Well, the back up is there on my external hard drive - check.

My wife, the IT professional, wants to stay clear of any computer issues at home - cant blame her, really - so, she wants to "see" the files in the back up - now, that'd be nice. However, my understanding is that is an option - you can't click on the BACKUP file and see, photos, for instance.

Question - Is there a way to verify that all files are there and not corrupted? The files were verified in the back up process. But my wife would like to see for herself.

Any suggestions?


It depends on how you backed up the files. If you used windows backup then you can look at the catalogue and verify the files exist in the backup and have the same size as the original file. If you simply copied the files to the drive then you can actually look at the files on the drive just as you did on drive C:. If you can tell me the OS and method used to back the files up I/we can provide more information.

Hi rch1231 - The system is Windows XP Media Center - 2004. The back up was completed using Windows back up - What is the "catalogue" you mention? On my external drive, there is an icon that Windows created given the BASCKUP file name I labled it. But when I click on that, it asks be to "restore."

I hear what you say about just copying the files - looks like that was done once before, as there is an old backup on the disk that my wife must have done two years ago.

So, I would go in the C drive and find he folders to all tunes, pics, and docs and simply copy them to an external drive, correct? If that's the answer, sweeet!! If you would let me know, I'd surely appreciate it. Thanks,


Ok you can view the catalogue of what files are in the backup. The safest way I know of is to go to Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, Backup. From the you have 3 options, select Restore and it will let you select the file and there is an option (drop down list I think) at the bottom that will select where to restore the files to.

As far as the external drive yes you can simply copy entire directories to the drive. It is probably drive E: or F: on your system. If you use the right mouse button to drag a file to another location it gives you the option to move or copy. I mention this because sometimes windows decides you wanted to move the files not copy them and they disappear from the original location. This way you decide.

Rodney's rules for backups:

  • If you have only one it is corrupt on the file you need.
  • If you have two, both are fine and you will never need them.....

What I suggest is to keep copies of your My Documents folder in a zipped file with the date as part of the name. Hopefully you have something like winzip or winrar that you can use to create a compressed copy of the directory with. You can use the windows option to create a compressed directory if nothing else.

For example on my backup storage array I have the following files that I can search through as needed:

MyDocuments020107.rar 8,145Mb
MyDocuments060108.rar 11,342Mb
MyDocuments092109.rar 15,239Mb

Yes I have duplicates in the backups but "Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it." (Drill Sargent Hunter, Army Basic, 1976).

Hello - Great information. I do as suggested, in regard to copying the files to my external drive. Thakns for you help. This board is great!