Back-up, Information and help required

  golfpro 07:27 03 May 2004

My Compaq Presario is now three years old, but I have never backed up the system in all this time.
I run M/S XP home edition and would like to make a back-up disc today when I am not in the house (as I believe this takes quite some time to run), is there anything important that I should know or do before I insert the disc and press the relevant button.

  Dowman 07:43 03 May 2004

Backing up a complete hard disk is not possible unless you have the right tools.

I use Symantec's Ghost software which takes a complete image of the entire contents, OS, applications etc. and it takes only about an hour or so to complete, depending on your HD size and contents.

In order for this to work, the image must be created on a separate HD, ie external USB drive, such as Archos or Iomega products.

There are other products out there like Drive Image, but I,ve never use them.

  Diodorus Siculus 07:43 03 May 2004

Depends on the sort of backup routine you are following.

click here for a comprehensive guide.

If just using with XP backup, then it should be ok with no special requirements - are you backing up to CD? If so, test it when done to ensure data integrity.

  golfpro 08:05 03 May 2004

Diodorus Siculus.
I'm not too keen on poetry, especially IT kind, was the link wrong??
Yes I was planning to do the XP back-up as in system tools, if this doesn't do a full system back-up what does it do, and is it worth doing???

  Diodorus Siculus 08:34 03 May 2004

click here

Apologies for that; I mistyped the URL.

Here is a taster:


This is the Holy Grail of Backups: A method that ensures you’ll never lose an important file; never have to rebuild your system and reinstall all your software from scratch; never have to re-type or recreate old data; never have that awful “Oh, no!” moment when you realize you need a file you deleted several weeks--- or even years--- ago.

Good backups do all that. They let you restore either a single file, or all files--- including system files--- back to a known-good state.

Some people think, “Well, I don’t have anything really valuable on my system.” But in my experience, just about everyone has *something* on their PC that they’d hate to lose. In some cases, it’s obvious--- business, tax, banking and other financial and legal records may have high value for three to seven years, or longer in some cases. But even PCs used informally or for recreation may contain important or valuable emails, family-heirloom digital photos or videos, creative works, and the like.

Your PC setup itself also has intrinsic value: As a LangaList subscriber, you probably invest a nontrivial amount of time getting your system “just right,” and just the way you want it. If you make the right kind of complete system backup when your PC is in perfect shape, or nearly so, then you can always return your system to that perfect state whenever you need to in the future. You’ll never, ever have to face a total reinstallation of Windows again. Should your system become unstable or corrupted, you can get it back to perfection in a matter of just minutes. (More info: see click here and click here )

Having a full backup also means that should something very, very bad happen to your PC--- hard drive failure, lightning strike, motherboard failure, outright theft of the system--- whatever--- you’ll be able to get back up and running in a fraction of the time it might otherwise take. You can even use backups to assist in moving files to a new PC, when you get one, letting you get the new box set up and in use in a flash.

We’ve been covering a *lot* of info about backups in recent issues of the newsletter, and those prior discussions constitute essential background for understanding the context of what follows in this article. Please take a moment to refresh your memory:

Backups, Part One
click here

Backups, Part Two
click here

What About Backup To/From Tape?
click here

Tape Vs CDs
click here

What About "Go Back" and "Restore" Tools?
click here

Mobile Rack Storage
click here

Reader Backup Response
click here

Much More Backup Info:
click here

New Recommendations For Backup Tools


  rawprawn 08:38 03 May 2004

I use Acronis True Image 7, it backs up the whole hard disc,to a partition it creates, so that if you have a catastrophe you can hit F11 at boot and it will replace any or all of your HD Image, or you can select a single file to replace if you have just made an error. I think it is relly good. click here

  Stuartli 08:54 03 May 2004

XP has its own Backup facility, including a wizard, but it is not installed by default in Home, only XP Pro.

If you want to install it you do so from your XP Home CD. Open the CD-ROM (you might want to right click it from My Computer and then select Browse) and look for \valueadd\msft\ntbackup

The file to be installed is NTBACKUP.MSI which you double click on to begin installation.

  golfpro 08:56 03 May 2004

Thanks everyone, I think I've got the picture, the only thing that worries me about backing up to your hard disc, if the worst comes to the worst and your complete hard drive goes south, then no matter what is on there you will lose it, correct! or am I wrong. I think I will just backup my important info and trust to luck, besides the pennies are a bit tight at the moment.

  Stuartli 10:29 03 May 2004

Not if you backup to CD-Rs (I do mine in multisession form) using Windows Backup.

It will save System State, create an ASR floppy and all your documents as required.

Eases the pain...:-)

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