I suggest you keep away from the Windows backup program and get yourself a good commercial backup program. I've seen forums fraught with problem reports for the Windows one. I know I was very unimpressed when I tried it. Three I'm familiar with and like are Norton Ghost (which I've been using for 8 years without the 1st problem), Easeus Todo Backup Free, which you can download from http://www.todo-backup.com/products/home/free-backup-software.htm and Memeo which has a 30 day free trial and you can buy it for $29.99 - you can download it from http://memeo.com . You can get Ghost for next to nothing (like I did) if you watch the sales.
The March 2012 issue of PC World was very high on the FREE program from Easeus and so is CNET. In my experience with a variety of configurations I have to say I'm very impressed. Like Ghost it will back up to a networked drive, and it will create a boot CD for when your PC won't boot. See CNET's review of it at
CNET has a lot of backup program reviews at
Some of these are free (last time I checked there were over 300), some have free trials (over 1000), and some are purchase only (over 200).
External hard drives are best for backup. You can get a 500 GB one for around $60 and a 1 TB one for around $70. You can also buy a 32 GB flash drive for under $15. It's the best insurance you can ever buy!
I hope this helps. Good luck
I recently downloaded this program and trying for the first time to make an image copy of my C drive which has the OP system XP. I get as far as the window where it shows the source and the destination...fine...I click on the button at the bottom that says 'next' and the next window comes up with the 'next' button greyed out......apparently its not working..possibly my fault. I am trying to make the image on another hard drive which only appears as "F" drive, which is how it appears on MyComputer list. I don't know if this program would make an image or copy to another hd..so that is the only thing I can think of why its not going forward. ..any Macrium users here?