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Back up windows with copy paste?


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#1 CHansohn

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 10:14 AM

A friend of mine asked me an interesting question I'm not sure how to respond. he asked if you have a windows installation on your computer and a portable windows XP could you use the portable windows to do a copy paste back up of the windows installation on the computer? He wants to have a simple way to back up his computer so when it crashes 2 days aren't flushed reinstalling crap.

I thought if you have the proper rights you would be able to since to the computer the OS is just data read so copy and paste for a back up should work right? as long as it is only used on the same physical computer. or am I missing something?

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#2 Casey_boy

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Posted 31 August 2010 - 01:47 PM

A friend of mine asked me an interesting question I'm not sure how to respond. he asked if you have a windows installation on your computer and a portable windows XP could you use the portable windows to do a copy paste back up of the windows installation on the computer? He wants to have a simple way to back up his computer so when it crashes 2 days aren't flushed reinstalling crap.

I thought if you have the proper rights you would be able to since to the computer the OS is just data read so copy and paste for a back up should work right? as long as it is only used on the same physical computer. or am I missing something?


I don't think that simple copy and paste will work with system files relating to the OS and I'm pretty sure that it will not work with most programmes, even if you're simply restoring the files on the same PC. It will work, however, with the user's data files.

Instead, a good way to back up your programmes with Windows 7 (which I'm guessing is the main computer's OS) is to use the System image backup utility.

Casey

Edited by Casey_boy, 31 August 2010 - 01:50 PM.

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#3 CHansohn

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 10:55 AM

to bad. it can never be that easy can it. oh well. thanks.

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#4 Platypus

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 07:12 PM

Seems to me that making a backup image using either Windows 7's own imaging facility or aftermarket imaging software would be just as easy if not easier than a copying and restoring process. It doesn't take long to restore an image to any of my systems if I need to.

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#5 CHansohn

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Posted 05 September 2010 - 12:27 PM

Sorry for the late reply. ok he said he is having windows 7 on the physical computer and windows XP on an external eSATA drive. can he use the windows XP built in backup system to backup and restore windows 7? or will that have the same problem as the copy paste idea?

CPU = Intel i7 950
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RAM = Corsair XMS3 DDR3 6X 2GB
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#6 thrillhouse

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Posted 05 September 2010 - 12:29 PM

It would be easier to clone the drive with Ghost or Acronis.

#7 CHansohn

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Posted 05 September 2010 - 02:55 PM

yea but don't those cost $$ and arn't they sector based? a file based system would be nicer so as not to take up excise space.

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#8 Platypus

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Posted 05 September 2010 - 06:23 PM

Full commercial versions cost, but there are also viable free alternatives. Two major ones are Seagate DiskWizard for a system with a Seagate or Maxtor drive installed and Acronis TrueImage WD Edition for a system with WD drive(s):

http://www.seagate.com/www/en-us/support/d...oads/discwizard

http://support.wdc.com/product/downloaddet...amp;wdc_lang=en

These are feature limited versions of Acronis TrueImage provided free by the hard drive manufacturers for management of their hard drives. Each requires a drive of the appropriate brand to be in the computer, then it will work in conjunction with other drives. That's what I use for my system backups.

Imaging utilities are sector based, as some of the data required for system installation backups is not in files. However they offer very effective compression to minimize space requirement, and overall, low-level drive access is faster than file level I/O copying large numbers of individual files.

For drive access completely independent of brand, there are several effective third-party free imaging utilities available, such as Clonezilla, EaseUs and DriveImageXML.

You can't always depend on the backup system of an earlier Operating System being able to deal correctly with a later OS. I'm not sure if XP's backup is able to even distinguish a second OS and back it up independently.

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