Need to restore old backups made in '91.

November 5, 2010 at 07:48:49
Specs: Windows XP
Backup files on 3.5" floppy. Probably from WfW3.11. Made is '91, file name is arc.001.

Can I get the operating system so I can put it on an old computer????


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#1
November 5, 2010 at 14:10:14
What software created those backups ??

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#2
November 5, 2010 at 14:40:55
I am not sure but I would guess it was a WfW backup which would have used MS-DOS 5 or 6

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#3
November 6, 2010 at 13:04:33
It may not be necessary to have a whole operating system installed for that file. With the extension .001, you just need to change the extension to .txt and get some idea what kind of file it is. It looks like a generic .arc (archive compression format), but that is not necessarily so. Copy the file first, in case changing the extension and looking at it in notepad causes it to corrupt. Not likely to happen, but why take a chance?

Obviously you still need a floppy drive. It is true that after about 2002 or 2003 almost every manufactured desktop PC does not have one pre-fitted. Someone you know should have one somewhere.


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#4
November 8, 2010 at 07:38:52
I have tried that. Unfortunately, when DOS did the backup, it packed several files together in some form that reduced the file size, and added headers that told it what the file was called and where it was stored. When I went into notepad or wordpad, I have nto been able to figure out what those file markers are so I cannot separate the files again.

I guess I am stuck trying to set up a new "old" computer and see if I can get the files back that way.

Thanks for the help.


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#5
November 12, 2010 at 02:26:44
If it was truly from 1991, then it couldn't have been WfWG (Win3.1 didn't exist before Apr. 1992, WfWG 3.11 until Nov. 1993):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeli...

Likely it's a DOS-based backup (DOS 5 would be the latest version available in '91):

http://www.computerhope.com/history...

Your best bet would be to find someone with an older machine running DOS to salvage the data. Don't hold out too much hope though; floppies sitting for that much time will quite possibly have many errors and most backup programs of that day placed a catalog file on the last disk (to determine how many disks in the backup). If the catalog file is damaged, then the data is likely not salvageable...

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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#6
November 12, 2010 at 04:50:57
Thanks! Whoever made the disks dated them on the label so I am pretty sure about that. THe link to the History of DOS was particularly helpful. Now I have a good idea about the versions I am looking for. The backups are in sets, so I will have the catalog file. Now I am trying to find a copy of the operating systems to see what I can do. EBay seems to be my best choice and they do have some offers that are worth a shot (a lot better than spending all my time on other options)

Thanks again!!


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#7
November 13, 2010 at 03:34:36
Another thing to consider is how familiar are you with command-line (DOS)? You may want to also get some guidance once you find what you need (I'm sure any of us here would be glad to assist).

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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#8
November 15, 2010 at 04:35:11
I can probably get that far back in my memory. I started working with computers in the 60's when the computer took up a floor of the buildng. If I need some help though, I will get back to you. Thanks!

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#9
November 17, 2010 at 08:57:12
This is getting harry again. I talked with the guy who did the backups. He said that he did it with a "new" program at the time and described using Windows 3.1 which came out about then. I now have WIN 95 CD, Win 3.1 floppies (both legit MS disks that work) and what is supposed to be boot disks for MS DOS versions 3.3 and 4.01. I can get the computer to boot with the CD or the boot disk for WIN 95, but not any other system. I am wondering if DOS 3.3 and 4.01 were for the 5-1/4" floppies and will not run from a 3-1/2" floppy. If that is not the problem, do you know where I can get a good boot disk for 3.3 or 4.01?

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#10
November 17, 2010 at 10:36:31
Again, if it's from 1991, then Windows 3.0 would have been the latest version available again. Irregardless, you'd almost certainly have to have the "new" program to restore the backup data, since compression/encryption methods would vary from program to program. MS-DOS 3.3 thru 6.22 was available on both 3 1/2" and 5 1/4" disks, but if it was a Windows-based program doing the backup, then it may not matter which version was being used. Plus you need to completely install DOS and whatever version of Windows was being used with the "new" program. Here's a site for Ver 5.0 to 6.22 DOS bootdisks (earlier versions may be difficult to find):

http://www.bootdisk.com/bootdisk.htm

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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#11
November 17, 2010 at 12:39:59
THat is what I was afraid of. I have tried bootdisk.com, computer hope.com, allbootdisks.com, and some other sites with no luck. It looks like I am going to have to get the dso versions, probably from ebay or something like that.

MANY THANKS FOR YOUR HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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#12
November 24, 2010 at 10:45:58
i was a kid back then and i remember that when i compressed a large game to put it on several floppys i used a program called ARJ. the files on the floppys whe then for example : doom.arj (the main file) doom.001 (the second floppy) doom.002, doom.003 and so on. It was a popular way to compress files in ms-dos and make backups in the early 90s. So there is a large chance that it is been that way. you can open arj files in windows in a compress program like winRAR or winZIP.

I hope that it have been helpful for you

(i am from belgium, excuses for my bad english)


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#13
January 3, 2011 at 08:24:23
wait to buy dos!!!! you can get FREEDOS for free. it's totally MSDOS compatible

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#14
February 23, 2011 at 12:30:06
So far, I have tried DOS 3.0, 3.3, 4.01, 5.0 and 6.0, Windows 3.1, 3.11, 95, 98, vista, and 7. None of those will get the files back. I have tried Central Point B ackup but that does not work either. I have tried a bunch of current unzippers but they do not do much for me either.

What I have is a series of floppies with a series of files called ARC.001 on the first, ARC.002 on the second and so forth. Inside these files is a bunch of smaller files, up to 20. What I need to find is the software that created the archive so that I can run it and get my data back.

Does anybody have any more ideas??????


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#15
February 23, 2011 at 12:41:33
Have a look at this article from Microsoft, although I hold out little hope as it begins to sound like a non-standard backup program created these files.

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#16
March 2, 2011 at 06:57:34
Thanks again to all. I have gotten a copy of Norton Backup. It says that the backups are not Norton Backups. MS-Dos also says that the files are not MSDOS backups. Neither refers to the versions, so I guess I am still looking to see if I can find what software was used. At least both Norton and MSDOS indicate that they are backups.

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#17
March 4, 2011 at 02:49:41
Not sure if this will help, but Wikipedia has a list of backup software. If the list doesn't jog your memory, possibly one of them may be able to restore the disks to a newer OS (but I'd make sure before I plunked-down any money for them):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."


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