Tag Archives: copy

Probe System Restore Points With Free System Restore Explorer

imageHave you ever wanted to access a file, or an application, within a System Restore Point? You can do just that with a neat little freebie – System Restore Explorer.

Running System Restore Explorer will allow you to “Mount” a System Restore Point and you’ll then have the “go ahead” to browse and copy files or, launch an application from within the selected System Restore Point. As well, System Restore Explorer provides an option to delete selected restore points.

A brief walkthrough:

I have chosen to mount a restore point created on November 29, as illustrated below. Note that System Restore Explorer displays the date and time of the restore point creation, as well as a brief description.


Mounting a restore point automatically runs Windows Explorer, and as the following screen capture illustrates (click the graphic to expand), I now have access to (in this case), HarddiskVolumeShadowCopy3.


Expanding HarddiskVolumeShadowCopy3 provides access to the applications in the restore point, and for this test, I have chosen to execute the graphic application, IrfanView.


Clicking on the IrfanView executable (i_view32.exe), promptly launched the application, as illustrated below.


System requirements: Windows Vista, Win 7 – 32-bit and 64-bit.

Download at: Developer’s site

You may not often need to dig inside a System Restore Point, but if you do, having this freebie in your toolkit will make the job that much easier.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.


Filed under 64 Bit Software, downloads, Freeware, System Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools

Simple Backup With Free Mirror

Hard Drive Diag We talk a lot on this Blog about how important it is to have a current backup of all of your critical data, and given the state of the Internet today with its epidemic of malware, there’s a good chance, that at some point, you’ll need this backup.

If you’re not too worried about the malware threat to your data, then consider this. Just like death and taxes are a certainty, the fact that your computer’s Hard Drive will crash one day and refuse to respond, is every bit as certain.

As I wrote here recently; in the last 18 months I have had to deal with three Hard Drive failures – not on the same machine of course. While this may be slightly unusual, it does illustrate that Hard Drives do fail.

So backups are important – critically important. Despite the critical importance of Hard Drive backups, most computer technicians will tell you that typically, computer users’ do not backup their irreplaceable data.

The best backup strategy includes imaging your Hard Drives and partitions, since that allows you to restore your important data, your complete operating system, as well as your installed applications, user settings, etc.

frustrated 2 If you should suffer catastrophic Hard Drive failure and you are one of the few, out of the ordinary, computer users who regularly and faithfully backup, you will have a lot of work ahead of you but you will recover. If you do not have a backup plan, it’s time you though seriously about developing one.

Yes, I know there is effort involved in learning how to protect your data by developing and implementing a backup plan. But without a plan, your data becomes a hostage to fortune. Your Hard Drive might be damaged by malware – it might not. Your Hard Drive might fail – it might not. But why take the risk? At a minimum, you need to backup, or copy, your irreplaceable data to a partition (in case of malware infection), secondary Hard Drive, or a USB drive.

For now, let’s just focus on copying your critical data from your Hard Drive to another media.

Mirror is an interesting freeware application that will allow you to copy (mirror) a folder structure from one location to another – from a Hard Drive to a USB drive, for example.

Here’s the best part – once you have mirrored (copied), a folder and it’s structure to another media, rerunning Mirror on the same folder will only copy new or changed files – a sort of incremental backup.

The Mirror interface is as simple as an interface can be, as the following graphic illustrates.


Fast facts:


Portable – no installation required

Compatible with – USB Keys, Removable Hard Drives, Zip Drives, Floppy Disks, Flash Memory Cards, MP3 Players


Very fast

Recommendation: Mirror is a fast and easy way to ensure you will not lose your irreplaceable data. In my view, this small free application is a “must have” for a typical user. Consider adding it to your utility toolbox today.

System Requirements: Windows 98/2000/Me/XP/Vista.

Note: I tested Mirror successfully on Win 7.

Download at: PCWorld

Note: October 11 @ 8:35 AM eastern time – a number of readers have advised that the developers site is down. Hopefully, this is temporary.

If you enjoyed this article, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.


Filed under Backup Applications, Backup Tools, downloads, Freeware, Software, System Security, USB, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools