Asking for an assessment on the best option to backup an HDD

Discussion in 'Operating Systems' started by Ma-dazz, Jul 21, 2018.

  1. Ma-dazz

    Ma-dazz Member

    Messages:
    41
    I own a dual-boot computer, with one partition being XP and the other one being Ubuntu 14.04 (1st screenshot is from GParted for more details). I want to upgrade my XP partition to Windows 7, but that means that all my data will be deleted, therefore I have to back it up somehow. I have 2 potential ways to do this:

    1. Just copy the data on an external HDD (specifically a WD My Passport 4TB drive) while on Ubuntu. This sounds very simple, but the problem is a) that I'm not sure how the disk will react with Ubuntu and b) that large file transfers in Ubuntu end up making the OS completely unresponsive and aren't finished as they are intended to. I won't experiment with the former until someone tells me it's OK. I tried to fix the latter (specifically this link https://blog.programster.org/fix-freezes-when-transferring-files ), but everytime I try to enter any command or press the enter button after the first command it gives me a "sorry, try again" message, requesting me to type my very correct password again and again).

    2. Create a small Windows 7 partition from inside the XP one, use my external HDD to backup the files from it, delete that small partition, re-attach it back to the XP one and then (finally) re-install Windows 7. I'm not sure how to make a new partition with GParted, however, and if creating and deleting a partition like that will negatively affect my HDD.

    My request from whoever is reading this is that you assess one of the 2 solutions and help me with implementing it.

    I also have another problem which is secondary and will be irrelevant soon (after I stop using XP) but, for future reference, would be cool if there was a solution to it. It's depicted in the second picture attached, and it appears right after the WinXP loading screen. It doesn't allow me to boot with any way possible, and also I don't get presented with the opportunity to recover the system in any way possible when I insert the installation CD. Any ideas?
     

    Attached Files:

  2. johnb35

    johnb35 Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    40,746
    So you are saying Xp won't boot up at all? If not, why don't you take the drive out of your computer and attach it to someone else's and use the external to copy your data to it. All you can back up is personal data anyway. Games and applications can't be backed up as they will need to be reinstalled.
    Sounds like its not booting to the XP install cd. Can be caused by cd drive not reading cd correctly, cd not being bootable, first boot device not being set for cd drive in bios.
     
  3. Ma-dazz

    Ma-dazz Member

    Messages:
    41
    It's quite a bit of work, plus the only other PC that I have also has WinXP installed, is really old, and the external HDD doesn't support WinXP (Win7 and up). If I try and back up my data via WinXP, that means I have to reformat the drive once for the external HDD to accept WinXP and then once more for it to accept Win7. This will be useless since I won't have a means of transferring the data back to the new OS once it's installed. Ubuntu isn't the primary OS I use so booting into that whenever I want to use my external HDD isn't practical either.

    Do you mean I can't use the CD? I'm more than 100% sure when I say that it's perfectly usable, because whenever I insert it and use it, I have to re-install GRUB afterwards. This wouldn't happen if I couldn't use the CD.
     
  4. johnb35

    johnb35 Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    40,746
    There is no reason why the external drive won't work with XP as long as the external is formatted in a way that XP is compatible with like ntfs. If the cd is bootable then you should see "press any button to boot to cd" message at startup with cd inserted. If there is no message then its either wrong first boot device set in bios or something up with drive or cd.
     
  5. Ma-dazz

    Ma-dazz Member

    Messages:
    41
    I'll try that. How good is XP at transferring about 1TB of data to an external HDD?

    That's right, this message does appear. But still, the CD doesn't present me any option for recovery. The closest it gets to that (which is not close at all) is that it instructs me to press F2 for Automated System Recovery (ASR), which is useless because a) it requires a diskette to be initiated, and b) I don't have a diskette drive or any software to do that.
     
  6. johnb35

    johnb35 Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    40,746
    Just like any other OS.

    Follow this guide to do a repair install of XP.

    https://www.lifewire.com/how-to-perform-a-windows-xp-repair-install-2624915

    If you are unable to get to step 6 then it seems XP is corrupt and that why it doesn't detect an installation to repair.
     
  7. Ma-dazz

    Ma-dazz Member

    Messages:
    41
    Think I should do a follow-up on this one.

    Windows XP didn't recognize the external HDD, as I expected. On the contrary, Ubuntu did a very good job both at detecting and using it and transferring the files to it. I used grsync (graphical UI for rsync) to transfer them, it was very easy but I had no idea how much time I had left since it was constantly changing the completion percentage. Couldn't expect any better from Ubuntu on that specific thing, but it did the job as it should.

    The installation went much easier than expected. Turns out I didn't even need to backup anything, Windows 7 gave me the option to store every old file in a Windows.old directory, then installed itself as it should.
     

Share This Page