Re: Operating System Restore from files-backup In comparing Acronis to Stompsoft, the latter provides for a distinction between regular and specialized system state backups, in which they include the entire Windows directory and the Program Files directory, besides the file-less configuration data, in system state. But their approach to restorin unbootable windows is to first install Windows XP again from a nearly complete copy of Microsoft's install CD (which is generated from all the files on the CD you must provide; a little convenience is added in that you can add any number drivers to it so no floppies are needed -- a most obsolete device). Then a separate system state backup can be loaded from hard disk or media. The problem is that their only way to boot from media is to install an entire obsolete windows from slow media, while Acronis loads a short recovery environment fairly quickly from media. Everything can then be restored from hard-disk backup, in less time than it takes to install all the Windows files from a CD. The initial install is useless as well because of all the updates microsoft makes, often for security matters. Unlike Acronis, Stompsoft performs writes to DVD media. But this cannot be used on a regular basis because of the slow speed, so it is not that big a matter at least for operating system backups. Operating system and program backups must be made either to a reserved area of the hard disk, perhaps with RAID hardware protection, or to an external hard drive. Stompsoft does not appear to support stealthed "secure zone" partitions, either. But they seem a bit more meticulous about details, as in giving special attention to backups of the backup system logs themselves. Incidentally, microsoft update downloads are stored permanently in \Windows\software distribution\download, and anything there can be reinstalled through Windows Update online without downloading again. The contents of the updates can be read by archiver WinRAR, which understands .CAB files. A batch file of some sort is probably constructable which would install all the updates unattended (someone even has a file which does entire windows installs unattended, for production line-like servicing of entire offices -- insert all the media and go to lunch).