Formatting an Iomega 250 Mb Zip Drive



Will XP recognise and format an Iomega Zip drive and allow copy/backup to it?
I am running SP2 and can no longer use the Iomega supplied One Step backup
s/w as Iomega no longer support this via Active Disc s/w. If not can anyone
recommend any other utilities or s/w that will allow me to use my Zip drive?
or can you suggest the best alternatives? Thanks for your assistance in

Bob Harris

XP has drivers so that ZIP drives are automatically detected. I added one
to my PC, rebooted, XP detected new hardware, and then the ZIP worked. It
shows in windows explorer as another hard drive. It also is available from
a DOS boot floppy, sinc ethe format for ZIP disks is usually FAT 32. XP
will format a ZIP from within windows explorer via right-click, format.

Do NOT install drivers from Iomega, such as you might have needed to do for
windows 98/ME. These will not work under XP, and might confuse things.

As for software to do backups, that depends on what you are trying to

If it is only personal files, then a windows explorer copy&paste will work
fine. This also works for *.EXE or *.MSI files that are downloaded and used
to install programs (e.g., winamp, winzip, quicktime, audacity, etc).

However, if you want to backup the operating system or installed programs,
you will need special backup software such as Norton GHOST or Acronis True
Image. (I prefer True Image). In theory you could use the Microsoft
program called NtBackup.exe, but in practice that is very limited,
especially if you want to fix XP, but you can not boot into XP.

However, given the size of XP and associated installed programs, a ZIP drive
is really too small and too slow to be practical for complete PC backup.
CDs are better, and DVDs beat CDs. But, the best solution for routine PC
backups is an external USB 2.0 drive.

That said, I also recommend occassional backups to optical media (CD or
DVD). Most backup prgrams have an option to create multiple-file sets with
a user-determined maximum size. For CD chose about 650 Meg. For DVD choose
no more than 4 Gig. (Even though the DVD can hold 4.7 Gig, the DVD file
system appears to be limited to 4 Gig for a single file. Besides a few more
bite-sized files are easier to manage.) In all cases write the image set to
disk first, then copy to optical media. Writing directly to optical media
is often prone to errors.

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