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Using Windows Backup

Windows Backup Limitations: Backup can be used to archive selected files and settings or entire drives, including the bootable system drive and create a recovery diskette that can be used with a "boxed" version of Windows in the Setup program. If Backup is used to archive an entire drive, it is not selective as to file types and the archive will include temporary, disk cache and other non-essential files. However, any of the resulting backup archives can be used to selectively restore files. Backup will only archive to removable media, hard drives, or network drives, and cannot back up to optical media directly.

System Preparation
Verify and correct any errors on the drive as these will cause most backup programs to abort before the backup data is fully collected. Cleaning up unnecessary temporary files will speed up the NTBackup process and reduce the size of the resulting archive. (Note: Defragmentation will have little or no effect on this process.)

=>Run Error Checking on the hard disk to check for errors. To correct errors on the startup drive/partition will require a system restart with CHKDSK running before Windows Starts. To do this:

Command Line Method Windows GUI Method

a) Click Start, Run

b) Enter "CMD" in the Open box (without the quotes) and click OK to open a Command Prompt window.

c) At the C: prompt, enter "CHKDSK" and press "Enter" to check for errors. To scan for and correct errors, enter "CHKDSK /F" and press "Enter".

d) Restart the computer to start the process ("Start", "Turn Off the Computer", "Restart").
Note: If you choose to run CHKDSK only to look for errors, but not correct them, you will need to repeat the process with the "/F" option only if errors are reported.

a) Open My Computer, right click on the local hard drive to test, select Properties.

b) Click the Tools tab, and then click the "Check Now" button in the Error Checking section.

c) Add a checkmark next to "Automatically fix file system errors" and next to "Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors" and click "Start"

d) Click "Yes" to the option to schedule the disk Check next time you start.

e) Restart the computer ("Start", "Turn Off the Computer", "Restart")

=> Run the Disk Cleanup Tool to delete unnecessary temp files. To do this:

a) Open "My Computer"

b) Right-click on the hard drive, select "Properties"

c) Click the "Disk Cleanup" button in the lower right of the "General" tab.

d) Add check marks next to:
- Downloaded Program Files
- Temporary Internet Files
- Recycle Bin
- WebClient/Publisher Temporary Files
- Catalog files for the Content Indexer

e) Click OK and then click "Yes" to start the clean-up process.

=> Manual deletion of common temporary directories and subdirectories.
The disk cleanup tool will not remove all temporary files from the drive if the applications that created them used Windows "legacy" directory locations or created subdirectories during installation. Note that some of these temporary directories may be flagged as hidden or system folders and you will need to adjust the Advanced Settings under Folder Options to view or access them. To do this:

Directories to check for temp files: Advanced Folder Option Settings

a) Click on "My Computer"

b) Click to open the Local Hard drive

c) Open the "Windows" directory, and then open the "Temp" directory. Delete any temp files found. d) Open Documents and Settings
For each user folder in Documents and Settings:
Open the User's Folder, "Local Settings" Folder, and then the "Temp" folder. In the Temp folder:
Select and delete any files and folders appearing in these directories (do not delete the temp folder itself.)

If you receive an (access denied) error and that a file cannot be removed; skip that file and continue to delete the rest. Since a group selection and delete operation will terminate on errors, try selecting smaller groups until you have just the 3-4 files left that are "locked" by the system.


a) From a Windows Explorer window, click on the "Tools" menu and select "Folder Options"

b) Click on the "View" tab and make the necessary changes:
• Display the contents of system folders
• Hidden files and folders
-> Do not show hidden files and folders
-> Select show hidden files and folders
• Hide extensions for known file types

c) Click the "Apply" button

d) Click the "Apply to All Folders" button

e) Click OK

How to back-up normal user data with Windows Backup
The backup drive can be any removable media, a folder on the drive, a second hard drive, a network drive, or an external USB or Network-Attached Storage (NAS) device as long as it has sufficient capacity to contain all of the data. If using removable media, multiple disks may be required. An estimate of the number of required disks should be displayed. Windows Backup does NOT support archiving directly to an optical disk drive. To make a backup to optical media, save the archive on a network or other secondary storage device and then use your regular software to burn the data folder and application to the recordable media.

=> Run Windows Backup on the source system. To do this:

a) Click Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, Backup

b) Close any running programs (especially email!) and click "Next"

c) Select "Back up files and settings" and click "Next"

d) Select what to Back Up and click "Next":

- My documents and settings. This only backs up the default user's Documents, Favorites, Desktop, and Cookies. It will not include additional files or folders. Files and Settings Wizard is a better choice unless the user needs to be able to selectively restore specific files..
- Everyone's documents and settings. This choice works well for a system with multiple users where there are no additional files or folders that need to be included. Depending on the type and amount of data in the different user folders, the backup archive may exceed standard optical disk capacities.
- All information on this computer. This creates a complete archive of the computer files, and can easily exceed the capacity of a standard DVD or other optical media. Since the archive file does not automatically split into several smaller files, you have no way to span multiple disks.
- Let me choose what to back up. This would be the best choice when there are multiple users of the system or there are additional files or folders that need to be archived. This solution is also best if large amounts of data need to be archived because they can be broken into multiple archives by running the backup for each user or group of files.

e) In the Items to Back Up list, select the files and folders to archive. To archive most of the normal files, favorites, and desktop, add a checkmark to the following:

 C:\Documents and Settings\All Users
 C:\Documents and Settings\<user name>
 C:\Windows\Profiles (contains legacy user profiles and Outlook Express data.)
 Select any other folders that contain files requested for backup

f) Click "Next"

g) Select the backup destination and name. The destination can be any removable media such as floppy disk or USB flash drive, a folder on the local drive, or a network drive that has sufficient capacity to hold the final archive. If using removable media, Windows Backup will prompt to insert new media as needed.

h) Click "Next"

i) Click "Finish" to start the archive process.

j) Click "Close" to exit the program.

Make a Windows Backup and Restore CD, DVD, or archive folder. To do this:

a) In My Computer, open the folder \Windows\System32. Locate the file "ntbackup.exe"

b) Copy the program file to the same location as selected when you ran the Wizard to archive the files.

c) To create a recordable CD using Windows built-in burning feature:

- Insert a blank CD-R disk in the optical drive
- Select the data folder created by the Backup program and any additional files you copied.
- Right-click, select Send To from the context menu, select the CD-ROM drive from the list.
- Click on the notification balloon "You have files waiting to be written to the CD" and follow the prompts to burn the files.

How to restore normal user data with Windows Backup
=> Run Windows Backup on the source system. To do this:

a) Double-click on the ntbackup.exe file on your archive media. Or, to run the backup from the Start menu: Click Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, Backup

b) Close any running programs (especially email!) and click "Next"

c) Select "Restore files and settings" and click "Next"

d) Click "Browse"

e) Enter the path and filename of the archive or click "Browse". Locate the archive file, select it and click "Open". Click "OK"

f) Expand the items to restore in the left window to view the drives, folder and files to restore. Add check marks next to the items to restore and click "Next"

g) Click the "Advanced" button to select restore options.

h) To restore files to their original locations, (select if necessary) and click "Next"

i) Select how to restore options and click "Next":

- Leave existing files (This option will never replace any file of the same name.)
- (check) Replace existing files if they are older... (Overwrites files from the archive with the same name, but only if the archive file has a more recent date and time stamp. In most cases this should be the preferred choice in how to restore files.)
- Replace existing files (Replace any file on the hard drive with the archive file version even if the archive is an older version. Generally, this would be bad if dealing personal data files, unless you specifically wanted to recover an older copy of the file.)

j) Choose to restore security and special files. The defaults are to (check all):

- Restore security settings
- Restore junction points, but not the folders and data they reference
- Preserve existing volume mount points

k) Click "Next"

l) Click "Finish" to start the restore process.

m) Click "Close" to exit the program.

n) Click "Yes" to restart the system.

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