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Windows 7: new os


23 Mar 2012   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit.
 
 
new os

I am going to install a new os onto my computer ( Win 7 Home Premium - Win 7 Professional). My question is if there is a basic piece of software that will allow me to back up Everything (Including applications, files, game saves BUT NOT my current OS) on my computer onto a CD or external hard drive.
Thanks

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23 Mar 2012   #2

Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
 
 

What is your current OS?

Windows has this built-in. It's called Windows Easy Transfer and can be found under accessories/system tools. It will save all your user data (where most game saves are stored) along with program settings, like IE favorites etc. And it will also save your actual user account so that once transferred, you can still acess any files you may have created on secondary or external drives and maintain any user account access you might have on your network.

It will copy this data to an external drive or secondary drive and then after installing windows you then use easy transfer again to reload it.

This is probably only really necessary if you are doing a complete clean install though. In that case, besides using the easy transfer, I always install on a new HD separate from my old install (old disk removed from computer during install on new drive) so that if anything goes wrong I can just pop the old drive back in as if nothing happened.

In fact, if you do have multiple drives, disconnect ALL of them except the one drive you want to install windows on to prevent unexpected weirdness like you new windows root drive becoming "E" or boot files put on the wrong drive etc.
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23 Mar 2012   #3

Windows 7 Pro X64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by scottjm77 View Post
I am going to install a new os onto my computer ( Win 7 Home Premium - Win 7 Professional). My question is if there is a basic piece of software that will allow me to back up Everything (Including applications, files, game saves BUT NOT my current OS) on my computer onto a CD or external hard drive.
Thank
This reads like you hope to copy applications from your old installation to your new OS.

If the applications required installation, they aren't usually transferable. (There are Windows Regsitry entries, and there may be files in places other than the folder in which the application was installed.)

Windows Easy Transfer is suspposed to transfer files and settings (not applications), but it has never worked in a completely satisfactory fashion for me.

I suggest using an external HD with enough capacity to copy everything you need, and copying the data manually.
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23 Mar 2012   #4
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Programs, games etc. you have to reinstall. There is no way to transfer those. Your own files though you should copy to an ecternal drive as was suggested. I would not use CDs or DVDs - too messy. Rather use an external disk or large USB stick.

Make a simple copy/paste. Then you know what you have done. All those 'tools' (especially Easy Transfer) are unreliable and chances are you cannot retrieve your files in Windows 7.
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23 Mar 2012   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit.
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Programs, games etc. you have to reinstall. There is no way to transfer those. Your own files though you should copy to an ecternal drive as was suggested. I would not use CDs or DVDs - too messy. Rather use an external disk or large USB stick.

Make a simple copy/paste. Then you know what you have done. All those 'tools' (especially Easy Transfer) are unreliable and chances are you cannot retrieve your files in Windows 7.
Can you please tell me what things to copy/paste
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23 Mar 2012   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by scottjm77 View Post

Can you please tell me what things to copy/paste
Your personal data, such as:

Word documents, mp3s, videos, email, bookmarks, Excel documents, pictures, and anything else you value that is not part of Windows itself. YOUR own stuff.
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23 Mar 2012   #7
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Favorites you better store in bookmarks.
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23 Mar 2012   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit.
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Programs, games etc. you have to reinstall. There is no way to transfer those. Your own files though you should copy to an ecternal drive as was suggested. I would not use CDs or DVDs - too messy. Rather use an external disk or large USB stick.

Make a simple copy/paste. Then you know what you have done. All those 'tools' (especially Easy Transfer) are unreliable and chances are you cannot retrieve your files in Windows 7.
But see if I copied the PROGRAM FILES folder would that not work?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Mar 2012   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

No it wouldn't work.

Program files contains installed applications.

You have to reinstall programs.

But any uninstalled programs are just like data, you should copy them over if you want to reuse them.
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23 Mar 2012   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I suppose you would face real hard time of finding something do this kind of job or you will have to wait some developer to built a one because, while back I was using XP pro, I too had the same problem but finding a solution, no luck.

here is what I have to say, first of all better to wait for a guru cuz they may help you finding an alternative. I'm just posting my idea based on what I know.

there are basically two backing up methods we use, Backup - which gives you a exact copy of DATA thats in your partition or storage and other thing is imaging - which gives you a exact copy of the storage which you image. I think you obviously know that. so here's what I am pointing out, when we install some software or game or any other change to system, its not only affect on one place. as a ex: lets assume that you have installed photoshop in D:, but if you took a peek at system folders like AppData, Program Data...in system32 or WOW64, you will find so many tails of softs you have installed in different places. when you do a change in one place, in system it changes hell of a places that only the windows and programmers knows. I think now you have a idea how softwares affects on system files.

then, if you just make a backup of the drive, it will only make a copy of a existing data. ONLY DATA. those softwares dont backup system files I mentioned above and even some could make a copy of the registry, they dont backup those related files in various respective directories. then if you have just backup data and manage to get a copy of registry and miracally lets just assume you got each and every file copied. okay, then after you have installed windows again, how about those system32/WOW64 folders. even though you have copied them before, how you can think that system will treat each and every dll/inf/sys files same as before? you will just simply have junkyard system. that's why we use imaging for that purpose. because obviously the mangement over the softwares of system is essential to progarams to run. some may work, but lot may not. we use imaging beacause it makes an Image of every sector that contains bits.
So, my point is you should have made an image with the OS in order to proper working restoration.

and If someone going to make a soft like that, that should have good AI to track and trace each and every file of a respective program and the changes they have.

so why do you want something like you've mentioned. even though if you have imaged a 64 bit 7 ultimate, it would be like 7gb or little on that range. 32bit goes for like around 4gb. I think that's not very much large space for you to loose in favour of saving your time and sweat and headaches of re-installing windows and drivers. I suggest you to consider imaging. and wait for experts to give their guidance on finding such a app or if it don't exixst they will give some alternatives and advices.
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