Backup/Restore Windows Without Using Windows!


H

Howard Schwartz

It also seemed strange to me that virtually all of the backup/restore
programs I've heard of for windows, are windows programs themselves.
Therefore, they require that windows be working to restore some or all
files from windows! But a major reason for having backups is to restore a
windows system, that will not boot or will not run in some way.
Why? So one does not need to go through the time and trouble of
reinstalling a basic system, and then installing applications, data files,
and settings. Also, some windows files can not be updated or overwritten
while windows is running, cause it is using those files.

How to do this? The obvious way is to restore files, using an OS and/or a
restore program that is capable of writing to the windows file system,
e.g., FAT32, in particular - writing long filenames.

You would think that dos was the natural OS for this, but there are
only a few ways I know to do this: There are the lfndos utilities such as
lcopy that can run in plain dos and copy long filenames. There are some
mirky extensions of dos like cwsdpmi.exe, and lfndos, open dos - along with
programs like the unix cp.exe for dos that can copy files with long
filenames to FAT32, etc.

I know of know program that will uncompress archived files, and write
long filenames to FAT32, while running in real mode, or plain old dos.

Various programs that announc long filename support or command line
versions really mean they will run, only in the dos box created when
all the system windows files are in memory, up and running ! In other
words, windows must be running for them to work.

Anyone know of genuine windows backup/restore applications that can
restore windows files when running from an OS other than windows?
 
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A

Art

It also seemed strange to me that virtually all of the backup/restore
programs I've heard of for windows, are windows programs themselves.
Therefore, they require that windows be working to restore some or all
files from windows! But a major reason for having backups is to restore a
windows system, that will not boot or will not run in some way.
Why? So one does not need to go through the time and trouble of
reinstalling a basic system, and then installing applications, data files,
and settings. Also, some windows files can not be updated or overwritten
while windows is running, cause it is using those files.

How to do this? The obvious way is to restore files, using an OS and/or a
restore program that is capable of writing to the windows file system,
e.g., FAT32, in particular - writing long filenames.

You would think that dos was the natural OS for this, but there are
only a few ways I know to do this: There are the lfndos utilities such as
lcopy that can run in plain dos and copy long filenames. There are some
mirky extensions of dos like cwsdpmi.exe, and lfndos, open dos - along with
programs like the unix cp.exe for dos that can copy files with long
filenames to FAT32, etc.

I know of know program that will uncompress archived files, and write
long filenames to FAT32, while running in real mode, or plain old dos.

Various programs that announc long filename support or command line
versions really mean they will run, only in the dos box created when
all the system windows files are in memory, up and running ! In other
words, windows must be running for them to work.

Anyone know of genuine windows backup/restore applications that can
restore windows files when running from an OS other than windows?

Odi's LFN Tools works fine for me for FAT 32 in conjuction Win 9X/ME.

http://lfntools.sourceforge.net/

You use its LCOPY with appropriate command line switches. I use it
after booting into DOS with a Win 98 or ME boot disk.

For other file management work in plain DOS you might be interested
in my D-Browse program (see my web site). It uses a different approach
to providing LFNs. Odi's Tools use low level (BIOS) interrupt services
"underneath" the file system whereas D-Browse uses a special TSR which
"unlocks" LFN interrupts and works within the file system. Having LFNs
available via the special boot disk I provide, there shouldn't be any
problem using DOS unzippers (dearchivers/decompressors) I don't think.

Art
http://home.epix.net/~artnpeg
 
F

Frank Bohan

Howard Schwartz said:
It also seemed strange to me that virtually all of the backup/restore
programs I've heard of for windows, are windows programs themselves.
Therefore, they require that windows be working to restore some or all
files from windows! But a major reason for having backups is to restore a
windows system, that will not boot or will not run in some way.
Why? So one does not need to go through the time and trouble of
reinstalling a basic system, and then installing applications, data files,
and settings. Also, some windows files can not be updated or overwritten
while windows is running, cause it is using those files.

How to do this? The obvious way is to restore files, using an OS and/or a
restore program that is capable of writing to the windows file system,
e.g., FAT32, in particular - writing long filenames.

You would think that dos was the natural OS for this, but there are
only a few ways I know to do this: There are the lfndos utilities such as
lcopy that can run in plain dos and copy long filenames. There are some
mirky extensions of dos like cwsdpmi.exe, and lfndos, open dos - along
with
programs like the unix cp.exe for dos that can copy files with long
filenames to FAT32, etc.

I know of know program that will uncompress archived files, and write
long filenames to FAT32, while running in real mode, or plain old dos.

Various programs that announc long filename support or command line
versions really mean they will run, only in the dos box created when
all the system windows files are in memory, up and running ! In other
words, windows must be running for them to work.

Anyone know of genuine windows backup/restore applications that can
restore windows files when running from an OS other than windows?

I came across Partition Logic recently (see separate thread). I haven't
tried it but it looks as
if it might be what you are looking for. If you try it please post a report.

<quote> Partition Logic is a free hard disk partitioning and data management
tool. It can create, delete, format, defragment, resize, and move partitions
and modify their attributes. It can copy entire hard disks from one to
another. Partition Logic is free software, based on the Visopsys operating
system. It boots from a CD or floppy disk and runs as a standalone system,
independent of your regular operating system. It is intended to become a
free alternative to such commercial programs as Partition Magic, Drive
Image, and Norton Ghost... </quote>

http://partitionlogic.org.uk/index.html

===

Frank Bohan
¶ White dwarf seeks red giant for binary relationship.
 
M

mike555

=== I have XP (ntfs) and used the free partitioner " QT Parted " in
SystemRescueCD from ....... www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page , to make
an other partition , then used " XXclone (the free one) ...
www.xxclone.com ..... to clone my whole system onto that extra
partition , then set my boot.ini file to read .......

[Boot Loader]
timeout=5
Default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[Operating Systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home
Edition" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="XXCLONE: Windows (Cloned
Volume) [d:0,p:2] \WINDOWS" /fastdetect

... now I can boot into C or my cloned copy at startup ....... and
restore as necessary --- your letters may be different-be carefull--
 
M

mike

I came across Partition Logic recently (see separate thread). I
haven't tried it but it looks as
if it might be what you are looking for. If you try it please post a
report.
Since you ask.... :)

It won't boot either of my 98SE boxes, one goes endlessly round the POST
routine, the other stops at the "loading visopsys" screen

mike
 
B

Butch Lacadie

Frank said:
I came across Partition Logic recently (see separate thread). I haven't
tried it but it looks as
if it might be what you are looking for. If you try it please post a report.

<quote> Partition Logic is a free hard disk partitioning and data management
tool. It can create, delete, format, defragment, resize, and move partitions
and modify their attributes. It can copy entire hard disks from one to
another. Partition Logic is free software, based on the Visopsys operating
system. It boots from a CD or floppy disk and runs as a standalone system,
independent of your regular operating system. It is intended to become a
free alternative to such commercial programs as Partition Magic, Drive
Image, and Norton Ghost... </quote>

http://partitionlogic.org.uk/index.html

===

Frank Bohan
¶ White dwarf seeks red giant for binary relationship.
Wow,
This partition logic looks sweet!
Butch
 
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J

Juzme

Since you ask.... :)

It won't boot either of my 98SE boxes, one goes endlessly round the POST
routine, the other stops at the "loading visopsys" screen

mike

It freezes on all my systems, too, Mike. Juzme
 
H

Howard Schwartz

Odi's LFN Tools works fine for me for FAT 32 in conjuction Win 9X/ME.
You use its LCOPY with appropriate command line switches. I use it
after booting into DOS with a Win 98 or ME boot disk.

I am aware of these as the lfndos tools, the main one of which would be
lcopy. This only permits backup/restore by straight copying files. It does
not help with backup/restore programs. It also does not help uncompress and
restore files that have been compressed or archived.
Odi's Tools use low level (BIOS) interrupt services.

I realize these other versions of the copy command, use direct disk writes
which means your PC and disk must allow this. Otherwise, you need to write
files and filenames to disk, using the OS and or bios functions. Thus, I
believe, most tools (such as GNU;s cp.exe for dos) require,

an OS extension like Dos with the cwsdpmi.exe extender or
open dos, that can execute 32 bit applications and write
appropriately to a file system like FAT 32

AND

a 32-bit application like GNU's cp.exe for dos that is designed to
run under this OS, and is designed to take long filenames or directory
names as arguments. Various 16-bit copy commands, for example do not
work under 32-bit extended dos, just because this OS is capable of
handling long file names.
I tested cp.exe and it works.

Again, NO backup/restore program I know of, such as pkunzip or cobian
backup is designed to, and capable of, restoring files/directories with
long names when running under any version of dos.

pkunzip, for instance, claims to ``support'' long file names. But it only
does this when windows is running and in memory, and you use a dos box.
It will not deal with long filenames under any type of real or protected
mode dos I tried, even with long filename TSRs loaded like lfnddos. Windows
must be loaded, or no long filenames!

For other file management work in plain DOS you might be interested
in my D-Browse program (see my web site). It uses a different approach
to providing LFNs.

This sounds like a similar program, lfndos, which is a TSR that supplies
the long filename API to dos. I found such programs allow some endemic
internal dos programs like dir, to display long filenames. But these
programs do not permit applications not designed to take long filenames
as arguments, wor work with LFNs. For example, pkzip and unzip does not
work with long filenames, if lfndos is loaded, or your program either -
I suspect.

Exactly what other application does you program enable, to work with
long filenames?
"underneath" the file system whereas D-Browse uses a special TSR which
"unlocks" LFN interrupts and works within the file system. Having LFNs
available via the special boot disk I provide, there shouldn't be any
problem using DOS unzippers (dearchivers/decompressors) I don't think.

See above. When I tried there were problems -- the unzippers only unzipped
and wrote out short filenames.
 
H

Howard Schwartz

I came across Partition Logic recently (see separate thread). I
haven't tried it but it looks as
if it might be what you are looking for. If you try it please post a
report.

I loaded partition logic to a floppy and it would not boot. I got error
messages instead. I then read about its other limitations. I never fiddled
with it further. I do not believe it will provide anything more than the
ability to copy windows files with windows filenames. That is already
available with Odi's long filename utilities and an ordinary 16-bit dos
boot disk.

At minimum, I would like to compress and archive my backup files. I have
not found a compression program that will do this, unless windows is
running and loaded in memory - including pkzip and pkunzip, info zip's
zip and unzip. They both seem to support long filenames, only in a dos
box when windows is running.
 
H

Howard Schwartz

=== I have XP (ntfs) and used the free partitioner " QT Parted " in
SystemRescueCD from ....... www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page , to make
an other partition , then used " XXclone (the free one) ...
www.xxclone.com ..... to clone my whole system onto that extra
partition , then set my boot.ini file to read .......

Yes, one option is to create a bootable copy of windows onto another
partition, another disk, or a CD. Then if your main windows doesnt work,
you can boot to your backup version of windows, and restore files.

But remember my Subject: restore windows WITHOUT using windows!
You are not doing this. You are just running a second good copy
of windows. This is a practical solution, but I hate to keep an entire
spare bootable copy of windows XP around, just to be able to restore
perhaps a few files with long filenames!

Also, any restore applications like xxcopy, must understand or speak to
the quite picky NTFS file system. I think, in general, any restore tool
must be written to be aware of the data formats of the disk file system
being used.
 
H

Howard Schwartz

One solution is to create a spare, bootable copy of the windows OS.
Another, of course, is to backup using a disk or partition imaging
tool like partsaving. The big disadvantage to these, is you can not
update your backup, or restore -- just a few files. You can only
backup and restore entire partitions.
 
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A

Al Klein

But remember my Subject: restore windows WITHOUT using windows!

What do you have against running Windows to back up Windows, other
than, maybe, purity?
You are not doing this. You are just running a second good copy
of windows. This is a practical solution, but I hate to keep an entire
spare bootable copy of windows XP around, just to be able to restore
perhaps a few files with long filenames!

Whatever you keep around, it's probably going to be a bootable CD - so
what's the difference what OS it boots to?
Also, any restore applications like xxcopy, must understand or speak to
the quite picky NTFS file system. I think, in general, any restore tool
must be written to be aware of the data formats of the disk file system
being used.

Just boot a PE CD with all the backup programs you like.
 
P

Peter Seiler

Butch Lacadie - 12.04.2006 21:18 :
Wow,
This partition logic looks sweet!
Butch

but your unnecessary fullquoting looks NOT so sweet. Please learn to
quote and shorten the quoting as far as possible. Thanks.
 
A

Art

I am aware of these as the lfndos tools, the main one of which would be
lcopy. This only permits backup/restore by straight copying files. It does
not help with backup/restore programs.

LCOPY _is_ the backup/restore program. Use a Win ME boot disk with
deltree available. To backup C:\Windows to D:\Windows you first make
sure the destination is a empty folder, so:

1. deltree /y d:\windows
2. md d:\windows
3. lcopy c:\windows\* d:\windows /r /s /a

To restore, you do the reverse:

1. deltree /y c:\windows
2. md c:\windows
3. lcopy d:\windows\* c:\windows /r /s /a

Art
http://home.epix.net/~artnpeg
 
L

lonely_fairy_queen

Hi,

I'm using Drive Backup http://www.drive-backup.com/ What is nice, a
special bootable CD comes along with it. It's based on Linux, but you
needn't use any special commands, you can work with your keyboard and
mouse in Windows like interface. So, you boot your machine with this
CD, then run Drive Backup (resides on that CD), than point to your
archive and restore from it. Very nice and simple. I'm pretty happy
with it.

I do believe, that if it all goes about your data and system safety,
you really should spend some money for goot backup utility.

Cheers,
Queen.
 
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A

Art

=== I have XP (ntfs) and used the free partitioner " QT Parted " in
SystemRescueCD from ....... www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page , to make
an other partition , then used " XXclone (the free one) ...
www.xxclone.com ..... to clone my whole system onto that extra
partition , then set my boot.ini file to read .......

[Boot Loader]
timeout=5
Default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[Operating Systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home
Edition" /noexecute=optin /fastdetect
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="XXCLONE: Windows (Cloned
Volume) [d:0,p:2] \WINDOWS" /fastdetect

.. now I can boot into C or my cloned copy at startup ....... and
restore as necessary --- your letters may be different-be carefull--

My purposes in cloning a backup of the entire drive contents are:

1. Drive failure
2. Easy recovery from some difficult-to-remove malware.

Using a partition on the main drive doesn't satisfy either of my
requirements. Malware can spread to other partitions. So I've always
used a separate physical drive on a removeable tray. For Win 9X/ME,
XXCOPY /clone has long worked beatifully for me. For Win 2K I use
the free version of XXCLONE (as you do). It also hasn't missed a beat.

I use a so-called "hot swap" type of removeable tray. These come with
a locking key/switch on the front panel. The backup drive can just sit
there in place if desired. With the switch off, there's no power to
the backup drive, so it's not accessable. The backup drive is on a
secondary drive cable installed as Master. It then is HDD1 in the BIOS
where the main drive is HDD0. I set the BIOS boot sequence as:

First boot device = HDD1 (My backup drive)
Second boot deovice= Floppy (I use floppies a lot)
Third boot device =HDD0 (my main drive)

Then in normal operation with no power on HDD1 (and no floppy)
the PC boots off the main drive. All I have to do is reboot and turn
power on the backup drive via the keylock in order to boot up via
HDD1 and then do a restore using XXCLONE. Drive C: is HDD1 and some
other drive letter is HDD0 (drive letter depending on CD ROM drives
installed or whatever). In any event, XXCLONE assigns the appropriate
destination drive letter. After doing the restore, I simply turn power
off the backup drive and reboot.

If you're really paranoid, you can pull the backup drive out of the
tray and store it in a safer place (from fires). BTW, the use of hard
drive reliablity test utils from the drive vendors is highly
recommended. To save money, I use older used drives for backup
so I want to make sure they seem to have enough life left in them
to serve as a backup which is rarely used. The removeable trays
can be purchased here at local PC supply stores for $11 US, so
if you have a spare extra 80 pin drive cable handy for the secondary
drive cable required, you can do what I've suggested for just the
cost of the tray.

Art
http://home.epix.net/~artnpeg
 
H

Howard Schwartz

What do you have against running Windows to back up Windows, other
than, maybe, purity?

Convenience, mostly. I do not have an R-CD or a RW-CD cd -- honest.
So it is easier to boot linuz or dos from a floppy than boot a second
windows. I admit, it seems conceptually wierd to me for a recovery or
backup tool designed to help rejewvenate an ailing windows, requires
an original or copy of windows to be already working, to run the
application itself.

Call me crazy, but there are plenty of recovery tools that run fine under a
simple emergency OS like dos; why not make backup tools that do also?
Whatever you keep around, it's probably going to be a bootable CD - so
what's the difference what OS it boots to?

See above. I have an ordinary CD only that I can not write to, so for me
my emergency media are floppies, another hard disk, or another partition on
my primary disk.
 
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A

Al Klein

What about Ghost and Bart's PE?

Bart PE gives you a LiveCD version of XP. It's a lot of work to make
it the way you want it, but if your computer ever dies and you need
(not want, need) to get data from it and have no other way but booting
some CD, the PE CD will do the trick and give you a familiar
environment to work in. I make sure I always have a couple of working
ones.
 

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