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h2. How Does rsync Work?
h4. Computing Deltas with Check Sums
*Must Read All Data on Disk to Compute Deltas using Checksums*
The real challenge as any server administrator knows is that in a modern server CPU time is usually plentiful while disk I/O is very precious. rsync must read all of the data on disk or in the file set to compute the checksums. This means the rsync operation takes longer and longer the more data there is no matter how little data has actually changed. This is why your server I/O wait time shkyrockets along with waiting processes and load average when rsync runs on a large data set.
For more information see: [TP:Why Are Server Backups So Painful?]
h2. Linux Server Data Protection