Backup file size larger than source files



I am using the Windows XP Backup utility to back up my computer to a USB 1
Terabyte external drive.

The question is: why are the backup files so huge, much bigger than the
original file storage?

On my HP computer, my main drive is partitioned into a C: and D: drive. The
D: drive is small, just for the restore disk.

My C: drive has 85 Gig used, and my D: drive has 8 Gig used.

Using the Backup wizard, I selected to backup "Everything" as a "Normal"
(full) backup.

After running for 12 hours the backup appeared half done. I canceled it
because I needed to get back to work. The backup file made was about 193 Gig!

Other backups I have made of just My Documents were about 74 Gig, for example.

What is going on with the Backup utility? This seems less than practical.
Can any explain what Backup is doing and if there is a better way to use it?
(I plan to do incremental and/or differential backups once I get a complete
backup done.)


P.S. Is there a web forum for these kind of discussions that can be
accessed instead of a News Group?


12 hours??!!

firstly, I would ensure
that the computer is
truly dedicated to the

therefore, be sure to
disable all your startups
and unneeded services,
especially your anti virals.

secondly, be sure to do
a clean up of the disk.

no need to back up temps
and trash.

you could also do a defrag
beforehand, its not really
necessary but wouldn't
hurt as well.

lastly, backup will provide
stats/estimates of what
is going to be backup'd.

so pay attention to the
sizes and time to ensure
they are within reason.

if the stats for example
say your backup file will
be 2 terabytes and take
4 weeks to complete,

then you might not to

DatabaseBen, Retired Professional
- Systems Analyst
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"share the nirvana" - dbZen



That almost sounds like a cyclic copy problem, but I thought ntbackup
was protected from doing that.
Is there any chance the saved backup files are on the same drive you
are backing up? If so, you want to be sure you exclude the backup files
from backup! Otherwise it might keep on seeing the backup files as
changed and try to back it up again! And again. And ...

Just a shot in the dark,



Yes, you got it. I looked into a backup file on my external "J:" drive and
saw a reference to the J: drive itself. When I chose the "entire computer"
option for backup, I forgot the backup drive would be part of it.

Thanks all for the replies.

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