Personal Backup

© 2001 - , Dr. J. Rathlev

(32 and 64 Bit)

(32 and 64 bit)

Features Add-ons Utilities Tips and tricks Mirror sites
FAQs Translations Online help Tutorials Help as PDF file
License Version 4.5 Donate Search 

Personal Backup 6.1

Version 6 provides all familiar functions of Version 5, and offers a Control Panel (see screenshot at upper right) as an important new feature. The panel presents a summary of all important information in a clearly-arranged form. Just a few clicks are required to change the configurations and start your backups. The new functions at a glance:

New features since version 5.9

Notes on version 5.9: This Version is still available, but there will be no further development. Due to this, an update to version 6 is recommended. All existing backup tasks (buj-files) are fully compatible.

All familiar features at a glance

The 32-bit version runs under Windows 7, 8 and 10 (32- & 64-bit), Windows Vista, Windows XP (with some limitations - see here), the 64-bit only under Windows 7, 8 and 10 (64-bit) and the corresponding Windows Server versions.

English, German, Dutch, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Hungarian can be selected as desktop languages for Version 6. The help files are available in English and German The new version has been tested extensively but nevertheless it can be that some functions or a combination of particular options will not work properly. If so, please report such instances to me.
Notes on installation: Version 6 can be installed in parallel to Version 5. On first start, all settings from the previous version will be inherited and saved in its own directory (%APPDATA%\PersBackup6\). All backup tasks (buj-files) are fully compatible but while running any automatic backups, make sure that they are activated in only one of the two versions.
Notes on backups using Windows Task Scheduler: Each scheduled task created under Version 5 must be changed manually to run under Version 6. To do this, just call the Task Scheduler from inside the program, double-click the task to be changed and click the Next button to retain all settings. A final click on the Done button will update the selected entry automatically to be run using Version 6.


Download Version

* Notes about the OpenPGP signature Klick

If you have installed Gpg4Win (e.g. for encryption of mails) on your system, you can use this program to verify the Personal Backup downloads. Just download the signature file associated to the respective version (see above) and store it in the same directory as the setup file. Then open the context menu of this file in Windows Explorer or any other file manager by right-clicking and select Decrypt and verify.
If the required certificate has not yet been registered in Gpg4Win (see the list in the program Kleopatra), it can be downloaded as zip file (fingerprint: 7CF5551F18F2D73473DE3C92FABB85A8FB26BCBD) and then imported in Kleopatra.

Included Translations:

Click on language to show desktop.

Note: If you feel that a translation could benefit from improvements or corrections, I would be pleased to hear from you. Anyone wishing to help will find information on how to proceed here.

Download of translation files


Overview of included add-ons

In addition to the main program Personal Backup the installation file contains the following tools:


New features since version 5.9

In addition to the well-known features there are the following improvements:


The program at a glance

Personal Backup is a program for saving personal data to any destination folder. This folder may be located on a local fixed or removable drive, on a Windows network server or on an FTP server. The 32-bit version runs under Windows 7, 8 and 10 (32- & 64-bit), Windows Vista, Windows XP and Windows Server 2003/2008(R2)/2012(R2), the 64-bit only under Windows 7, 8 and 10 (64-bit) and Windows Server 2008(R2)/2012(R2).
You can configure and store as many backup tasks as you wish. The selection of the files to be backed up is made on a by-folder basis. All subfolders are included automatically, but the user can exclude or include any subdirectories from or in the backup by selection or by filter. Additional criteria are the selection by file type, file age and/or file name filter.
At the destination folder the original drives (C:, D:, etc.) appear as subdirectories named LwC, LwD, etc. The original directory structure remains unchanged beneath these folders. All files may be compressed in gzip, either in toto or separated by subfolders as zip files. Optionally all data can be AES algorithm-encrypted.
Performing the backup can be done manually or automatically. During the backup the program checks whether the file to be saved is newer than one already backed up. Only new files and files with newer timestamps are saved. An alternate criteria is the archive bit of the files.
Automatic backups can be started on logon, at a selectable time of day, on logoff or on shutdown. You can make scheduled backups with destination paths changing daily or weekly.
For individual schedules it is easy to start a backup using the Windows Task Scheduler and the command line options of the program.

Note: Personal Backup cannot be used to save and restore system files.

The features in detail:

Release notes

Other notes:

Personal Backup Version 5 is created using an IDE (currently Delphi 10 Seattle by Embarcadero) which has full Unicode support and overcomes the ANSI (ISO-8859) filenames limitations on copying files. Also path lengths may be longer than 260 characters.

The most important enhancements in that respect:

Windows 98/ME are no longer supported. Users of these systems can download the legacy version 4.5




More Information about version 5

Languages: English, German, French, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Hungarian and Russian


Other download sites:

Of late, ever more download sites make freeware programs available not in their original version but with modified installers or using download managers. The latter can be recognized by their relatively small file size (mostly about 500 kB) and in either case the user may run the risk that additional, unwanted programs, such as browser toolbars and adware or spyware, will be installed without warning. Subsequent removal of this software often turns out to be very difficult.
To avoid any tacit support of such unfair practices, I have removed all links to download sites offering anything other than my original setup files.



The former version can be downloaded from here:

Download version (2017-08-22):


The former version can be downloaded from here:

Download version (2016-04-18):
Older versions


Further information

Compressing as gzip

The existing standard for the gzip format (RFC1952 of 1996) calls for the filename to be stored in the file header using the ISO-8859-1 character set. I could not find any recommendations as to how to handle Unicode filenames.

The current Linux version of the program gzip used for creating and reading gz archives differs from the above standard and stores filenames in UTF-8 format. The OS byte in the header is set to 3 (Unix).

Until version 4, Personal Backup has set this byte to 0 (FAT) and saved the filename per ISO-8859-1. To be compatible with previous versions and also to support Unicode, two variants are used in Version 5:

Hence the problem arises that other programs (such as WinZip or WinRar) will correctly detect the stored filename only with the first variant. This has, however, no effect on the unpacking of the files.

It would of course be better to use one of the unused bits the FLG byte as a criteria for the coding of the filename. The current zip format does it in this way (see below).

Creating zip archives

The current zip format specification version: 6.3.3 dated September 2012 defines how Unicode filenames are to be processed: if bit 11 of the "general purpose bit flag" is set, filename and comment are in UTF-8 coding. Personal Backup uses this convention. Unfortunately not all file-compression programs currently support this new format. Among those that do are WinZip 12, 7-zip 9.20, IZArc 4.1.6 and WinRar 3.80, whereas Windows Explorer does not yet support the new format even under Windows 7.


All passwords for FTP, for SMTP and AES encryption must be coded per ISO-8859-1.

Length of file paths

For filenames (inc. path), the 260-character limitation still applies to certain Windows versions (more info). This limitation appears no longer to apply first of all under Windows 7. Under older operating systems, e.g. XP, all applications using Windows shell components, such as Explorer, cannot process longer file paths.
Everywhere where Personal Backup refers to shell components (e.g. in a directory- or file-selection dialog), the path length limitation applies even for Version 5 except with Windows 7 and newer.
Internally, the program uses UNC paths (e.g. when copying files) which may have a maximum length of about 32000 characters. With Version 5 it is therefore possible to backup, restore and delete files with paths exceeding the above limit, even when many file managers (including Windows Explorer) will fail on scanning such a directory tree. One file manager that supports long filenames is Total Commander Version 7.5 .


Version 4.5

Version 4.5 works with all current Windows systems and Windows 98/ME. It supports only the West European character set (ISO 8859) and pathnames up to 260 characters.

Note: There will be no further development of this version! Version 5 is recommended for use with current operating systems. Version 5 may be installed alongside version 4.5. The old tasks and settings will largely be inherited.

Download Version released 2011-04-15
Windows setup (5.54 MB)
(MD5: fb71c5e5a671f3c75066bb8f7e8de3f9)
Update as zip file Release notes (only German)



This package contains programs useful for automating backup processes and to rescue data from damaged zip archives.

Tools for USB drives

On Uwe Sieber's webpage you will find several very useful tools to mange USB devices like drives or sticks:


Personal-Backup everywhere

Many thanks to Jim Scharfenberg Jones for proofreading my English

Visitors since 2007-02-09: