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Gotcha! Data Backup

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#1 Siginet

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 10:47 PM

Gotcha! Data Backup


UPDATE: Gotcha! Data Backup is now featured in Computer Power User Magazine! Issue January 2013 on page 72!! :)


This is my latest invention. ;) It's actually been in the works for many years. I've been using it in my internal Computer Repair company for a long time now.
It is used to backup user data from a system before reinstalling a computer... or to transfer the data to another computer. I've built in many of the much needed areas that Technicians tend to need to backup.

It can be used on a system running windows. It can also detect multiple Windows Drives and ask you which drive you wish to do backups from. This is helpful when you attach a customers drive as a slave drive on your system by connecting their drive internally in your computer or through USB. It also will work on WinPE.

Another useful feature it has is the ability to Move Files to your backup location instead of copying them. This is a great feature if you wish to quickly move all of their important data into a folder on the same drive that you will be reinstalling the system. Since all of the data is being relocated to a spot on the same drive backups will be much faster.


screenshot.jpg

Here are some of the things Gotcha! can backup:

  • Windows Product Keys
  • Office Product Keys
  • Drivers
  • Shared Docs
  • Fonts
  • Desktop
  • Favorites
  • My Documents
  • My Pictures
  • My Music
  • My Videos
  • Downloads
  • Firefox
  • Google Chrome
  • WinMail
  • Outlook Express
  • Microsoft Office

Please let me know what you think! Let me know if you come across any bugs! Let me know if you have any ideas you wish me to add as well!!

 

GotchaBACKUP.exe  or  Gotcha!.Script


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#2 steve6375

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 10:58 PM

Does this work with Windows 95 and Windows 8 64-bit?

#3 Siginet

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Posted 26 August 2012 - 10:59 PM

Does this work with Windows 95 and Windows 8 64-bit?

It works on all NT based Windows Systems. 32 bit and 64 bit.
It does not work on Windows ME 98 0r 95.
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#4 TheHive

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 06:49 AM

Awesome! How about being able to select other folder(s) to backup or move.

It can also detect multiple Windows Drives and ask you which drive you wish to do backups from.

So if you have multiple drives attached to computer that have windows installed then you would get that choice.

This is a great feature if you wish to quickly move all of their important data into a folder on the same drive that you will be reinstalling the system. Since all of the data is being relocated to a spot on the same drive backups will be much faster.

Can you eleborate on this some more. Wont the backup folder be deleted if its put on the same drive youre installing the OS to. Lets say youre doing a Factory Restore option.


Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup.jpg   37.05KB   15 downloads
Main WIndow


Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup Restore.jpg   21.37KB   17 downloads
Gotacha Data Backup SubWindow

If you selec the X Close option or Cancel button it should Exit the Restore Window but go back to the Main Gotcha Data Backup window. They shouldnt close the program. The Main Gotcha Data Backup WIndow should be the one to close the program if you click on the X close option. That is one thing that got me a bit off guard. I was like where the heck is the main window.


Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup Restore Driver Backup.jpg   42.7KB   14 downloads
Gotcha Data Backup Restore Driver Backup



Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup Backup is complete.jpg   21.38KB   15 downloads
Gotcha Data Backup Backup is complete

Thanks!
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#5 Siginet

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 05:10 PM

Awesome! How about being able to select other folder(s) to backup or move.

So if you have multiple drives attached to computer that have windows installed then you would get that choice.


Can you eleborate on this some more. Wont the backup folder be deleted if its put on the same drive youre installing the OS to. Lets say youre doing a Factory Restore option.


Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup.jpg   37.05KB   15 downloads
Main WIndow


Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup Restore.jpg   21.37KB   17 downloads
Gotacha Data Backup SubWindow

If you selec the X Close option or Cancel button it should Exit the Restore Window but go back to the Main Gotcha Data Backup window. They shouldnt close the program. The Main Gotcha Data Backup WIndow should be the one to close the program if you click on the X close option. That is one thing that got me a bit off guard. I was like where the heck is the main window.


Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup Restore Driver Backup.jpg   42.7KB   14 downloads
Gotcha Data Backup Restore Driver Backup



Attached File  Gotcha Data Backup Backup is complete.jpg   21.38KB   15 downloads
Gotcha Data Backup Backup is complete

Thanks!

The move feature is only useful if you will not be formatting the drive. What I do is perform my backup while in WinPE... then I delete everything except my Gotcha! backup folder. Then I install windows to the same drive. It sometimes can save me hours of time. Of course.... sometimes its better to do a clean format of the drive. So then I use the normal copy feature and backup to a seperate drive.

#6 Atari800XL

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 05:39 PM

Ahh, so there it is! I've been looking forward to this! I'm already a fan of your DriverGrabber, but this looks to be an even greater helper!!! I've already done 1 test, what immediately comes up is this:
Does this tool replace Drivergrabber, or do you still keep that as a separate tool?
I'm really looking forward to testing this one, as you might remember I have a little testsetup with XP, W7 and W8 on one laptop, so it'll be a lot of fun "fooling around" with Gotcha!
Thanks for all that work!

Edited by Atari800XL, 27 August 2012 - 06:33 PM.


#7 Siginet

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 06:09 PM

Ahh, so there it is! I've been looking forward to this! I'm already a fan of your DriverGrabber, but this looks to be an even greater helper!!! I've already done 1 test, what immediately comes up is this:
Does this tool replace Drivergrabber, or do you still keep that as a separate tool?
I'm really looking forward to testing this one, as you might remember I have a little testsetup with XP, W7 and W8 on one laptop, so it'll be a lot of fun "fooling around" with Gotcha!
Thanks for all that work!

Ahh, so there it is! I've been looking forward to this! I'm already a fan of your DriverGrabber, but this looks to be an even greater helper!!! I've already done 1 test, what immediately comes up is this:
Does this tool replace Drivergrabber, or do you still keep that as a separate tool?
I'm really looking forward to testing this one, as you might remember I have a little testsetup with XP, W7 and W8 on one laptop, so it'll be a lot of fun "fooling around" with Gotcha!
Thanks for all that work!


Yes DriverGrabber will remain a seperate tool. basically DriverGrabber is compiled and used within Gotcha!.
Those who want more control on DriverGrabber settings will want to use DriverGrabber seperatly.

Thanks, looking forward to your feedback!

#8 Atari800XL

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 06:31 PM

OK, I did another quick test. What I noticed: I use a custom entry in
HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerUser Shell Folders,
here I change the value of "Personal" to "D:MyData"
Am I correct in assuming that Gotcha! doesn't check this value?

#9 Siginet

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 06:52 PM

OK, I did another quick test. What I noticed: I use a custom entry in
HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerUser Shell Folders,
here I change the value of "Personal" to "D:MyData"
Am I correct in assuming that Gotcha! doesn't check this value?

Yes Gotcha does check that value. Is it not detecting your Documents data? If it is not then I may need to double check and see if my code is failing.

Do you see any info in your Gotcha!.ini file for your Documents location?

#10 Atari800XL

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 07:09 PM

It seems to work OK in XP, not in W7 and W8 (I'm talking about the "Documents" redirection here...)

Edited by Atari800XL, 27 August 2012 - 07:10 PM.


#11 Atari800XL

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Posted 27 August 2012 - 08:28 PM

One thing I would like to see in a program like this is some kind of "size prediction". The perfect solution would be if you could see beforehand exactly how much space the backup would take per category, but maybe that is too much trouble for you to make.
But what about a button beside the "Backup" button, called "Calculate space"? This way, on systems with (too) many digital photos (for example) you could do separate backups for documents and other (more?) important data. At first select one group of checkboxes, then later select the other. And maybe that would be not that difficult to program (just a "check file size" instead of an actual "copy"?). That way, you can choose an appropriate backup medium, according to the size (eg. a 1gb USB thumb drive, or a 32gb USB, or a 2tb external drive for the photo enthusiasts among your clients).

....just an idea...

[OK, one final thing I'd like to say: It's GREAT to see you actually use this in your own company! Practical tools like these are what it's all about!! Thank you so much for sharing this!)

Edited by Atari800XL, 27 August 2012 - 08:38 PM.


#12 Siginet

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Posted 28 August 2012 - 04:07 AM

One thing I would like to see in a program like this is some kind of "size prediction". The perfect solution would be if you could see beforehand exactly how much space the backup would take per category, but maybe that is too much trouble for you to make.
But what about a button beside the "Backup" button, called "Calculate space"? This way, on systems with (too) many digital photos (for example) you could do separate backups for documents and other (more?) important data. At first select one group of checkboxes, then later select the other. And maybe that would be not that difficult to program (just a "check file size" instead of an actual "copy"?). That way, you can choose an appropriate backup medium, according to the size (eg. a 1gb USB thumb drive, or a 32gb USB, or a 2tb external drive for the photo enthusiasts among your clients).

....just an idea...

[OK, one final thing I'd like to say: It's GREAT to see you actually use this in your own company! Practical tools like these are what it's all about!! Thank you so much for sharing this!)


I think that is a great idea. I like it. It would suck if it was forced... because it would slow down the process of performing the backup ... since it would need to process all of the files. But I could see it being a handy option.

I also really want to add the ability for users to create simple addons that would tell Gotcha how to backup other areas of a computer that may not normally be coded into Gotcha. Which would allow users to share addons that extend it's capabilities as well as help along further development of the program.

#13 TheHive

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Posted 01 September 2012 - 07:56 PM

Just to let you know. Testing on a real system. Will post results.

#14 TheHive

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Posted 02 September 2012 - 02:20 AM

The backup of the files seem to go smoothly. opted for the copy option.
Reinstalled os to factory.
Trying to Restore backup. Everything went ok towards the end. At the beginning Gotcha! Data Backup Restore when it started to copy the fonts back to the computer. It beeped that it couldnt do it. So I had to manually click on the ok button how ever many fonts had been backed up. The rest of the procedure went as it should.

Suggestion. Add option to stop restore and start again with different options selected to copy. Or skip font restore and continue restore.
Give option if above happens in font copying to continue with restore and auto select ok button if same error about not being able to copy backed up fonts to font folder.


Other then that I can say it does save alot of time. Thanks!

After restore. Another test.
I went back an just selected fonts as the only option to restore with copy.
I see that it does auto continue if it encounters an error. Lol! And i was clickling it on Ok the first time.

Error given

Error!
Failed to copy:
E:backupsystemfontsWHATEVER_FONT_NAME.FON

Needs option to Cancel and stop. Now have let it run its course. Really needs that option.







#15 Siginet

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Posted 02 September 2012 - 05:45 AM

The backup of the files seem to go smoothly. opted for the copy option.
Reinstalled os to factory.
Trying to Restore backup. Everything went ok towards the end. At the beginning Gotcha! Data Backup Restore when it started to copy the fonts back to the computer. It beeped that it couldnt do it. So I had to manually click on the ok button how ever many fonts had been backed up. The rest of the procedure went as it should.

Suggestion. Add option to stop restore and start again with different options selected to copy. Or skip font restore and continue restore.
Give option if above happens in font copying to continue with restore and auto select ok button if same error about not being able to copy backed up fonts to font folder.


Other then that I can say it does save alot of time. Thanks!

After restore. Another test.
I went back an just selected fonts as the only option to restore with copy.
I see that it does auto continue if it encounters an error. Lol! And i was clickling it on Ok the first time.

Error given

Error!
Failed to copy:
E:backupsystemfontsWHATEVER_FONT_NAME.FON

Needs option to Cancel and stop. Now have let it run its course. Really needs that option.







When restoring fonts on a live running system I can imagine it having any issues with fonts that are currently in use. I planned to in the future to start gathering the md5 hashes of the default fonts that are installed on a fresh windows install... so that Gotcha will know that it has no need in backing them up. This should prevent this issue. ;)

Thanks a lot for the help!! :D

#16 Holmes.Sherlock

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Posted 02 September 2012 - 06:11 AM

Here is one report:
  • Backed up my Windows product key
  • Chose the backup location as C:
  • C:Gotcha!2012-09-02SystemKeys.txt got created
  • C:Gotcha!GotchaRESTORE.exe got created
  • Double clicked on GotchaRESTORE.exe. A folder browser appeared asking to choose a backup date directory
  • C:Gotcha!2012-09-02 was selected
  • Error: "This is not a valid Gotcha Backup folder"

My system is running Windows XP SP3.

#17 Siginet

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Posted 02 September 2012 - 07:12 PM

Here is one report:

  • Backed up my Windows product key
  • Chose the backup location as C:
  • C:Gotcha!2012-09-02SystemKeys.txt got created
  • C:Gotcha!GotchaRESTORE.exe got created
  • Double clicked on GotchaRESTORE.exe. A folder browser appeared asking to choose a backup date directory
  • C:Gotcha!2012-09-02 was selected
  • Error: "This is not a valid Gotcha Backup folder"

My system is running Windows XP SP3.

I haven't coded the restore of the key yet. ;) So this is why it says it is not valid. As of now it just makes a backup of your key inside keys.txt

Thanks for reporting.

#18 Dohnut

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Posted 21 September 2012 - 04:39 PM

Siginet, first let me start by saying thisGotcha is just bad a**. Excellent work! :1st:

Now for 1 little suggestion? a click box that lets you skip the files that are already there. For instance, I have a backup that was made from a client's laptop (well over 200GB of pictures). Unfortunately the stupid laptop went to sleep right around 80% restored. Now instead of starting where it left off (or just skipping the laready copied files), I have to start all over again. :cold:

Maybe it could check the filesize between the backed up copy and the local copy, and if different go ahead and copy the backed up version over, if the same size etc, skip it?

Just a suggestion. :idea:

Keep up the great work!

#19 Siginet

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Posted 22 September 2012 - 03:39 AM

Siginet, first let me start by saying thisGotcha is just bad a**. Excellent work! :1st:

Now for 1 little suggestion? a click box that lets you skip the files that are already there. For instance, I have a backup that was made from a client's laptop (well over 200GB of pictures). Unfortunately the stupid laptop went to sleep right around 80% restored. Now instead of starting where it left off (or just skipping the laready copied files), I have to start all over again. :cold:

Maybe it could check the filesize between the backed up copy and the local copy, and if different go ahead and copy the backed up version over, if the same size etc, skip it?

Just a suggestion. :idea:

Keep up the great work!

Thanks for the review! :)
In the Gotcha Restore I have implemented md5 hash checking so that it should speed up the process on restoring files that have been currently restored. But I did not implement it into the Gotcha Backup file yet. As long as the md5 hash checking implementation seems to work out well I'll implement it into the backup file as well. ;)

I also have planned to add more options to Gotcha so that users can select what to do when encountering a file that already exists. Like overwrite or skip based on if the file that is being restored is newer.

#20 Atari800XL

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Posted 22 September 2012 - 05:13 AM

Siginet, have you checked the matter I mentioned in message #10? (Redirecting the "documents" folder in W7/W8). If so, I'm looking forward to doing some more testing!! (last test I did on this matter still didn't work!?)

#21 Dohnut

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Posted 22 September 2012 - 11:38 AM

Thanks for the review! :)
In the Gotcha Restore I have implemented md5 hash checking so that it should speed up the process on restoring files that have been currently restored. But I did not implement it into the Gotcha Backup file yet. As long as the md5 hash checking implementation seems to work out well I'll implement it into the backup file as well. ;)

I also have planned to add more options to Gotcha so that users can select what to do when encountering a file that already exists. Like overwrite or skip based on if the file that is being restored is newer.


I was half asleep when I wrote that first post. MD5 would be a brilliant way to do it. I just can't see that it is working. :suda:

Here is my scenario:
Laptop had a bad HDD, just not bad enough to not run Gotcha on it.

Step 1.) I fired up a copy of XP PE I have on cd.
Step 2.) Mapped a network drive (with credentials) to drive Z: from our file server
Step 3.) started Gotcha, chose the user data and System info (minus the fonts)
Step 4.) Pointed Gotcha to Copy the data to the mapped drive (each customer has their own folder on the server)

And off it goes on it's merry way, all the while I am free to do other things and not baby sit that particular machine. Brilliant! :clap:

Let's just leave it at, I had a reason to do it that way and not use an external, clone the drive, or other means. I know there are people reading this that are giving me eyebrows and wondering why I copied 200GB+ across a network like that, well, simply put, because I can.

The problem comes when it goes to restore the data. Doing the same thing after a fresh install, mapping drive to Z: etc etc, using the same user name they had in the pervious installation so I don't have to chase files, ok. I let the restore proceed until around 10% or so all the while noting a few of the filenames it had copied. It appears to have re-copied them over anyways even though that 10% was physically on the drive. These pictures are approx 1.3MB a piece, not usually a concern, but when copying well over 200,000 of them, makes you want to groan a bit.

I can reproduce the effects on demand, so if you need mroe information let me know.

Small note: I dabble in a few programming languages. If you would like some help, I have some free time I could sling your way. :go_fish:

#22 Siginet

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 04:54 AM

v0.5.0.2:
Fixed - Data Restore was not working properly. The MD5Hash checking code was messed up. All seems well with the world again. ;)
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#23 TheHive

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 08:41 AM

Thanks for the update!

#24 Siginet

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 12:27 AM

Updated to 0.5.0.3.
Changed - I got rid of MD5Hash Checking. It was too slow. Now Gotcha checks file dates and only overwrites if the date does not match. This makes Gotcha super fast when dealing with files that already exist.

If you enjoy this software please give me a review @:
http://fileforum.bet...up/1347855415/1

If you have any requests please reply to this thread. :)

#25 TheHive

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 06:28 AM

Thanks for the update.





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