Backup and Restore Your Hard Drive in Windows 7/Vista

There are a lot of software in internet, by which you can create and restore a backup of your hard drive but a large number among them does not work in Windows Vista/7. Often, at the time of restoration, the backup file made by a third party software either does not work or crash your operating system. So it’s preferable to create a backup by such a program which is provided by your operating system. Windows Vista/7 provides you this facility. Take a backup of your computer before system crash and store it in a safe location for restoration.

This article will discuss the method to create a clone of your hard drive or entire system including documents and settings, installed programs, registry settings, personal data etc. As a XML document file you can further process it. I hope since now you will never be in trouble when your computer will crash. You can also create a system repair disc which will help you in future to repair Windows 7.

Backup Creating Procedure:

1. Click on Start menu and open the Control panel. At the left side of the window click on the “Back up your computer” option.


2. Look at the left pane, there will be two options, one for creating a backup of your entire system and the other for creating a system disc. Click on the first to create a backup file.


3. Now an another window will appear to select the saving location of the drive image file. There will be three options, first one for saving it in your hard drive, second for write in a CD or DVD, and the last one for uploading. Here we choose the first option. Select the drive from a drop down list and then click “Next” at bottom.

4. Now select the hard drive/drives which you want to create a backup. See the screenshot below, the operating system installed drive will be selected by default. If you want to add the remaining drives to take a backup just tick the small square box beside the drive symbol. Here in my PC Windows 7 is installed in drive D:/ and that’s why it has automatically selected the drive. Click on “Next” to continue.


5. An another window will open containing the details of your given instructions. Click on “Start backup” at bottom. I have done a backup for 28GB and it came to 23GB.


6. Now the backup creating process will start and take several minutes to finish. It will create the backup in XML document format.


Restoring Backup Procedure:

I have tested the method in Windows 7 but it works in Vista also. Once the backup is created now you have to restore it.

1. Follow step 1-2 of Backup Creating Procedure and click on the “Recover system settings or your computer” option.


2. Now the interface will be changed and click on “Advanced recovery method” to restore your computer using the just created drive image.


3. Look at the window. There will be two options first one for restore your computer using the newly created image and the other for reinstalling by your Windows 7 disc. The previous files will be kept in a Windows.old folder and you can further retrieve the files from here. Choose the first option to use the backup image.


4. Now a window will open to remind you whether you want to store the last updated data in a removable drive or not. Simply click “skip” to continue.


5. Just click on the “Restart” button and it will automatically start to restore the just created backup after restarting. Windows Vista allows you to browse the backup file from your hard drive but in Windows 7 the system will automatically detect the backup file from hard drive.


6. Just before the restoration process starts, a alert window will appear to ask for your confirmation. Click “yes”.


7. The restoration process will start and it will take around 15 minutes.


Quick Restore Procedure:

1. Follow backup creating step1-2 of backup creating procedure and then click on the “Recover system settings or your computer’” option.


2. Now click on the option “Open System Restore”.


3. This will show you two options, one of which will suggest you for restoring with recommended method. Select this method and click on “Next”. You can change the restore point by selecting the second method.


4. Thus you will get a confirmation window to restore. Click on “Finish” to continue. Now an another final confirmation window will open. Click on “Yes”.


System Repair Disc Creating Procedure:

1. Click on the “Create a system repair disc” option in step 2 of Backup Creating Procedure.

2. A small window will  open. Insert a blank DVD and hit the  “Create disc” button to finally create the system repair disc. It will take a few minutes.


3. Boot the newly created DVD by restarting your computer.

4. Choose your language and select “Repair your computer” option.

I hope you will face no problem during the backup creating and restoring session. So don’t waste time and take a backup of your computer because near about 30000 viruses are launching per day.

Abhishek Palit

Abhishek Palit is the administrator and author of Softtricks. He regularly writes there on Windows tips, blogging tips, software application, web application etc. Now he is a contributing writer in maketecheasier to share his experience with you.

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