Backup for Windows XP


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Backup for Windows XP - do you know how to use the backup program built into Windows XP?

Would you like to know how a backup works and how it can save your data in case of a catastrophic failure?

The backup for Windows XP program is located in the System Tools section of Accessories, simply called Backup. If you do not see Backup in the System Tools, you can access the program by typing ntbackup.exe at the start/run command line. This will start with a splash screen select Advanced Mode and the program will start as you see it below.

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You will need a place to store your data. I suggest an external device, if you don't have a large amount of data a pen/flash drive will do, but if you have say a gig or more then the pen/flash drive will only hold one or two backup sessions, you may want a larger device.

Having a current copy of your important documents, music, and videos is important because of viruses and people that think it is funny to destroy your data.

If you live in an are where natural events are sometimes catastrophic a backup of your important documents may save you untold hours of work recreating them, not to mention the money it will save.

Backup for Windows XP instructions

Upon opening the backup program,  you will be greeted by the Backup page, you can use the wizard on the first backup. The following procedure will walk you through a successful backup. You can use your local hard drive the first time through, then when you have an external device copy the backup over and use that for your scheduled backups.
Backup Wizard Advanced Mode



Once you click on the Backup button you will be given an Explorer view of your computer, check the boxes of the directories you want to backup, if you want to drill deeper into the directory to select individual files then click on the plus buttons until you reach the desired level. put a check mark in each box you want to back up. Next you have to name the file of the backup and the location of the backup, I suggest you create a folder just for your backups on an external device.
Wizard  Directory listing



Once you have your selections, click on the 'Start Backup', the process will ask you for a backup description and if you want to append (add to) an existing backup or replace a back up. If you use a different name each time this will be irrelevant. 
Backup Job Information



Next click the 'Advanced' button, here you will select options for 'Verify data after backup' (recommended!),  'Disable volume shadow copy' (recommended), and 'Backup Type'. If you are going to setup a scheduled back up then you would select daily, if you just want to backup items that have changed select 'Incremental' - Note: you have to use append when you use 'Incremental or Differential' backup types. If this is a one time backup leave the selection at 'Normal'.
Wizard  Advanced Backup Options



If you want to start your scheduled process for XP now select the 'Schedule' button the process will ask you if you want to save the backup selections at this time, select 'Yes'

Wizard warning


Name your backup, select the folder where the backup profile will be saved, you can leave the folder  as default.
Wizard save backup profile


Your next steps are to setup the schedule for your backups, I suggest you set your schedule for the end of the work day, that way your back up will be complete for the day it is run. Name your backup, if you run different types of backups use creative names, daily for everyday backups (Incremental), month end if you run a complete backup at the end of the month, year end if you run a complete backup at the end of the year.
Wizard name that backup!


Once you have the date set, set the time or you will get this error:
Wizard  set the time to start your back up...


Next step is setting the actual schedule, if this is a one time backup leave at once, if you want it to run on a daily, weekly, other schedule select the appropriate type. Set your start time also, you should do your backup when your computer is not being utilized and you have open files, if a file is open the process will skip that file. This means that if you start the backup and you have selected the location where your email is located and it is open then it will not backup your email files.
Wizard schedule type


Click ok, the process will run at the scheduled time.
Wizard  Ready to run


This is a sample of the backup for Windows XP process in progress.
Wizard the process running...

Almost done...
Wizard second picture of the process running.

Check this page Backup for Windows XP for the different devices and types of backup you can do.

Are you a laptop owner? Here is a web site with good information about hard drive back up....

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