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Windows 7: Backup Question


16 Jul 2011   #1

Windows 7 32bit
 
 
Backup Question

Today was one of those days where I had a epic fail moment. Till today I was carefree about backups, system restore etc. But I've realized today that these things are important. I have a friend who is good with computers and suggested me a few things to take care from next time.

What happened today was, I had updated my Nvdia graphic driver card 2 days back. I don't know what caused the problem, but my system just wouldn't start up today. I just kept trying and it randomly started up. After it started up out of fear I updated my Intel drivers as well (from the intel site). During the process of updating the Intel Realtek HD Audio drivers, something got messed up. I didn't have a restore point set up, I didn't have any registry back up. Nothing helped me fix it, I called a technician to help me, I first thought it was a HDD/RAM problem but the tech said it wasn't.

He did a re-install of windows 7, after trying a lot to restore but every restore attempt just failed.

After this, I don't want to repeat the same mistakes second time. Not updating is not an option since that causes problems too, but sometimes updating can cause errors (less, but it can like how it cause me troubles).

My friend suggested me to do Registry backups before going in for any updates (Registry - Backup and Restore) and system restore point creations (System Restore Point - Create). My tech suggested me to create system image backups.

I've decided the following:
Create a system restore point every night,
Create a system registry backup every time before updating drivers.
Create a system image backup once in two months.

For the sake of it, I'm also getting a new internal HDD, and a new ram (already have 2x2 DDR3, getting one 4 gb DDR3). So any Hardware fault should also be fixed.

My friend said sometimes system restore points can fail, is that true?

What are your suggestions for a good backup, so that I don't get a situation like this again.

Regards.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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16 Jul 2011   #2
TCG

 
 

I've been extremely happy with the built in backup solution in Windows 7. It allows for full disk images as well as profile folders that you can directly access the data to without having to mess with the image. It updates in incremental mode so once your initial backup is done, future backups tend to go much more quickly. I do my incremental backups nightly actually, it takes almost no time at all and I too have lost data and am now overcautious.

System restore points are great and can really save you some headache. I'd highly agree with your plan of nightly restore points scheduled so you don't forget.

Creating a direct registry backup isn't really necessary in my opinion as system restore will provide this functionality for you already and will allow for an entire hive to be replaced.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2011   #3

Windows 7 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TCG View Post
I've been extremely happy with the built in backup solution in Windows 7. It allows for full disk images as well as profile folders that you can directly access the data to without having to mess with the image. It updates in incremental mode so once your initial backup is done, future backups tend to go much more quickly. I do my incremental backups nightly actually, it takes almost no time at all and I too have lost data and am now overcautious.

System restore points are great and can really save you some headache. I'd highly agree with your plan of nightly restore points scheduled so you don't forget.

Creating a direct registry backup isn't really necessary in my opinion as system restore will provide this functionality for you already and will allow for an entire hive to be replaced.
So the full disk image, I can do it everynight and store it on a external hdd? It changes only whats changed after the last backup was done if i'm right?

Can you guide me on how to schedule the restore points so that it automatically does it? Or is doing it manually the best? And as you say, if the nightly restore points are great then I'll stick with it

So I can use system restore, and forget about direct registry backup? If that's the case it will save me a lot of headache.

Thanks for the speedy reply! You may very well know my concerns after the events that took place today.

Regards.

Edit: understood what incremental mode is and edited my post accordingly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


16 Jul 2011   #4
TCG

 
 

Once a week on your scheduled Windows backup is surely fine. Definitely keep that backup on a secondary or external drive in case your issue is a hard drive failure.

To check your system restore settings go to Start > right click on Computer > Properties > On the left hand side click on "System Protection". This will pop up the system restore tab and will list your hard drives.
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Here is where you can turn it on/off for individual drives, set storage size, etc. You can also create a manual restore point from this tab if desired. I believe by default the system restore is set to run once a day provided it has been turned on. You can check in the Task Scheduler in the control panel to verify. It will be listed under Library > Microsoft > Windows > SystemRestore


My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2011   #5

Windows 7 32bit
 
 

Thanks a lot for the replies it's helped me out! I'll be creating a restore point every night and taking weekly backups.

Regards.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2011   #6
TCG

 
 

You're welcome.

Sometimes we must learn the hard way unfortunately. I was one of those people as well at one point. Remember, backing up is always cheaper than the alternatives if you have data loss.

~ tcg
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2011   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CapnLuffy View Post
Today was one of those days where I had a epic fail moment. Till today I was carefree about backups, system restore etc. But I've realized today that these things are important. I have a friend who is good with computers and suggested me a few things to take care from next time.

What happened today was, I had updated my Nvdia graphic driver card 2 days back. I don't know what caused the problem, but my system just wouldn't start up today. I just kept trying and it randomly started up. After it started up out of fear I updated my Intel drivers as well (from the intel site). During the process of updating the Intel Realtek HD Audio drivers, something got messed up. I didn't have a restore point set up, I didn't have any registry back up. Nothing helped me fix it, I called a technician to help me, I first thought it was a HDD/RAM problem but the tech said it wasn't.

He did a re-install of windows 7, after trying a lot to restore but every restore attempt just failed.

After this, I don't want to repeat the same mistakes second time. Not updating is not an option since that causes problems too, but sometimes updating can cause errors (less, but it can like how it cause me troubles).

My friend suggested me to do Registry backups before going in for any updates (Registry - Backup and Restore) and system restore point creations (System Restore Point - Create). My tech suggested me to create system image backups.

I've decided the following:
Create a system restore point every night,
Create a system registry backup every time before updating drivers.
Create a system image backup once in two months.

For the sake of it, I'm also getting a new internal HDD, and a new ram (already have 2x2 DDR3, getting one 4 gb DDR3). So any Hardware fault should also be fixed.

My friend said sometimes system restore points can fail, is that true?

What are your suggestions for a good backup, so that I don't get a situation like this again.

Regards.

(A).What you should/must do if you have not done so :

1. Create a set of Factory Default disc. This will help you return to Factory settings if all hell breaks loose. ( I have Acer which have a feature called Acer eRecovery Management which in turns will offer an option to create Factory Default discs. I needed 4 discs. )

2. Create a System Repair disc. This option is available at .......
Start > Control Panel > Backup and Restore > left column, Create a System Repair Disc.

*** with the above in your disposal, you won't need a technician for the problem you had.

(B). What I would suggest to do, and that is what I am doing on my computer :

1. Set up a shedule files backup ( once a month ) to an external hard drive.
It is pointless to backup your files into an internal partition drive.
What good would that do if your computer crashed and you had to re-install ? You lost all your files. Always use external hard drive for files backup. This can also be done via .....
Start > Control Panel > Backup and Restore.

2. Do your System Image backup once a week. Again, backup should be into external hard drive.

(C). My personal opinion only :

It is redundant to the point of excessive in creating a system restore point EVERY day. Remember, the system will create automatic restore points itself.
All you need to do is create a restore point ....
1. BEFORE you install a new program or uninstall a program.
2. Before you make changes in settings.
3. Before and or after you install Windows Updates.
4. Once a while, make a restore point when things are running smoothly.

That's my 2 cents.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2011   #8

Windows 7 32bit
 
 

There's another question I'd like to ask. On Monday/Tuesday I'm getting my 1tb HDD, currently I have two HDD's (150+300), I just made a fresh Install of windows today. When I get my new HDD, is there a way I can backup everything currently on my two HDD's and shift it to the new HDD? My tech say's he'll to it but he says he'll do a fresh windows install, I don't get the point. If we can just backup and move everything there, or is that impossible?

Edit: Nvm about the question. I'm just going to take all the files on the other drive into my external drive and place them once my new hdd is set up. I'll also do a fresh install of windows I don't mind it now since most of my softwares are already uninstalled!

Thanks for all the help, sevenforums
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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