Happy New Year!
Last time we finished with using CompletePC to backup the OS partitions/drives as well as work files and left with the question: how do I restore just my data/work drive, just a folder, or even just a file? Today's blog discusses a solution that (I think) is quite satisfactory. Please read on...
Restoring the entire computer:
CompletePC backup/restore does allow restoration of all the backup boot partitions/drives and optionally the individual data partitions/drives. This is the default capability for CompletePC Backup and Restore. If this is what you want, everything you need is built-in.
Restoring a Folder or a File:
As discussed in the last post, CompletePC backup/restore does not allow finer-granularity restoration of a folder or file. Fortunately, there is a solution using a tool called VHDMount which comes with Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 Beta 2. (Don't forget the Beta 2 part!) There are many blogs that describes how VHDMount work and there is no need to rehash the discussion here. Here is a brief description of what VHDMount can do for Vista CompletePC backups:
For each partition/drive that is backed up, CompletePC creates a .vhd file in the backup destination
VHDMount is a command line tool which takes the .vhd file and "mounts" it as a drive (like M:\)
Once the .vhd file is mounted as a drive, you can use Window Explorer (or whatever tools) to copy/restore whichever folder(s) or file(s)
One thing that is a little clumpsy with this technique is that you cannot easily associate which .vhd file to which previously backed up partition/drive by just visual inspection of the file name. The .vhd file name has the format similar to <guid>.vhd - not readily translated to which drive that was backed up.
Here are some links to downloading, installing, and customization of VHDMount.
- Downloading Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 Beta 2: http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserversystem/virtualserver/downloads/servicepack.mspx
- Installing Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 Beta 2 and using VHDMount: http://community.bartdesmet.net/blogs/bart/archive/2006/09/02/4385.aspx
- Adding VHDMount to Windows Explorer shell for quick and easy mounting .vhd files: http://blogs.msdn.com/virtual_pc_guy/archive/2006/09/01/734435.aspx
At this point, I've tried VHDMount to access backed up my partitions/drives and found it to work very well. I am now a happy camper with Vista backup and restore!
That's all I have for Vista Backup and Restore. Have fun!