I work in a computer repair shop. One of the most time consuming tasks I perform is removing a customer's hard drive, connecting it to another computer, backing up all the data, then formating and reloading the drive (unless the drive is failing in which case I install a new drive and try to recover the data from the old one).
Their are a few different methods I use to get this done. I don't like any of them:
1) I connect the drive to another computer and copy the data using "xcopy olddrive:\*.* localdrive:\backup\ /s/e/v/c/h/y".
2) I use OnTrack's EasyRecovery software to select the folders/files I want to backup.
3) I clone the drive using Norton Ghost, then reconnect the cloned drive after the format/reload and copy the data with 1) or 2).
I don't like the xcopy method because it is time consuming, it copies many files I don't need, and requires that I go into each user account to delete the Temporary Internet Files so it doesn't give me an "Insufficient Memory Error" in the middle of the copy. I don't like the OnTrack method, because in many cases it dumps a bunch of otherwise perfectly copyable files into a huge LOSTFILE folder for no reason whatsoever.
What I do like about the xcopy method is that it tends to insure that I get all of the customer's data backed up. What I REALLY like about the OnTrack method, is that it gives me a directory tree to select the files I want and don't want, and allows me to recover data from problematic hard drives. What I like about both is that they do not require compression/decompression and copy the files as is.
I know there is a better way to get done what I have been doing for years the long and laborious way. I know the experts here can help!
Thank you in advance.