View Full Version : Mandrake backing up WinXP

5th February 2004, 21:55
Hello All,

My PC now has 4 partitons, Mandrake 9.2, Linux Swap, WinXP and an empty NTFS partition.
Is it possible from Mandrake to backup my WinXP partition to the empty NTFS partition?
If so is it then possible to restore it back the other way?

Can anyone show me how to do this please.


5th February 2004, 23:05
NTFS write support has to be compiled into the kernel (or loaded as a module) in order to write to an NTFS partition, but even in 2.6.1 (haven't tried 2.6.2) it's still described as 'Partial'. I'm not sure but I'd bet Mandrake 9.2 uses a 2.4.x series kernel. NTFS write support there is described as 'Highly Experimental - only for developers'.

To be on the safe side you should format that partition to FAT32.

Why exactly do you want to do that? I suppose you could copy all of the files on that partition to the partition you want, and then copy them back again, but I haven't tried it (though i came close once) and it would also depend on a number of factors, whether you would be able to boot that system again or not (like what exactly would you do to that partition, what bootloader you use etc)

6th February 2004, 03:39
With the new "Safe" NTFS write support you can only overwrite existing files on the file system and even then you cannot change the file size.

You are stuck with fat32 if you want a filesystem that is readalbe and writable with both oses.

6th February 2004, 19:34
The reason I wanted to do this was so I could have a fresh/clean install of WinXP with all my drivers, tweaks and software installed, then I wanted to backup this setup.
Then after a few weeks of surfing the net and installing whatever rubbish on my system I could restore it back to the original fresh/clean state quickly and easily ...

Has anyone got any ideas how I can achieve this?

6th February 2004, 22:17
isn't system restore supposed to do that :confused:

anyway (given that you change the NTFS partition to FAT32 or some GNU filesystem) you can make a hard disk image of the winxp partition, but i doubt that's the best solution and it's not guaranteed it will work...

you can do e.g. 'dd if=/dev/hd{winxp partition} of=/{the partition_you_want}/winxp.img{or whatever really}'

then change 'if' with 'of' to restore the image
to get an image of the MBR (master boot record, important for booting) do 'dd if=/dev/hd{the disk who's MBR you want} of={wherever you want} bs=512 count=1'

i have never really made a hard disk image, and it can probably be done some other way as well, but i know of none other

:--: edit :--:

for the MBR image you have to specify the whole hard disk e.g. /dev/hda for the first hard disk on your system
for the partition image you have to specify the partition number, e.g. /dev/hda1 for the first partition on the firts hard disk

(the MBR image is needed just in case of a mishap)

12th February 2004, 01:39
well offcourse you could just copy all the files to the extra partition (given that you make it fat32) and then copy them back whenever you want (it's really funny how i always find the most complicated solutions to the simplest of problems...)
a friend of mine said that works fine for win98...
if you want you can also compress the files so that they take up less space: 'tar -cjf {desired filename} {path to files you wish to compress}'

j is for bzip2 compression (better)
you can use z for gzip compression