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NoelC

What's it Going to Take to Restore Previous Versions from Shadow C

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I'm with you, but I've been with a couple of big companies in my life and I think it's explainable... Decisions can be made by some people who either have an agenda or don't know what they're doing, and others won't agree with them. This often yields a logic-free result. Think "Dilbert".

I've seen it bring big, vibrant companies completely down. It's not healthy.

-Noel

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Yep :), and specifically to MS, we have the know "This is by design" statement :w00t::ph34r: , which I personally read as "Ok, you just got us with our hands in the marmalade, and since we are too d@mn smart to admit anything, and we don't care enough for the user and we are not going to fix this which is evidently a (possibly serious) malfunctioning, we will state that it was done on purpose".

JFYI:

http://reboot.pro/topic/3541-how-many-microsoft-programmers-does-it-take-to-screw-in-a-light-bulb/

Specific example :whistle::

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/252135/en-us

jaclaz

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People think of the word design as having some kind of magical meaning - as though everything that's designed must be good. Perhaps we can thank the automobile companies and their well-funded marketing television presence for this.

Most folks don't realize that there can be poor designs.

A bug might make well-designed software work badly in certain cases. But there's hope because a bug can be fixed.

A poorly designed piece of software just does what it does, and it's up to us whether we perceive value in it. Sometimes it's a bit of crap shoot. For example, I tested Windows 8.1 quite thoroughly, including backup and restoral processes, and even exercised some shadow copy access software - all on virtual machines. When I chose to upgrade my workstation to run Windows 8.1 full-time I knew pretty well that it would work, and I had already solved the major "really need that functionality" type issues. But until you use something long-term you really can't find all the little quirks. Traditionally those are small enough that they can be worked-around, and ultimately maybe the design is actually changed and the bugs fixed by Microsoft.

That said, I wonder why there have been no Windows Updates for something like 3 weeks...

-Noel

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FYI as a follow-up:

 

I've been able to use Z-VSScopy successfully as needed to restore backed-up files from volume shadow copies.

 

What I do is leave the service not started, then when I bring up Z-VSSCopy it takes me to its Service tab, which allows me to start its service.  When I've done that, all my shadow copies appear in the Shadow copies tab.  From there, if I double click one of them, I can see all files and folders backed up, and can restore any one of them easily.

 

Once I'm done with restoral activity, I simply return to the Service tab, and stop the service again.  Pretty painless, and more functional ultimately than Microsoft's Previous Versions feature, because you can see the names of all the backed-up files, vs. (assuming having deleted an important file) having to remember where a file was and what it was named to use Previous Versions.

 

-Noel

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In order to retrieve individual files from System Restore points you can use System Restore Explorer with which you can mount them as virtual drives.

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Got a link? 

 

There was a tool I evaluated that sounded a bit like that, but called Shadow Explorer, that had a decent UI but actually corrupted the data when retrieving the backup files.  The author seemed uninterested in making it work for Windows 8+.  The product has gotten no further attention.

 

-Noel

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VSS specifically VSSadmin has features that are locked to Windows NT Server [server 2012]

 

There are ways to trick it into thinking it runs on Server 2012, perhaps this can be adapted to UI libraries and such as well.

 

Someone has shared ASM and source code to a proof of concept way to do just that and I have used it for vssadmin a few times to reinstate the "Vssadmin create shadow" command that only works if the vssadmin binary thinks its running on Server. 

 

It can be compiled easily in VS. 

 

Source: http://flaming-grackles.tumblr.com/post/41091667883/some-notes-on-reinstating-shadow-copies-on-windows-8

Edited by Rfire

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It works well enough for my needs via wbadmin.

 

-Noel

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There is also the "Windows 7(?) file restore" or something like that (I translate from Greek) in the control panel which in fact has to do with disk backups - as I found by chance - and is probably the GUI analog to wbadmin.

Edited by HarryTri

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That's not in Windows 8.1, HarryTri.

 

-Noel

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It is in Windows 8 and must be in Windows 8.1, have a look at the Control Panel>System and Security>File History and it is in the "See also" section down in the left.

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Sorry, I misunderstood you.  Yes, you can manually make a System Image backup from the FIle History panel as you say.  I thought you meant the panel specifically entitled "Windows 7 File Restoral", which has been removed.

 

-Noel

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 I thought you meant the panel specifically entitled "Windows 7 File Restoral", which has been removed.

 

That's exactly what I meant but it seems that they moved this functionality to the File History panel per what you say.

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Windows 7 File Restoral did more than just allow a System Image backup.

 

Here's all you see in Win 8.1:

 

W81FileHistoryDialog.png

 

W81SystemImageDialog.png

 

 

My backup is running right now, and I don't want to start VMware to boot up my Win 8 VM, but I'll follow up when the backup finishes and show what I see in Windows 8 for Windows 7 File Recovery.

 

-Noel

 

 

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