I did some deeper searching on other newsgroups and found the solution!
The .VHD file is clearly accessible on the portable drive, so using the help
found in the links below, I managed to get full access to it so that I could
copy selected files to my real hard drive just using Explorer.
1. This very helpful article let me know that I needed Microsoft Virtual
Server -- a Vista compatible product.
2. I downloaded and installed the "Virtual Server 2005 R2 SP1 Beta" from
Microsoft Connect at this link:
3. It required me to have activated the Windows Vista components for
Internet Information Services (IIS), which I did via Programs and Features
off the Control Panel. (That is, the first time I tried the install, it
didn't quite complete. After activating everything, I tried it again and it
4. I then used the vhdmount utility, described in the article, to
successfully mount that .VHD file as a virtual drive. The drive's root
directory then appeared in Explorer under the drive letter I assigned it: my
entire old C: drive.
5. After a time-consuming assortment of administrative permission
adjustments so I that could look at, access, and copy, I got my files!
6. I also followed the instructions in this help article for future ease of
mounting the drive:
Thanks to the previous posters for their help.
"victorcamp" <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote in message
> On Windows Vista Ultimate I made a complete backup using the Backup and
> Restore Center ("Back up computer") to a USB 100Gb portable drive. It went
> fine, and the drive shows a WindowsImageBackup folder on its root. It
> totals about 65Gb. 2 days later that laptop crashed and I got another
> laptop with the same Windows Vista Ultimate. I want to restore some
> selected files (client work, not system or application) to the new laptop.
> When I choose Advanced Restore -> Advanced Restore -> Files from a backup
> made on a different computer -> Hard disk, CD, or DVD -> PHOTON F: (the
> name of the USB 100Gb drive with the backup), it says:
> Windows was not able to find any backup sets on F:\.
> Please select a different location.
> I searched for other posts, but didn't find one dealing with a selective
> The drive and its subfolders are all visible with Explorer, so it's
> definately there. What can I do to make it recognize it? I need those