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A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / accepts command-line arguments ?



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 13th 18, 05:30 PM posted to microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
R.Wieser
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 587
Default A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / accepts command-line arguments ?

Hello All,

Question #1:

I've been looking for a while for a backup-and-restore program, but I have a
specific requirement: I would like to be able to start a backup, but even
more importantly, a restore as simple as can be (preferrably, after a
one-time configuration, just a "sure to continue Y/N ?" kind of question).

For that I would like to be able to either script both processes, or have
the program accept a set of commandline arguments.

Is there such a program available ? (could not find any using Google - most
are "live" programs needing you to fiddle settings every time)

Question #2:

Recently I became aware of a (MS) backup program called NtBackup. The
problem is that I can't find how it would be able to restore to a system
with a non-working/crashed OS, or even to a new disk (no OS at all). How
is it suppose to work ?

As I want to have a *simple* (and. if possible, fast) restore process, first
re-installing the OS and than restore the backup over it is not a viable
option.

Regards,
Rudy Wieser



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  #2  
Old July 13th 18, 06:06 PM posted to microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
J. P. Gilliver (John)[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,756
Default A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / accepts command-line arguments ?

In message , R.Wieser
writes:
Hello All,

Question #1:

I've been looking for a while for a backup-and-restore program, but I have a
specific requirement: I would like to be able to start a backup, but even
more importantly, a restore as simple as can be (preferrably, after a
one-time configuration, just a "sure to continue Y/N ?" kind of question).

For that I would like to be able to either script both processes, or have
the program accept a set of commandline arguments.

Is there such a program available ? (could not find any using Google - most
are "live" programs needing you to fiddle settings every time)


It may be possible to make Macrium and Acronis, if you use the installed
rather than the boot-from-CD part that I prefer, take command-line
arguments, for image-making. (It images several partitions - such as all
the hidden ones you need plus C: - to a single image file. It can of
course include your D: partition too, though I would back that up
differently.)

For the _restore_ from image, you boot from the CD you make (I prefer to
do that for the making of the image too): I don't think this can be
totally automated (you have to point it at _which_ image you want to
restore, for a start), but it's pretty trivial. [I'm speaking of Macrium
here, but I think the others are similar.]

Question #2:

Recently I became aware of a (MS) backup program called NtBackup. The
problem is that I can't find how it would be able to restore to a system
with a non-working/crashed OS, or even to a new disk (no OS at all). How
is it suppose to work ?


Obviously, _no_ system is going to run without loading an OS first. The
MS system backup - I'm not sure if that's the one you've found -
requires you to have a Windows CD to boot from before you can use any
image you've saved with it. (I've just noticed we're in the XP 'group; I
don't _think_ there's a built-in one in XP, I think that first came in
in 7 [or possibly Vista].)

As I want to have a *simple* (and. if possible, fast) restore process, first
re-installing the OS and than restore the backup over it is not a viable
option.


Certainly, Macrium is fairly simple (and works on XP), once you've made
the CD which is an option from the software once you've installed it -
here's how I use it:

imaging:
o boot from the CD
o select which partitions you want to image [IIRR it defaults to all
partitions; you just have to make sure to _exclude_ the one you're going
to image _to_. I exclude my D: partition too - I back that up with
synctoy]
o select which drive to put the image on
o name the image (or accept the name it suggests - usually the date)
o leave it to it

restoring from the image (including to a new disc):
o boot from the CD
o select which image (obviously, from which drive) to restore from
o leave it to it. (It will _create_ the partitions, etc. that were used
to make the image.)

[Obviously you have to have the drive to which you are going to image,
or from which you are going to restore, connected before you boot from
the CD. It knows about EIDE, SATA, and USB-external - possibly others
too; while it's booting it asks if you want to load some other drivers,
to which I say no as I'm using USB-external anyway.]

The image, in this case, will be of the OS, all software you have
installed, and all tweaks and updates you've made to both OS and
software up to the point you made the image. It isn't a matter of
installing the OS and then restoring the backup over it: what's imaged
_is_ the OS (and everything else, i. e. you end up with a system as it
was when you made the image).

It's a _lot_ more *simple* to do than to describe, once you've made the
CD!

In the case of Macrium (5 anyway [which is fine for XP], but I think 6
and 7 too), the CD required will even fit on a mini-CD; I keep it with
my backup drive. This might apply to the alternatives (Acronis, EaseUS,
others) too, I don't know.

Regards,
Rudy Wieser



John
--
J. P. Gilliver. UMRA: 1960/1985 MB++G()AL-IS-Ch++(p)[email protected]+H+Sh0!:`)DNAf

Never be led astray onto the path of virtue.
  #3  
Old July 13th 18, 07:29 PM posted to microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
R.Wieser
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 587
Default A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / accepts command-line arguments ?

John,

Question #1


... rather than the boot-from-CD part that I prefer ...


I also would prefer to make my backup when the OS I'm going to backup isn't
running. Call me daft, but I do not really trust "shadow" copies. Just one
file out of sync and you're the pisang.

For the _restore_ from image, you boot from the CD you make


In my case I would probably use an USB stick, as more-and-more 'puters have
USB support, but do not always have a CD/DVD drive.

And to be honest, that is where my idea of pre-configuring came from: Where
you can't store/change user configuration data on a CD, it should be no
problem for an USB stick.

.... on the other hand, CDs cannot easily be altered, which is a big pre when
dealing with infected computers.

It can of course include your D: partition too, though I would back that
up differently.


Same here, and its something I'm already doing: just copying (with some
filtering and a twist) the files to an external USB drive.

My best-case scenario would be to use the same disk to boot and run the
backup/restore program from, and store the backup of the OS partition on.

I don't think this can be totally automated (you have to point it at
_which_ image you want to restore, for a start)


Not quite. It could show the backupped images in order of the oldest
first, and pre-select it. :-)

... but it's pretty trivial.


It always is... up until the moment you're in a it-should-be-running-NOW
stressfull situation, and you try to remember what the heck the program is
actually asking you. :-(

Question #2:


Obviously, _no_ system is going to run without loading an OS first.


Obviously, which is why I asked. What does it need to be able to do a
restore ?

Mind you, even a DOS program could restore backuppped sectors to a
partition - regardless of filesystem. Mostly the hard part is, at backup
time, to determine which sectors need, and which do not need to be placed in
the backup.

The MS system backup - I'm not sure if that's the one you've found - ...


What I've been attented to and found is the program NtBackup.exe in the
c:\windows\system32 folder.

... requires you to have a Windows CD to boot from before you can use any
image you've saved with it


Well, there goes that idea/program (apart from it backing up a running
system) ...

I don't _think_ there's a built-in one in XP


The above one seems to be part of XPsp3. That is, I can't remember having
installed it myself (my current installation is just over year old).

Thanks for the reply and macrium usage instructions.

Regards,
Rudy Wieser


  #4  
Old July 13th 18, 08:18 PM posted to microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
Paul in Houston TX[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 814
Default A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / acceptscommand-line arguments ?

R.Wieser wrote:
Hello All,

Question #1:

I've been looking for a while for a backup-and-restore program, but I have a
specific requirement: I would like to be able to start a backup, but even
more importantly, a restore as simple as can be (preferrably, after a
one-time configuration, just a "sure to continue Y/N ?" kind of question).

For that I would like to be able to either script both processes, or have
the program accept a set of commandline arguments.

Is there such a program available ? (could not find any using Google - most
are "live" programs needing you to fiddle settings every time)

Question #2:

Recently I became aware of a (MS) backup program called NtBackup. The
problem is that I can't find how it would be able to restore to a system
with a non-working/crashed OS, or even to a new disk (no OS at all). How
is it suppose to work ?

As I want to have a *simple* (and. if possible, fast) restore process, first
re-installing the OS and than restore the backup over it is not a viable
option.

Regards,
Rudy Wieser


Take a look at Clonezilla live CD.
https://clonezilla.org/

  #5  
Old July 13th 18, 08:27 PM posted to microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
J. P. Gilliver (John)[_4_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,756
Default A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / accepts command-line arguments ?

In message , R.Wieser
writes:
John,

Question #1


... rather than the boot-from-CD part that I prefer ...


I also would prefer to make my backup when the OS I'm going to backup isn't
running. Call me daft, but I do not really trust "shadow" copies. Just one
file out of sync and you're the pisang.


Me too.

For the _restore_ from image, you boot from the CD you make


In my case I would probably use an USB stick, as more-and-more 'puters have
USB support, but do not always have a CD/DVD drive.


(My XP one didn't - netbook - but could boot from a USB one. In fact
it's almost the only time I _use_ the [USB] optical drive.)

And to be honest, that is where my idea of pre-configuring came from: Where
you can't store/change user configuration data on a CD, it should be no
problem for an USB stick.

... on the other hand, CDs cannot easily be altered, which is a big pre when
dealing with infected computers.


And - in much the same way you don't trust backing up a running system -
I like to have my image/restore software on a CD.

It can of course include your D: partition too, though I would back that
up differently.


Same here, and its something I'm already doing: just copying (with some
filtering and a twist) the files to an external USB drive.


Me too. I use SyncToy which speeds the process considerably after the
first time (by only copying what's new or has changed), but basically
it's just a copy. (I cycle round two or three such.)

My best-case scenario would be to use the same disk to boot and run the
backup/restore program from, and store the backup of the OS partition on.


That certainly ought to be possible; Macrium 5's boot CD is 2xx MB. The
images it makes are a single file.

I don't think this can be totally automated (you have to point it at
_which_ image you want to restore, for a start)


Not quite. It could show the backupped images in order of the oldest
first, and pre-select it. :-)


Hmm. Not sure if it can be configured to do that, though maybe it can.
Paul knows more about Macrium (and everything else!) than I do. (He's
just even worse than I am in wanting to give a _complete_ answer, so his
answers are sometimes overwhelming. To me anyway.)

... but it's pretty trivial.


It always is... up until the moment you're in a it-should-be-running-NOW
stressfull situation, and you try to remember what the heck the program is
actually asking you. :-(


You shouldn't be panicking when you're about to start restoring an image
- not that it matters if you get it wrong as you can always start again,
just that it takes time to restore an image. It really isn't difficult
to understand what you're doing - just choosing which image to restore
from; if you let it name the images, it'll have used the date they were
made as the name, so that choice isn't hard.

Question #2:


Obviously, _no_ system is going to run without loading an OS first.


Obviously, which is why I asked. What does it need to be able to do a
restore ?

Mind you, even a DOS program could restore backuppped sectors to a
partition - regardless of filesystem. Mostly the hard part is, at backup
time, to determine which sectors need, and which do not need to be placed in
the backup.


Macrium doesn't ask you about sectors, just partitions. (Its default
setting is only to image the parts of the partition that are occupied,
i. e. the image is smaller than the partitions you select, but it
restores them to the size they were.) And it defaults to selecting all
partitions, so it includes any you need to reconstruct a drive; I just
deselect my D: drive and, if it has selected it, my backup drive (which
you obviously _don't_ want to include).
[]
Thanks for the reply and macrium usage instructions.

Regards,
Rudy Wieser


You're welcome. I hope I've been correct in what I've said.
--
J. P. Gilliver. UMRA: 1960/1985 MB++G()AL-IS-Ch++(p)[email protected]+H+Sh0!:`)DNAf

This space unintentionally left blank.
  #6  
Old July 13th 18, 08:40 PM posted to microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
R.Wieser
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 587
Default A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / accepts command-line arguments ?

Paul,

Take a look at Clonezilla live CD.


I already am (the USB version of it). :-) Just downloaded it to take a
closer look.

The problem with that is, just as with all other "live" solutions I've
encountered, that preconfiguration does not seem to be part of it.

Regards,
Rudy Wieser


  #7  
Old July 13th 18, 09:50 PM posted to microsoft.public.windowsxp.general
R.Wieser
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 587
Default A backup-and-restore program which can be pre-configured / accepts command-line arguments ?

John,

And - in much the same way you don't trust backing up a running system -
I like to have my image/restore software on a CD.


Fair enough (and I will probably keep one handy too - just in case). Though
in the case of an USB stick not wanting to run anymore its rather easy to
re-image it. And ofcourse I would/will keep the backup-programs
installation files handy somewhere (most likely a copy on each computer I
have).

And in my case I would really like to be able to put everything (OS,
backup/restore program, OS partition backup and data files) all on a single
external drive. I would not really like it to be able to find one part, but
not the other.

but basically it's just a copy. (I cycle round two or three such.)


Exactly that. I do not want to jump to special hoops to be able to restore
a single, specific file. Just drag-and-drop the file/files/folders from the
backup drive to my data partition(s). Easy as pie, and not easy to forget.

The "twist" is that I made use of the "hard linking" NTFS offers, which
allows me to recreate, for each "smapshot", the whole foldertree with all
(except some fitered) files in it*, while only needing to copy the changes -
the non-changed files are hard-linked to an already existing copy
(effectivily de-duping the files).

*it allows me restore or delete any snapshot I made with a minimum of fuss
(no need to think about file management).

The only drawback is that I have to remember not to *change* any of the
files on the backup. There is, for XP, no copy-on-change available for
hard-linked files. :-(

Hmm. Not sure if it can be configured to do that, though maybe it can.


That would mean you would need to change (a file on) the ISO ... Never seen
that done.

.... And I ofcourse ment (whoops!) the *newest* shown first and preselected.
:-)

You shouldn't be panicking when you're about to start restoring an image


Panicking would be a too-strong a word. Its more of a (self-induced) stress
to get it working again (and figure out what the heck went wrong). And
thats just when I only have to think about myself. :-)

- not that it matters if you get it wrong as you can always start again,


True. With the OS and all the data backupped that should not be a real
problem. But not fun.

Macrium doesn't ask you about sectors, just partitions.


My apologies, I was still thinking about how NtBackup would be able to
restore the OS partition when the main OS would not want to run. In such
a case a minimal OS (DOS perhaps ?) on a rescue disk/usb stick/CD could have
done the trick.

Regards,
Rudy Wieser


 




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