Windows 7 System Image Backup-Restore

larrytucaz

Senior member
Dec 22, 2004
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I have a recently-acquired new computer, have Windows 7 installed. I was wanting some assistance on doing a system image backup, and restore--was told to post here.

I did find this link which explains how to create the image, however, it does not seem to explain how to install it (or "restore") it. Also, I have heard of people saying that they commonly create the image on an external hard drive, but it would seem to me to make more sense to create it on multiple DVDs you can boot to.

So my question is--assuming the image is created, how do you "install" it as it were? Isn't there some "boot" disc you would go to--after all, I'm assuming you could use this to restore a PC which has been wiped clean. Also, why is it recommended to have the files created on a separate hard drive vs multiple DVDs?
 
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RebateMonger

Elite Member
Dec 24, 2005
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Windows 7 System Images are generally restored by booting to a Windows 7 Install DVD and choosing the "Repair Your Computer" option. Underneath that, you'll find an option to locate a System Image and to restore it to where you want it.

If you are creating system images, making backups to DVDs is a lot of work and it's less likely that users will make the needed backups. Also, DVDs are not nearly as reliable as a hard disk when doing a system restoration.
 
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larrytucaz

Senior member
Dec 22, 2004
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(RebateMonger) I do thank you for your help, I will check that out.

(GeorgeMichael) Why are you spamming in here? What's that about? How rude. Did I ask for a commercial with my question?

LRH
 
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Blain

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
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Sorry you didn't think my link was helpful.
Many of the search result take you through step by step on exactly how to restore a Windows 7 image.
 

larrytucaz

Senior member
Dec 22, 2004
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Sorry you didn't think my link was helpful.
Many of the search result take you through step by step on exactly how to restore a Windows 7 image.

Oh okay. Well my apologies if you actually were trying to be helpful. You do have to understand--I have a lot of negative experiences in other forums where it was common occurrence for people to say "have you ever heard of searching" or what have you--without helping any. This was NOT for questions such as "what is Windows" or "how do I clear my throat before speaking into the microphone when voice recording" or whatever, either. I always thought that was totally wrong and not at all in the spirit of helpfulness. It certainly wasn't a case of enlightening lazy loafs to quit being so lazy or that sort of thing.

I thought you were doing the same thing, as opposed to actually being helpful. If I was wrong, my apologies.

LRH
 

larrytucaz

Senior member
Dec 22, 2004
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Here is a list of tutorials on back up and restore. You should find what you need in here somewhere. http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/?filter[2]=Backup%20Restore

I do thank you much, I THINK I got it now. Basically as I understand it, there is no need for me to wipe my hard drive out and format it, delete partitions etc, just go to Windows system restore etc, and have it restore the image--and voila, clean and fresh.

All that said, I think my earlier system restore may be pointless and I may need to make another one. This is because the 1st backup easily burned the image in barely 2-5 minutes, and when I did it again to DVD it only took one disc. I have since learned why--I let Automatic Updates do its thing, nearly an hour later and it's only about 13% through downloading it! Wow, what a huge process, and I can only imagine how much larger the image will be after it's all done.

LRH
 

corkyg

Elite Member | Peripherals
Super Moderator
Mar 4, 2000
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Well, here's a totally different concept. I have Windows 7 installed on Drive 1, in a SATA mobile rack. I have a second drive below it that is the exact clone of Drive 1. I call it a reserve drive or "spare tire."

I create the "spare tire" by cloning Drive 1 to it. That creates d duplicate drive that is ready to go - no restoration needed. Just turn off Drive 1 and turn on Drive 2.

http://pics.bbzzdd.com/users/Corky-G/EZ-Swap3.jpg

I also have another rack tray with Vista. I call it "planned redundancy" and it is yet another way to backup a complete system.

The cloning process takes about 12 minutes using Acronis TrueImage 2010's bootable Rescue Media. I clone the drive about once a week.

All data is stored on an external eSATA drive.
 
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larrytucaz

Senior member
Dec 22, 2004
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(corkyg) Thanks for the tips. I will make reference to this thread for future reference if need be. By the way, guess where I lived from 1996-2006--yes, that's right--Tucson, Arizona. (Hence the tucaz part of my username).

By the way I did find this link as yet another reference, and it has articles both on creating AND restoring a system image. In my case, although I did create an image on my external hard drive and DVD, the DVD boot-method worked best (that is, create the files on the DVD and create a system boot disc and use those). It only required 1 DVD for the system image--a surprise to me.

I was relieved it worked--I tried it today, and it reverted to it just as I wanted. (I did not have it format-repartition the hard drive.) That system image is basically "clean" as the computer came to me (other than some options like autocomplete etc turned on in Internet Explorer, as I had browsed with it a little bit prior to this). The idea was to preserve the computer in its original out-of-box state so I could "roll back" to that if necessary.

Since I created it, some applications I had installed & removed and wasn't pleased at the "left behind" program files etc, and wanted to "start clean" again--with Windows 7 and the included Office 2007 Professional activated-working etc. It did just that. Hot dog.

As I'm speaking I am backing up another different image with just a few applications installed--Firefox and a few XP-era applications (Powerdesk 4 file manager, Aranchnophilia HTML editor, Web Album Generator among them) installed. I also have the taskbar and desktop options set as I want (small icons, keep quick-launch icons as "segregated" as possible, show all system tray icons).

Thanks for all the help-tips etc. Looks like I'm off & running now.
 
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