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Hi, i am running windows vista on my HP desktop computer, and i am trying to back up all my files onto an external hard drive so i can deal with a hard drive problem. The bigger problem is that i think that my hard drive problem is preventing me from backing up my files. before i go my external hard drive i backed up to one of my internal ones, but now when i try to change the settings it wont let me select the drives to back up and it says (Missing) 0 bytes free space 0 bytes total space. and it wont let me check the box next to them to select them.
Anyone have any idea what i should do?

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Last Post by Nickair
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Hi, i am running windows vista on my HP desktop computer, and i am trying to back up all my files onto an external hard drive so i can deal with a hard drive problem. The bigger problem is that i think that my hard drive problem is preventing me from backing up my files. before i go my external hard drive i backed up to one of my internal ones, but now when i try to change the settings it wont let me select the drives to back up and it says (Missing) 0 bytes free space 0 bytes total space. and it wont let me check the box next to them to select them.
Anyone have any idea what i should do?

OK, just so we're on the same page here, what steps did you use to back-up, and also, are you trying to to create a disc-image (prob not advisable, as any HDD issues you're try to fix will be bundled with the image) or simply back up all you personal files??

If your goal is simply to backup your files etc, you can always do it all manually, copying all the individual folders one at a time... takes a little longer, but at least you know exactly what you end up saving

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i was trying to use the back up utility windows provides. Backup and Restore Center.

That's true that the problem might be copied with it...im planning on taking it into get fixed where i bought it ...i have a warranty on it.

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i was trying to use the back up utility windows provides. Backup and Restore Center.

That's true that the problem might be copied with it...im planning on taking it into get fixed where i bought it ...i have a warranty on it.

OK - so does sound like you're trying to create a disc image rather than just backing up personal data. Again, a little dubious as to the value of this, as will be bundling the error (I'm assuming the pesky Ghost folder??) along with it.

Now just brought up the Help info on Backup and Restore Centre... remember I'm on Win7, and I'm not using the service in this OS as pretty much all my stuff is automatically saved to the external HDD (Firefox and uTorrent both set to use a directory on the HDD, and everything else of value promptly moved across as a matter of course - I also always back up my FF profile to HDD on a regular basis, so if my system crashes I really don't lose anything at all), so is a little difficult to give a step-by-step run-through. That being said, you should be able to easily reconfigure Backup and Restore settings.

Now rather than pasting in info from Win7, open Help from Start Menu and lookup "Backup and Restore Center" - there should be an entry there on changing settings, with a direct link to the service.

Now again, cautioning against bothering with the service. Is much simpler to simply copy what you know you need rather than letting Windows decided for you. See one possibility with the ghost folder issue is that it may actually be tied into the profile not the OS install, so even backing up just the profile for later restore could still see you right back where you started.

I'd also be inquiring with the dealer if a software/OS issue is even covered under warranty (it isn't always), and if it is, whether their "solution" will to simply wipe the HDD and reinstall Windows... as that is the most common tactic, and one that you simply do yourself, and without being without your system for the days it will be gone if the dealer has to do the job!!


As I mentioned in the other topic, it really comes down to how much time and effort you really want to spend on a ghost folder that doesn't appear to be causing any problems - is it actually worth chasing your tail, or being without a computer for days over??

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Well my main problem is not the folder...it is the clicking hard drive and blue screens and also there are other problems that are begining to occur which i think is the cause of a virus or something. I dont know if you are familiar with Comcast's McAfee Security Suite but i have that installed on my computer and this past week it was acting funny, not being able to fix itself, and unable to update...and many other problems..

What i think i will do because i just remembered when i bought the computer i burned the factory settings onto a CD..i think i will just copy all the files i want to save onto my external drive and then use these disks to restore to factory settings...but im still worried that my hard drive is bad...what do you think?

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Also another thing, my external hard drive is a 1TB Western Digital brand and it has some back up programs installed on it...would they do the same thing? There is a general file backup and then there is an application backup too. are you familiar with this brand?

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Hi Nickair - one of the reasons why I asked in your other thread what the names were of the deleted hidden files was to judge whether or not they were likely to be trojans.

In this thread, this is the first time that you've thought there may be a virus or trojan. Of course, that changes the picture entirely. There is a ton of remedial information on the Virus forum of this site involving HijackThis and MalwareBytes to check whether or not you are infected.

If you wanted to check the infection possibility, just download MalwareBytes AntiMalware and let it run. The full scan should take around 3 hours on a large disk drive. It'll quarantine and fix trojans etc.

The other way, is to copy off files you know you want to keep onto a USB attached drive - using Explorer. After that, you have to be careful. If you have a Windows Vista DVD, you can boot from it in repair mode and wipe your hard disk properly with FDISK (using also the MBR - Master Boot Record - function) and then a full format. Thereafter you can restore your original image.

If you don't have a Vista DVD, then the image restore ought to be enough but there might be issues with what could have been planted onto other partitions. I'm vague here, because I wouldn't trust anything if I was going to go back to the beginning and I'd wipe the thing clean first.

Before you bring your files back to your working hard drive, make sure you have McAfee with latest updates up and running and have your external hard drive scanned by McAfee.

Let us know.

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well... the reason i never brought up a virus or trojan as my problem is because i assumed that McAfee would have informed me if it was, and also i assumed that people on this forums would bring up that possibility when giving advice. And the hidden files i believe were just shadow copies that were visible because i left hidden file view on accidentally.

Anyway, i am currently copying all my music,picture,document and video files that i want to keep onto my external drive as i am typing. Like i said before i made that disc vista recommends you to make to restore the computer to the factory settings as if i just bought it and booted it up. my concern as i said is that the drive is damaged to begin with. i have a 2 year warranty which will expire about another year from now. i bought it last july...and had some issues with it to begin with that i fixed temporarily i guess judging by my current situation.

so i want to clear up something you said about the disc image restore...(i am unable to use Vistas backup utility at the moment for some unknown reason except that it could be a hard drive error like i stated above...), but is the factory cd i made the same thing essentially?

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You didn't mention how the "factory CD" was made. The utility that made it is usually the utility that will restore it or will have a restore counterpart.

If you have a bad drive, then having backed up the files you want (and assuming for now no Malware - which wasn'r suspected because you had described a problem class faced by many any the past) you could use the Windows Repair Mode or boot to command prompt and run chkdsk to see if there are errors. If there are errors, you can fix them with /f or /r - double check by chkdsk /? for the full list of commands. If the errors occurred in system files, then a fix may not work and your problem could worsen leaving you with little alternative but to restore your factory image.

There is also a utility tab you can run directly from Windows using the Properties for the drive to test its integrity. (Properties/Tools/Check Now).

There may be a Restore Partition provided by HP and some instructions on how to utilise it. My Tosh has a factory image that I made and Toshiba provide instructions on how to restore it.

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So i went an did a system recovery, and reverted to factory settings. I think ill be problem free when it comes to the back up issue. Thanks for the help.

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this issue was fixed when i reset my computer to its original settings. Thanks.

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