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Windows recovery disks


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#1
jhn-e-bee

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Hi Geeks,

Just wanted to ask a quick question about a recovery disk I made last year. Last october my laptop was robbed from me and as a result I lost some extremely important files involving my business plan that i have been working on and also all the research that i did. It occured to me a while ago that i made a recovery CD in case i had a crash last year. what i was wondering was would the files that i lost be on the recovery CD and can i access them without completely re installing that version of windows on my new(second hand actually) machine. The back up i made was on a vista machine but I am actually on xp at present. I do not really want to upgrade this machine to vista as it does not really have the memory.

Any ideas about this would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance,

John B.
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#2
Macboatmaster

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The answer is basically:-
Would the files I lost be on the Recovery CD.? "I cannot know the answer, if it was a complete image recovery YES. If it was a Documents and Settings etc. It depends on where they were, and what you backed up to the CD.
IF IT WAS A CD and not a DVD then presumably it is NOT a full image recovery. as a CD is 780Mb as against 4.2Gb for a DVD
Can I recover them? "Again I cannot know the answer at this stage - presumably YES, what system was used to prepare the backup.
Can they be recovered on XP? "Generally Office documents even if they were written on a different Office system can be read in compatability Mode if necessary."
At this stage, more detail is required.
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#3
jhn-e-bee

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Actually it was a DVD, it was a hp presario running vista which I bought about two years ago, it had a DVD re-writer and I used one of my blank DVD/R disks from a 25 pack that I have had about a year or so.

I could not tell you myself if it was an image recovery or not, I cannot even remember the program I used to make it with. All I remember was it was a free program that I downloaded for free online.

I supose what I really need to know is if I would be OK to stick it in my XP laptop that I have now and access files that were saved from my previous vista laptop without it running a recover session and wiping what I have on my computer now. What I understand from a recover disk is that they are designed to sort out your machine in the event of windows failing, like BSoD or something. As in re-installing windows and possibly files that you had saved. Obviously I do not want to stick it in and end up causing problems.

Thanks for the quick reply.

John B.
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#4
Macboatmaster

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I am sorry, but with the information you have, it is impossible for me or anyone else to advise you with certainty.
If the program was pre-installed on the computer and it had instructions on how to prepare a recovery DVD, then there is every chance that the DVD will ONLY run as a RECOVERY program.
Depending on how the system, built in by the "manufacturers" of the Laptop, to prepare the Recovery DVD was set up, determines WHAT was on it and indeed HOW it can be recovered.
My best advice is to email HP with the details ie: (Presario) recovery and ask them.
It is very unlikely that inserting the DVD and right clicking EXPLORE, will do anything other than show you the contents, which will either be listed as just a RECOVERY folder or separately identifiable.
Do NOT allow it to autorun. Albeit, it will probably ASK "Do you wish to continue."
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#5
jhn-e-bee

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That's all I wanted to know really. I know you cannot know exactly what is on the disk, I just wanted to find out that it would not start to do something that I could not stop and then end up with all my files wiped. I shall stick it in and see what happens, now I know that I will get an option to abort any auto-run process. The only reason I asked was because I have never had to use a recovery disk before and was not absolutly sure how they worked. Plus, when you lose four years of research you find yourself looking for any option to try and recover the info, no matter how extreme that might be, it was a lot of work.

Oh, and before you say it, I know I should have backed it all up, lol.

Thank You, You have been very helpful,

John B.
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#6
123Runner

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There are literally hundreds of recovery programs. Some are paid and some are free. As stated, some will back up just files while others will do an image of the drive. Some can be opened and explored.

Just be careful with what you do. Usually if it is a full recovery program from say HP you have to answer questions to continue. Also if it is a image of the drive you usually have to boot from the image creators CD/ floppy to start the recovery.
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