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Old May 9, 2009, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by kav View Post
Does anyone have any comments on the windows backup utility?
The drive image (Complete PC Backup) feature for Vista Business / Ultimate I've found to be good, although you have to restore to a disk of identical or larger size (or else it will give you a hard time). I think the backups it makes are also readable by Microsoft Virtual PC, which is a bonus if you don't want to go through restoring the whole thing. My only complaint is that it doesn't compress the images, so get a BIG drive if you intend to use it. I use it for my laptop which does not use Ghost, and it's not bad.

As for the backup files and folders feature, I'd avoid it, because you don't have much control over what it backs up:
  1. It only allows you to select entire DRIVES (not individual folders) to back up.
  2. Windows gets to choose which file extensions get backed up.
Point #1 was an annoyance to me, because I saw it backing up music and textures of my installed games (e.g. all the music from my UT2004, GW.DAT from Guild Wars), which wasted TONS of space in the backup drive.
Point #2 was the killer that made me stop using it - I noticed that many files in my archive were not being backed up because they were on Microsoft's list of stuff that it thinks users don't back up. Included are "Program Files", which meant that none of the old games that I made as an amateur programmer got backed up. Thankfully I tested by doing a mock restore, rather than finding out later on that Windows decided to discard the old mini-games that I programmed myself.

If you want to use Vista Business / Ultimate's built-in backup program, ONLY use the Complete PC Backup component, so you don't play a dangerous guessing game with what is backed up. As for files and folders backups, I'm using the old command prompt and robocopy, so I too am looking for suggestions .

Hope this helps.
"The computer programmer says they should drive the car around the block and see if the tire fixes itself." [src]
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old May 10, 2009, 09:24 AM
kav kav is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
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Thank you! That helps a lot!!
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