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Taming Windows Vista - Backup & Recovery Solutions

written by: sammy•edited by: Lamar Stonecypher•updated: 5/11/2009

Here is a description of some more vital flaws in Windows Vista and effective remedies to overcome these drawbacks.

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    Are you able to acquire an effective Backup with Windows Vista?

    Along with loads of other features Microsoft added a new backup tool in Windows Vista, but does this back up tool entirely live up to your expectations? This depends very much on which version of Vista you have. Users of the Home Basic and Home Premium versions are likely to be disappointed. The backup tool provided there can back up your documents and images, but not the entire drive. Users of the Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate versions get the entire package. They can do full-drive backups and schedule backup tasks in Task Manager.

    Windows Vista also enables the users to make Shadow Copies which are automatic backups made at the file level. Windows Vista Ultimate, Enterprise, and Business provide easy access to shadow copies. This is called “Previous Versions.” Users of Vista Home Basic and Home Premium don’t get access to Previous Versions, but the Shadow Copies are created just the same.

    The simplest solution for Home version users is Windows Easy Transfer which is used when you're moving your settings directly from an old PC to a new one. This application can also be used to effectively save copies of your email, favorites, documents, address book, Windows settings, or spe­cific folders to a blank DVD or a USB memory key, network location, or an external hard drive. So if you have an unexpected system crash you can use these copies to restore almost everything. To use this feature go to the search box and type Windows Easy Transfer. Now press Enter on your keyboard to see how this works.

    But if you want to have real control in your hands, you will have to install something more power­ful. There are plenty of free applications that allow you to have a professional back up of your system. One of them is Cobian Backup, a simple, yet ver­satile backup tool. Another one is Driveimage XML, a more than adequate replacement for Windows Complete PC Backup that will quickly create a complete image of your drive. Another application in this league is Shadow Explorer. But I would recommend File Hamster which is a clever program that monitors the folders and files you specify and keeps a copy whenever they are changed or overwrite­ten, so that if you lose something important it is easy to recover it fast.