions on local snapshots:

httm -i -R ~

Browse all files deleted from your home directory, recursively, and view unique versions on all local and alternative replicated dataset snapshots:

httm -d only -i -a -R ~

Browse all files in your home directory, recursively, and view unique versions on local snapshots, to select and ultimately restore to your working directory:

httm -r -R ~

Browse all files, recursively, in your MacOS home directory backed up via rsync to a ZFS/btrfs remote share, shared via smbd, and view unique versions on remote snapshots:

# mount the share
open smb://<your name>@<your remote share>.local/Home
# set the location of you snapshot share point and local relative directory
export HTTM_SNAP_POINT="/Volumes/Home"
export HTTM_LOCAL_DIR="/Users/<your name>"
# execute httm
httm -i -R ~

View the differences between each unique snapshot version of .zshrc and the live file:

for version in $(httm -n $filename); do
    # check whether files differ (e.g. snapshot version is identical to live file)
    if [[ ! -z "$( diff -q  "$version" "$filename" )" ]]; then
        # print that version and file that differ
        diff -q  "$version" "$filename"
        # print the difference between that version and file
        diff "$version" "$filename"

Create a simple tar archive of all unique versions of your /var/log/syslog:

httm -n /var/log/syslog | tar -zcvf all-versions-syslog.tar.gz -T -

Create a kinda fancy tar archive of all unique versions of your /var/log/syslog:

# a slightly fancier GNU tar folder structure
dir_name="${$(dirname $file)/\//}"
base_dir="$(basename $file)_all_versions"

httm -n "$file" | tar --transform="flags=r;s|$dir_name|$base_dir|" \
--transform="flags=r;s|.zfs/snapshot/||" --show-transformed-names \
-zcvf "all-versions-$(basename $file).tar.gz" -T  -

httm -n "$file" | tar --transform="flags=r;s|$dir_name|$base_dir|" \ --transform="flags=r;s|.zfs/snapshot/||" --show-transformed-names \ -zcvf "all-versions-$(basename $file).tar.gz" -T -

Create a super fancy git archive of all unique versions of /var/log/syslog:

# create variable for file name
# create git repo
mkdir ./archive-git; cd ./archive-git; git init
# copy each version to repo and commit after each copy
for version in $(httm -n $file); do
    cp "$version" ./
    git add "./$(basename $version)"
    git commit -m "httm commit from ZFS snapshot"
    # amend commit date to match snapshot modify time
    git commit --amend --no-edit --date "$(date -d "$(stat -c %y $version)")"
# create git tar.gz archive
tar -zcvf "../all-versions-$(basename $file).tar.gz" "./"
# and to view
git log --stat

I know what you're thinking, but slow your roll.

To be clear, httm is not...


httm is licensed under the MPL 2.0 License - see the LICENSE file for more details.

GitHub Stars



2mos ago








2d ago
2d ago
2d ago
2d ago
No alternatives found
No tutorials found
Add a tutorial