Extended attributes?

I'm looking for a way to 'mark' a file to be backed up. I've been experimenting with stuff like

setfattr -n user.backmeup ~/foo

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but the problem with that is if i use getfattr i can't use the exit code to determine whether that attribute was found, and therefore whether the file should be backed up. Any other ideas?
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CEHJAsked:
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woolmilkporcConnect With a Mentor Commented:
You could try this:

if [[ ! -z $(getfattr -n user.backmeup ~/foo 2>/dev/null) ]]; then
  echo Attribute is set, run backup
    # Your backup command(s) go here; "setfattr -x ..." (?) if successful
 else
   echo Attribute is not set, do nothing
    # Or run other maybe required commands  
fi
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CEHJAuthor Commented:
Thanks. The utility doesn't use its exit codes in the way i'd like, which could have made usage easier and more elegant but i did something pretty similar in the end.

Maybe i ought to use a different file system. fwiw i tried to use ext4's creation time in stat but am told that the kernel calls won't pass the creation time to external tools (!?)
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