I have multiple computers that I want to backup - a Windows 2000 computer, a Windows XP computer, and a Windows 7 computer. I have one external hard drive that I want to use for all of those computers.

I would like to have 3 subdirectories on the external hard drive - one subdirectory for each computer's backups. I am going to use the Cobian backup program for the Windows 2000 and XP machines, and I know that it can backup to a subdirectory on an external drive.

But I'm thinking about using the Windows Backup and Restore to backup my Windows 7 machine. Is it possible to tell Backup and Restore to store all the backups within a subdirectory on the external drive, so that it doesn't affect the Windows 2000 and XP subdirectories? Or will it take over the entire external hard drive?


Win7 Backup doesn't let you choose a sub-directory. It creates it's own directory and a system-named custom folder. However, it does not interfere with other directories you add to the drive for other purposes and does not take over the drive. Of course you want to schedule the backups at different times. And have lots of room for all the backups.

I also use Cobain copying to the same drive in other folders. And I have still other folders used by Filehamster and FEBE backups. And folders where i collect stuff to archive to DVD.

Note that Win7 Backup is an imaging tool. These are superior to standard backup tools for backing up an OS as it makes a mirrored copy of the drive rather than just copying files. Experts like Fred Langa recommend it.

  • Does it create an image of all partitions on the drive, including non-NTFS partitions? – pacoverflow Jan 29 '13 at 22:31

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