Screenshots: You can use Windows XP backup in Windows 8

Restore a Windows XP backup in Windows 8

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If you are using Windows XP and regularly backup your data to an external hard disk using Windows XP's Backup Utility, chances are that you imagined that when it was time to move to a new Windows 8 computer, you would simply restore your backup into the new operating system. Or maybe you have found yourself with a completely dead Windows XP computer and all you have left is your trusty external hard disk containing a recent backup created with Windows XP's Backup Utility.

Regardless of your situation, you will not be happy to learn that Windows 8's backup and restore tools are completely different from the Backup Utility that came with Windows XP and as such the backup files are incompatible. You'll also not be happy to learn that while Microsoft provided supplemental utilities that were designed to allow you to restore a Windows XP backup in Windows Vista and for Windows 7; they haven't done so for Windows 8. And, to add insult to injury, neither of the previous supplemental utilities will work in Windows 8.

Fortunately, you will be very happy to learn there's a way that you can make Windows XP's Backup Utility run in Windows 8. Of course, I wouldn't recommend using it on a regular basis, but this technique works perfectly fine to restore a Windows XP backup in Windows 8.

In this article, I'll show you how to get Windows XP's Backup Utility to run in Windows 8. I'll then walk you through a restore operation and pass along some pointers as I do.

Credit: Images by Greg Shultz for TechRepublic

By Greg Shultz

Greg Shultz is a freelance Technical Writer. Previously, he has worked as Documentation Specialist in the software industry, a Technical Support Specialist in educational industry, and a Technical Journalist in the computer publishing industry.