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Restore Application –Specific Files and Folders

written by: Joli Ballew•edited by: Bill Bunter•updated: 5/5/2010

If you ever need to restore from CD, DVD, or external drive backups you manually created, you’ll need to know some tricks of the trade especially when it comes to application-specific files.

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    Restoring Application-Specific Files

    Application-specific files require a little sleuthing to restore. First, you’ll have to remember the location from which you backed them up. If you can remember that, simply drag and drop from the media to the appropriate folder on the PC. If you can’t remember where that is, you’ll need to open the application, create a file, and choose Save As. Wherever the data saves by default is where you’ll need to restored backed-up files.

    In programs such as Microsoft Outlook that offer Import commands from the File menu, you’ll want to import data using their specific utility. In Microsoft Outlook, you’ll choose the File menu, then Import and Export, and finally, Outlook. When you see the import option, you can often use a wizard to import backed-up data.

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    Restoring with a Microsoft-specific backup

    If you need to restore using a backup created with Windows Backup,the Backup and Restore Center, or Windows Home Server, you’ll need to perform the restore on the same PC or on one with the same operating system as the one you had previously. You can’t restore a backup created on a Windows 2000 PC to a Windows XP or Windows Vista PC; it just doesn’t work that way. As you work though the restore process, you’ll select the backup you want to use, select where to restore the backed-up files (there are three options: Original Location, Alternate Location, and Single Folder), set the restore options, and then start the restore operation.

    As an example, to restore using Windows Backup, follow these steps:

    1. Open Windows Backup.

    2. Expand File, and select the backup to use. Figure 12-23 shows this option.

    3. Select an option for restoring files. Original Location puts the files back where they were initially, and Alternate Location and Single Folder allow you to browse for the location to save to. If you choose one of the latter two, click Browse and locate a place to save the data.

    4. Click Start Restore.

    5. In the Confirm Restore dialog box, click Advanced to view the advanced options, or click OK. We advise leaving the advanced options as they are.

    6. When the restore process ends, click Close and exit the backup utility.

    Using Vista’s Backup and Restore Center is similar, as is Windows Home Server, and as are most third-party backup applications.