Backup and Recovery

Best backup practices and recovering lost data.

How can I make recovery disks for Windows 10?

Larry from Petaluma, CA

Episode 1213

Larry has a new Dell desktop with Windows 10. He wants to know how to create a recovery backup. It fails every time when he writes it to USB. He asked Dell, but they say they can't because they don't have recovery disks yet.

Leo says it could be as easy as a bad or unsupported thumb drive. He should try a different thumb drive. If that doesn't work, a third party utility like the EaseUS Windows 10 Migration Utility will do the job.

What can I do if my Windows 10 install fails?

Rob from Vacaville, CA

Episode 1211

Rob got an invitation to upgrade to Windows 10, it died right in the middle of the upgrade, and now he can't do anything. He tried to revert to Windows 7 but it won't work. He's heard that his RAID may be the culprit. Leo says if he can boot to his Windows 7 DVD, he should be able to format and reinstall. Leo believes that Rob's RAID array or his hard drive has likely failed. So he may have to rebuild everything.

How can I recover images and videos from a broken Droid Turbo?

Episode 1211

Victor from Camarillo, CA
Droid Turbo

Victor bought a Droid Turbo and took a lot of pictures and videos of a graduation ceremony. But after a couple days, Victor wasn't able to get the phone to turn on. Only half of his photos and videos got up to the cloud. How can he get the rest off the phone?

Leo says that DriveSavers can do it, but it won't be cheap. It also depends on the failure. If the OS failed, then the data should still be there.

Why is Microsoft's Backup Utility not completing the backup?

Richard from Southern California

Episode 1210

Richard can't do a backup -- it just stops. Leo suggests running "ChkDisk" to see that everything is OK with the data. But Leo also says that Microsoft's backup program isn't all that great because it dumps all of the data into one giant furball of 1s and 0s. That means it has a single point of failure. And there's no way to know if it has it all of the data or not.

Does Mac OS X have restore points?

Brian from Lancaster, CA

Episode 1203

Brian got his first Mac and he's wondering if he has system restore points on the Mac. Leo says no. System restore points are unique to Windows. But Apple does have Time Machine, which offers version control on documents.

Apple's OS X doesn't have a need for it because it strictly controls hardware so he won't have issue with drivers and the like. Also, it doesn't have those issues with viruses.

How can I create a boot recovery CD?

Matt from Ventura, CA

Episode 1202

Matt wants to create restore discs for his computer. Leo says that's always a good idea, so that he can restore back to the factory configuration before he starts diagnosing. Making one on a USB key is a great option. He can also buy recovery discs from the manufacturer if he'd rather not do it. Leo recommends the Ultimate Boot CD and HiRen (or HBCD). Both should be free. It has some great utilities.

How can I access all my data from multiple devices?

Marian from Santa Ana, CA

Episode 1189

Marian needs to connect five wireless devices to the same storage. Leo says that the easiest would be to buy storage in the cloud. iCloud would be the best option for Marian's Apple needs, and she can direct data to be automatically backed up to iCloud and then access all of it from any of her devices. Videos is going to be a challenge, though. But for images, Apple's new Photos app does it all automatically once she turns on iCloud Drive. It'll also put size appropriate versions for her device automatically, which will save space.