"Since this program is currently distributed as freeware, we don't offer technical support for it. Please refer to the program's help file and documentation.
"Images are stored in XML files, allowing you to process them with 3rd party tools.
Gee, It would be nice if they told us what those tools are !
"Never again be stuck with a useless backup!
It sure sounds like you are now stuck with a "useless backup" ! At least the backup files can be deleted.
There seems to be a "Catch-22" in using this free utility: to restore a system the OS must be up and running. However, if XP crashes and won't restart there is no direct means to run the restore operation.
They say that that it's possible to use Bart's PE Builder to create a bootable disc which contains the backup/restore utility, but they give absolutely no information about how to accomplish this.
Well, it's free, isn't it ? I suggest that you look into other utilities and be prepared to spend a little money for a more capable program. A proper backup utility will provide a self-contained solution, that is, will have a means to create a self-booting CD or DVD that will run without having to rely on XP or "third party tools". You will be able to run the restore program off of its disc and then feed it other discs that have the actual backup data on them. It should be able to completely recreate your hard drive and retore it to exactly the way it was when you made the backup. When you search for another backup program make sure all these features are clearly stated in its description.
I understand that Acronis True Image is popular, but I have no experience with it.