Disaster Recovery FAQs

We encourage you to read this section, along with the questions and answers that follow so you are familiar with the issues encountered when you need to perform a recovery that necessitates the restoration of your Windows Operating System (OS) and your data. This type of recovery happens when you replace a hard drive or replace your entire computer.

Operating System Notes

Disaster Recovery means starting from scratch – you have a blank or new hard drive with perhaps no operating system on it. In order to recover your data from Backup for Workgroups Backup Server, you must install a temporary copy of Windows on this new hard drive. We call this a temporary operating system, because when you perform a complete Disaster Recovery, the temporary copy of Windows is replaced by the copy of Windows that you were using at the time of your last backup.

It is important to note that you cannot just use “any version” of Windows as your temporary copy. You must use the same version of Windows and the same service pack level that you were using at the time of your last backup. You do not need to apply any automatic updates, you just need to install the same version of Windows with the same service pack level. Once you have the temporary copy of Windows installed on the new hard drive, you can follow the appropriate recovery steps included on your personalized Disaster Recovery Report.

Disaster Recovery FAQs

Q:  When I install the temporary copy of Windows for the disaster recovery process, do I need to also re-install any Service Packs or Microsoft Patches?

A:  Yes you need to re-install the same Service Pack that you were last using.  But, you do not need to re-apply the Microsoft Patches (Automatic Updates). 

Q:  Does the restore process need working space during the restoration process?

A:  Yes. Since you need to install a temporary copy of Windows, this temporary copy will take up space during the restoration process. You need to allow for the size of the temporary copy of Windows in addition to your original files. Typically, this temporary copy of Windows uses between 1 to 2 GB of disk space, depending upon the version of Windows that you use as the temporary copy. 

Q:  What are the steps involved with restoration when I have upgraded my Windows Operating System along the way? For example, I need to replace my hard drive, which was originally formatted with Windows XP and subsequently upgraded to Windows 7. Do I need to install Windows XP on my new hard drive and then install the Windows 7 upgrade before restoring my computer?

A:  No, you do not need to re-install Windows XP first. You need to only install Windows 7 and the same service pack that you were running at the time of your last backup.

Q:  I cannot remember what service pack I was using at the time of my last backup. Is there any way to figure this out?

A:  Yes. Go to the Backup Server, highlight the name of your client account and press the Client Summary button. It will show you the version of Windows, including any service pack information, that you were running at the time of your last backup. This information is also available on your Disaster Recovery Report, which you can print from the Backup Server, too.

Q:  What happens when I purchase a new computer that comes with a newer version of Windows preinstalled? For example, I was backing up my Windows XP computer. Now I would like to transfer all my data to my new computer that is running Windows 7. 

A:  When you find yourself in this situation, you have to make a choice on which restoration method you would like to use; the reformatting method or the selective file restore method. You can either reformat your new hard drive and avoid re-installing all your old applications or you can choose to not reformat your new hard drive and selectively restore files using the Backup Client, then manually re-install all your old applications. It is up to you as to which route you would like to take.   

Here's a brief summary of the steps involved with both restoration methods:

Reformatting Method. Reformat the hard drive in your new computer and install a temporary copy of Windows that matches the same version and service pack you were using at the time of your last backup. You can print a Disaster Recovery Report and follow the steps provided to reformat the hard drive and to install your temporary copy of Windows. Follow along with the Disaster Recovery Report instructions to install your Backup Client and complete the data recovery process. Once you have recovered your files, you may choose to upgrade just the Operating System to Windows XP with the software that came with your new computer. When you choose to recover your data in this manner, you will not need to reinstall each application because the Backup Client will do this for you.  – OR –

Selective File Restore Method. If you do not want to reformat the hard drive in your new computer, you can selectively restore your data files and manually reload your applications. In this case, you will not be following the steps on a Disaster Recovery Report. You will need to install the Backup Client on your new computer. And your new computer will need to have access to the Backup Server computer in order to restore your data.  Run the Backup Client and on the Restore panel, press the SELECTED FILES button. DO NOT PRESS THE DISASTER RECOVERY BUTTON!  Use the Select Files dialog to select any files you would like to restore. You will then need to reinstall any applications that you were using on your old computer by using the installation CDs provided by each application manufacturer.