Windows 7 Backup Cannot Be Restored RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have scheduled image and data backups made every Sunday using the Backup utility included with Windows 7. The RAID array that stores my OS and data volumes had a catastrophic failure that was unrecoverable. I rebuilt the array but was not able to retain the partitions they contained. I did this with assurance that at least i have backups made every Sunday.

    Well, I booted to WINRE and attempted to locate the backup on the external eSATA drive where the backups are located. However, I received message that no backups existed. I pointed directly to the external drive and it still did not appear. Pressed Shift-F10 to open a command prompt, ran Diskpart, and it does indeed see the drive and volume. Connecting the drive to another computer does show the WindowsImageBackup folder, backup folder with VHD files, and several XML files. I am able to restore a test file on this backup from within Windows 7 on another computer. WBADMIN GET VERSIONS also does not show the backup.

    So the problem is that WINRE cannot see the image backup even though it is there. I suspect it might be a problem with the catalog not being visible or corrupt. BTW, i do not use this drive for anything else and have not touched or modified any of its contents since the backup was made.

    Does anyone have an idea how i might be able to make the image backup visible to WINRE and recover these volumes?

    Saturday, June 12, 2010 2:59 PM

All replies

  • OK I actually had to create my first help desk ticket with Microsoft on this one. Short story: I know more about backup than the first tech that tried to troubleshoot this with me. This went absolutely nowhere for days on end. Finally I asked to escalate to a senior technician. Initially, also no luck. then we found that there was a missing file somewhere and he sent me these instructions that also included an email attachment.

    I never attempted to implement the solution below because I found a different solution. I downloaded Acronis True Image Home 2010. It is able to convert the VHD files from the backup into .TIB files used by Acronis. Then, i restored from those backup files, ran a startup repair from WinRE, and was back in business. Acronis saved the day. 

    <<When a backup is created on a volume on a hard disk, a file called mediaid.bin is added to the root of the volume. This file is used to recognize the backups on the volume and if missing, it will not do the same.


    1.Unzip the file and rename it from sdutil.ex_ to sdutil.exe
    2.Copy the sdutil.exe to the root of the driver which contains the backup files
    3.Open the folder Catalogs located bellow the folder BackupSet “aaaammdd” “xxxxxx”
    4.Copy the file GlobalCatalog.wbcat to the root of this HD
    5.Go to Start -> Execute and type CMD.exe
    6. At this “DOS” window type the HDD letter of your backup disk (as an example F:\).  This will change the following command to execute directly on the backup drive rather than addressing that drive with a command on C:\  type sdutil mediaid GlobalCatalog.wbcat [HD letter (as an example F:\)]
    7.A new MediaID.bin is created
    8.Try to restore the backup as usual using the advanced restore option and next the option restore an older backup created in this machine
    9.If done: it’s over!
    10.If it fails: Map a network driver at your LAN
    11.Copy the MediaId.bin file to the root of the previous mapped LAN driver
    12.Copy the whole folder BackupSet “aaaammdd” “xxxxxx” to this same driver
    13.Try to restore the backup as usual using the advanced restore option and next the option restore backup created in another machine
    14.At the next menu, point the backup folder at your LAN mapped driver and start the restore process
    15.Now you shall have your backup proper restored at the right machine>>

    Thursday, June 24, 2010 1:05 AM