|How To Backup Files Using Windows XP
and other online threats can wreak havock on a PC. Hard drives can crash. The last thing you would want is to lose the years and years worth of personal files, family photos, email, school papers, work related documents etc...Don't think that it can't happen to you. Take a proactive approach and backup your data before there is a problem!
Read more below to find out to backup your data using two methods:
1) Using the Backup Utility build into Windows XP
2) Using the Windows XP CD Writing Wizard.
The Windows Backup Utility (Ntbackup.exe) comes pre-installed with Windows XP Professional. If you are using Windows XP Home Edition follow these steps to install the backup utility.
To Install Windows Backup Utility
- Insert your Windows XP CD into the drive and, if necessary, double-click the CD icon in My Computer.
- On the Welcome to Microsoft Windows XP screen, click Perform Additional Tasks.
- Click Browse this CD.
- Using Windows Explorer, double-click the ValueAdd folder, then click Msft, and then Ntbackup.
- Double-click Ntbackup.msi to install the Backup utility.
Now you are ready to backup your data. By default the Backup utility uses a wizard that makes the process fairly simple.
Running The Backup Utility
Backing Up With The CD Writing Wizard
- Click Start >> All Programs >> Accessories >> System Tools, and then click Backup to start the wizard.
- Click Next to skip past the opening page.
- Choose Back up files and settings from the second page, and then click Next.
- Choose what files to back up.
- One option is to backup All information on this computer. Think twice before choosing this option. If you have a wealth of software installed, your backup could add up to many gigabytes of data. For most users, the My documents and settings option is a more realistic choice. This selection preserves your data files (including e-mail messages and address books) and the personal settings stored in the Windows Registry.
- If several people share the computer - select Everyone's documents and settings. This option backs up personal files and preferences for every user with an account on the computer.
- If you know that there are files stored outside your user's profile which you would like to back up, click Let me choose what to back up. This option takes you to the Items to Back Up page.
Select the My Documents check box to back up all the files in your personal profile, and then browse My Computer to select any other files you want to back up.
- Choose where to store your backup files.
- On the Backup Type, Destination, and Name page, Windows asks you to select a backup location.
By default, Backup wants to save everything to your floppy drive (most likely - drive A). Backing up to floppy disk isn't realistic these days. It could take dozens of floppy disk to create a back up. Instead, click Browse and navigate to one of the following locations:
- Your computer's hard disk (aka hard drive). The best
backup location is a separate partition from the one
you're backing up. If your hard disk is partitioned
into drive C and drive D and your data is on drive C,
you can safely back up to drive D.
- A Zip drive or other removable media. At 100-250MB per disk, this is an option if you don't have multiple gigs of data to back up. (The Windows Backup utility can't save files directly to a CD-RW drive.)
- A shared network drive.
- An external hard disk drive. USB and IEEE 1394 or FireWire drives are reasonably inexpensive. Consider purchasing a 80 GB or larger drive and use it as a backup device only.
- After you've chosen a backup location, enter a name for
the file, and click Next to display the wizard's
final page. Then click Finish to begin backing up.
- The backup status screen will display as the files are being backed up. This part of the process could take awhile, depending on how much data you are trying to back up.
- When the backup is complete, the Backup Utility will display a message. Click the Close button.
You must have a CD-RW drive (a CD "burner") and CD's to write to.
- Locate the folder on your computer that contains the files/data that you want to back up. For example, the "My Pictures" folder is located in "My Documents".
- A typical writable CD can hold 700 megabytes of data, so you
need to verify that the folder is not larger than that. To check
the folder’s size, right click on the folder and select Properties
- make sure it doesn't exceed 700 megabytes and click OK to
close the Properties window.
- Right click on the folder again and choose Send to, then choose CD-RW Drive. (If your burner can also burn DVDs, it may be listed as DVD-RW Drive.)
- A dialogue box will then appear telling you that it is copying files to the chosen location. When this is complete, you will see a pop-up balloon notification in the lower right-hand corner of your desktop (near the system clock) letting you know the files are waiting to be burned.
- Click on the balloon. A new window will open showing your folder waiting to be written to a CD. Click on the option to Write these files to CD in the menu pane on the left.
- The CD Writing Wizard will appear. You can type a name for your CD in the supplied field, then click Next. (You will be prompted to insert a blank CD, if you have not already done so.)
- The CD Writing Wizard will then begin to copy the files to a CD. A progress screen will display with an estimate of the amount of time it will take to complete the backup process. When the CD Writing Wizard notifies you that your CD is complete, click Finish.
That's it your done! Keep your backups in a safe place and clearly label them by date. Don't forget to back up your data often. Disasters can happen and often there will not be any warning signs.