Missing programs - NOT in Windows.old folder
Before installing Windows 7 on my (hitherto Vista) VAIO I effected a full backup on an external hard drive.
I then installed Windows 7 and noticed all my program files were missing. When I went into the Windows.old folder I was able to see a good deal of them, seemingly most of those that I had installed myself, such as iTunes, 7Zip, etc.
The programs that were already installed on the VAIO when I bought it from the VAIO store, however, were absent. For example the whole Sony Recovery tool program, Adode Photoshop and others.
When I connected the hard drive to the laptop I was able to see the backup I had done just before W7 installation but when I tried to expand the folder down (hoping to see 'Program Files') I only saw a series of strange looking (albeit large) files that didn't mean very much. Presumably this is the way in which my backup was encrypted or stored, but is there a way in which I can access the individual programs from the hard drive so that I can put them back on my laptop?
I was able to find all my music, videos and documents in the Windows.old folder, and have restored them, but the missing programs worry me. Also the amount of free space on the laptop is identical now to when I still had Vista on there, making me think that perhaps the 'missing' programs haven't been deleted at all but may just be hiding somewhere in the 'Windows.old' folder. But I could well be wrong about that.
Apologies if I have been unclear; I am not the world's greatest computer-user so I may have explained myself poorly. Would appreciate any help or suggestions, though. Cheers.