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Backing up windows image/data

Discussion in 'Windows & Other Software' started by turtle3, 17 Feb 2006.

  1. turtle3

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 16 Jul 2005

    Posts: 1,143

    Location: snodland

    Hi all, I know this is going to seem like a simpleton question to you all but its something ive never had the need to do, so Ive never done it before. Over the last couple of weeks due to windows not booting and a system 32 error coming up I have needed to reinstall windows over 3 times, as you know it then takes a good hour or 2 on top just to reinstall all your drivers/software/settings etc. Just in case it happens again I would like to save an image of everything in windows as it is, eg working with all my drivers, software and game installs. Is there anyway of doing this in windows xp or do I need to buy 3rd party software to do this, I am currently using the norton antivirus 06 trial and there is a backup image option in the menu but is greyed out, I will be buying antivirus 06 later so will this then allow me to make a backup or do i need something like norton ghost?? Also if I manage to make a backup, would I be able to use/install everything by booting from disk if windows wont boot up or will i still have to install windows then use my image to get back all my settings/drivers etc? :confused:

    thanks all
  2. nade

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 6 Dec 2003

    Posts: 2,290

    If you use Ghost, you can image an entire partition, multiple partitions or a whole drive. If this is what you are after you'd be better off copying the resulting ghost image onto some kind of removeable media (ext hdd or dvd or something).

    Then if something happens you boot up the PC from the ghost cd, follow the on screen prompts which will then allow you to restore from the ext hdd or dvd.

    Of course, you gotta pay for Ghost, but you can find it for around about 30 quid, which isn't bad i think.

    There is a free way to do a backup, use the Windows backup utility. But of course as far as i know if something major happens to windows, you'd have to re-install windows to the point that you could then restore from the backup.

    Hope that makes sense :)

    EDIT: Meant to say, when i do a clean install of windows, i get my drivers installed, my main applications installed and then ghost it to an ext hard drive. That way it's very quick to get it back up and running if needed.
  3. turtle3

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 16 Jul 2005

    Posts: 1,143

    Location: snodland

    thanks mate, ill check out the options you suggested :)
  4. thefranklin


    Joined: 5 Aug 2005

    Posts: 292

    Ok, so main applications can include games you don't feel like reinstalling. I would like to do this, get an external hdd, so about every 4-5 months I can get a fresh install of windows with all my apps/favorites. Then update windows, put on new stuff im using, and create a new backup image. Is this feasible? What about validating windows, will that needed to be done allt he time?

    I would also like to keep a clean install of windows for helping other people with problems, i guess the validating windows question should come here.

    and this could be done with a usb drive, right?