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Restoring ancient Nero backups (nbi)

Discussion in 'Nero discussion' started by HenryJ, Mar 10, 2021.

  1. HenryJ

    HenryJ Newbie

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    Back in 2005-06, I created some backup DVDs using Nero BackItUp (version unknown.) Now, 15 years later, I am trying to restore them but I no longer have the original software used to make the backups.

    A lot of the data is directly recoverable but it seems that every disc in the backup set has some files with a .bt_ extension and I have had no luck deciphering them.

    I have resorted to downloading some old versions of Nero but they either install but claim the demo period has expired or they try to update DirectX and, after clicking okay, abort the install.

    I have also tried the latest free version of Nero from their website but when I feed it an .nbi file, it claims that I need to purchase the latest version of the tool (with no proof that the newest version handles these old backups.)

    Finally, I checked Nero's FAQs regarding restoring old backups and they recommend that you use the original software that was used to generate the backup -- again, I no longer have it.

    Does anyone have some suggestions as to how to restore these old backups?

    Regards,

    Henry
     
  2. wither 1

    wither 1 Regular member

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    Try changing the extension of the .nbi files to .zip. Open them with a good .zip program such as 7-zip, J-zip etc. If your old files are shown, use the programs Extract feature to extract the files to a folder of your choice.

    Does that help?
     
  3. HenryJ

    HenryJ Newbie

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    Sorry, no -- it did not help. The .nbi file was not recognized as a valid zip archive by either Win10's native unzip capability or the latest version of 7-zip.

    I've been looking at the structure of the backups a little more and here's what I see:

    Any file that spans two DVDs have had its extension changed to .nb_ and the filename appears to be an abbreviated name (from back when files were 8 characters names + 3 character extensions.) I haven't tried to merge two parts back together to see if the file is intact.

    Any file that fits completely on a DVD appears to be untouched.

    The last DVD of the backup set contains the .nbi file (Nero Backitup Information file?) which is a binary file and appears to be some sort of manifest of the files in the backup including full path information. This file is supposed to be used to restore the backup.

    This does not appear to be a traditional zip archive so it looks like I need advise on how to get a very old version of Nero running (under Windows 10.)

    Any other ideas?
     
  4. wither 1

    wither 1 Regular member

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    The reason the filenames are abbreviated is that the original backup probably used compression. It doesn't affect the content of the file.

    Would you upload one of your .nbi files to a website such as dropbox, wetransfer, etc., share it, and get a link? If so, post the link here so I can download it and try to recover the files.

    I should have been more specific. I'd like the last .nbi file on disc 2.
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2021
  5. HenryJ

    HenryJ Newbie

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    I should have been more specific as well: there is only one .nbi file for any given backup set.

    I was backing up 750GB drives using two layer DVD discs, so each backup set encompassed 10 DVD discs in total. The lone .nbi file was on disc 10 of each backup set. The .nb_ files were on nearly every disc and only when a particular file spanned two discs. In this circumstance, there was an abbreviated filename on each disc that the file spanned. No other files had an abbreviated filename. No other files were compressed in any way that I can detect.

    I cannot publicly share any of these backup sets as they may contain copyrighted material -- I can't be sure. So I cannot provide the lone .nbi file on the last disc of a backup set.
     
  6. wither 1

    wither 1 Regular member

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    There's a setting one can make for spanning discs. I'd have to look to see if it's in NB but I know there's one in Burning Rom.

    To recover such a backup, you have to make the last disc accessible to NB first, if you're trying to recover from an installed version of NB. The problem is, and what I've always thought is a fallacy in NB, is that to recover a backup in this manner, one needs the job files. However, those are stored on the drive from which the backup was made. If you no longer have it, then you're stuck. However, for those instances, Nero created the ImageTool which allows one to create a bootable disc. One can boot a computer from the disc and recover backups without the job files. To create the ImageTool, one needs a purchased version of Nero. The last version of NB to have the ImageTool is v12. However, the latest versions of Nero are supposed to be able to recover old backups but, once again, "I think" it needs the job files. I use v12 to do backups because it allows backup of OS files, which the newer ones don't.

    Did you try to change the extension of any of the nb_ files to .zip?

    I don't know what copyrighted material has to do with anything. In my 12 years in the Nero forum, I requested that people provide me with all kinds of files/folders 100's of times. Some they gave me were porn but I don't care. I did what I had to do with them and then deleted them.

    Elsewise, I have nothing else to suggest to you.
     
  7. scorpNZ

    scorpNZ Active member

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  8. wither 1

    wither 1 Regular member

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    Follow what I said regarding not having the job files or the ImageTool.
     
  9. wither 1

    wither 1 Regular member

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    HenryJ- (first thing I thought about when I saw that name is the Henry J car from the early 1950's)

    Have you given up on this?
     

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