Jump to content
CCleaner Community Forums
DennisD

Disk Image Backups

Recommended Posts

Out of curiosity, how many of you guys have an "Image Backup" made with something like Macrium Reflect?

 

And how long is it since you updated it?

 

Believe me, leave it longer than a month or so, and you'll be giving yourself a lot of work with Windows Updates alone, plus all the program updates you may have made.

 

It's surprising how much your Operating System changes in a month. I found that out the hard way.

 

And how many of you guys have no System Backup at all?

 

This is how long it takes to make a backup Disk Image of a 20gb System Drive, which will save you a world of headaches and frustration if you ever suffer something serious or terminal.

 

HtqbQs.png

 

All done with free software.

 

Macrium Reflect:

 

Just thought I'd mention that.

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i've tried some of then,,btw today acronis failed to my pc...

don't know why..so i has to wipe hard drive off,make a partition[20gigs],format and reinstall....not that bad

the run safe registry services from blackviper,and disabling some services in xp..[rpceed to make n image again from paragon and acronis..just in case..

and i think sometimes hard drive needs a break,,needs a really wipe down.1 passs with kildisk.works better for my seagate HD...

all these took me like hour and a half..then update windows.

and making an image is a good idea..save time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't use any imaging software although I've been tempted to by this forum.

 

What seems to work very well for me is my old way of doing things which is to use a semi-automated handmade batch file along with 7-Zip to make my backups from drive C, it has never failed me.

 

It's only semi-automated because I have Avast automatically virus scan the backups, and have to click the analysis results screen to continue, if I didn't do that it would be completely automated however I have to know I'm making clean and safe backups.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I generally make a C drive image once a month (or whenever I remember) using a free copy of Paragon HD Manager that was given away ages ago. Although I am bad in as much as I backup the image to a partition on the same drive so if the HD died I'd be screwed (Note to self, make long overdue investment in external HD :rolleyes: )

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I generally make a C drive image once a month (or whenever I remember).

Ditto (paid-for Macrium) to a separate external drive. I'm also running a RAID mirror.

 

Data on other partitions is backed up using SyncToy to multiple external encrypted drives (one of which is kept securely away from home!).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have just done it thanks to you dennis.

 

I always use to just back up on a portable HD and my backup HD. so 2 instances

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
(Note to self, make long overdue investment in external HD :rolleyes: )

A great investment, JD. I've had one for years. And now, they are so incredibly inexpensive that you can hardly afford not to have one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Out of curiosity, how many of you guys have an "Image Backup" made with something like Macrium Reflect?

 

And how long is it since you updated it?

 

Believe me, leave it longer than a month or so, and you'll be giving yourself a lot of work with Windows Updates alone, plus all the program updates you may have made.

 

It's surprising how much your Operating System changes in a month. I found that out the hard way.

 

And how many of you guys have no System Backup at all?

 

This is how long it takes to make a backup Disk Image of a 20gb System Drive, which will save you a world of headaches and frustration if you ever suffer something serious or terminal.

 

HtqbQs.png

 

All done with free software.

 

Macrium Reflect:

 

Just thought I'd mention that.

:)

Hi Dennis,

 

I'm so glad you posted this. :)

 

I installed the free Win7 Home Premium 32 upgrade, and really wanted to have a system image in the event of disaster. However, there was an endless struggle trying to successfully run the Create System Image feature. Finally had to contact HP. The outcome of that call was that something is not 'fixable' in my system. I have to send my lappy in to have it recovered to factory original (Vista) status because even the recovery DVDs they sent me could not be run because onscreen instructions never came up when DVD was inserted. :(

 

So now that I will be back to square one, I will immediately want to get that so important system image. I've looked at several available imaging programs and Macrium Reflect looks really good to me, especially since I've seen a number problems reported with other frequently recommended programs. I've even purchased one from Worldstart, but hesitate to even try it even though they say it's glorious. Guess I've become paranoid on this subject. :lol:

 

I'm really afraid to attempt the process on DVDs again. In your opinion, would it be better to use an external hard drive? If so, I need advice regarding what kind to purchase. I just can't throw money at something that might not be right for my purpose. My C: and D: drives total 280+GB of which I presently use only about 30GB. I'm looking at an HP product described as "HP250GB Pocket Media Drive", which runs on a USB cable and costs around $80. I need to know if this item is capable of storing the system image, and if I can recover the system from it if ever needed. :unsure:

 

I trust your advice, and any recommendations you can provide are much appreciated. :) Picablu

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Picablu.

 

You'll find Macrium is really user friendly, and yes, it's a sound idea to store an image on an external drive.

 

Saying that, it's also OK to store one on a partition on the same drive as your Operating System, if you don't have an external drive. Your D: partition.

 

That has been my setup for a couple of years until I took the drive out of my sons old PC, and stuck it in my desktop PC, just to use for storage. That's where my Image is now.

 

I've never actually bought a new external hard drive Picablu, so I couldn't really recommend one, but there are plenty of guys on here who have, and plenty of guys who know a lot more than me about hardware, so I'm sure you'll get some good suggestions from the members.

 

You're wise to avoid the DVD storage idea. Even though it would probably work OK, and I did make my first back up Images on my Partition and onto 3 DVD's, I really wouldn't want to try a restore that way. Sounds a bit risky to me.

 

So hang fire for some good suggestions external drive wise, and in the meantime, providing you have the space, you could make an Image and store it on your D: partition.

 

That's better than having no back up at all, and you would be able to restore an Image from there without any problems if your C: (System) drive went down.

 

I restored twice from my D: partition with no problems.

 

Also have a read of this topic if you missed it, as it's about Image Backups, with some pics of the Macrium Rescue CD Restore process.

 

http://forum.piriform.com/index.php?showtopic=25993

 

Post anything else you're not sure about Picablu, and we'll do our best to sort you out.

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lots of good external HDs out there now, I'm sure. However, I'm using a Western Digital "MyBook Essential" and have had no problems at all. The only issue I've ever had is that once in a while, there's a slight delay (seconds) in accessing that drive. Not sure why that is, but it does happen from time to time -- but not always :).

 

I'm also a Macrium Reflect user and store my image on the WD drive. This seems to work well for me. And like Dennis, I try to create a new backup image every month.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm using a little LaCie external I got in a sale at Staples months ago.

 

Had no problem with it at all so far.

 

Some external drives come with software on them to 'help' you with your backups. I prefer not to use it and just copy things manually through windows or the program. I also still use Karen's Replicator to make backups of music, pictures and setups etc. It's just another safety net :)

 

Always remember to use the 'safely remove hardware' procedure so as to cut down the risk of corrupting your data when you remove the external drive

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hazelnut a good question to pose these days with all the weird things out there that can take a system down, apart from the user making a MAJOR mistake, as I did many years ago. So since then I have gone "overboard".

 

As previously stated I use "Allway Sync" to a 500gig USB HD for Data, I also use "Lacie Backup" for drive "C" (SW came free when I purchased an expensive Canon Laser printer / scanner / copier / fax machine. It also shipped with a Rebate for a SATA 500gig HD).

 

Now come the most important part, my PC is equipped with 11 bays, 5 for Hard drives + others, so I run 5 SATA HD's plus the USB 500gig HD, some 1.7TB of storage. So when I back up my System drive "C" with "Lacie" it backs up to a "separate" physical HD. For the last 6 years my standard build for me and my after hours clients always includes a min. of 2 physical HD's. If not, I do not build the box.

 

For my 5 PC's on my network I uses all Gigabyte motherboards as they all ship with (well the ones I purchased) "Xpress Recovery2" software which is a utility that allows you to quickly compress and backup you system data and perform restoration of it. Supports NTFS, FAT32 & FAT16 file systems, Xpress Recover2 can backup data on PATA and SATA hard drives and restore it.

 

Xpress Recovery2 can only backup and restore the first physical hard drive that has the operating system installed. You boot from the Gigabyte CD that comes with the MB to run the Xpress Recovery2 system to backup and restore. By the way it takes longer to backup than restore.

 

Not supported (no issue for me) OS requirements are Win XP SP1 or later, USB hard drives (can not store the backup image on them) Hard drives in RAID/AHCI mode.

 

I also like you create a new backup every month like clockwork only because I created a MAJOR mistake many years ago and the heartache and time it took to rebuild and restore my data from "hard copy" I do not wish to repeat the exercise.

 

I really need to get a life as I also use Ghost and create an backup image (every 6 months) which is stored on another HD, a different PC across my LAN. Data only backups are made weekly, data Allway Sync is performed every time I shut down, this is done automatically.

 

Sorry to be so long winded about the subject, BUT backups are so important, and if one does backup, one should do it regularly (at least monthly) as you suggest Hazelnut.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Picablu,

 

I've had three external hard drives over the past 5 years or so. Two I like and am using. The third was a junker.

The two I like: Western Digital My Book and Iomega Prestige, both 500 gb. I disliked that the My Book came preloaded with backup software and that it has no on/off switch. I reformatted that drive to get rid of the preloaded software and it's been a reliable workhorse. I just purchased the Iomega a month or so ago. Unlike the My Book, it did not come preloaded with backup software and it has an on/off switch. It's too soon for me to vouch for it's reliability, but up till now I've had no trouble with it and it gets good reviews on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001D7REI...x_ya_oh_product

 

The external drive I had problems with was a Simpletech Simpledrive. It could be that I just got a random lemon, but I doubt that I'll buy another one from them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tasgandy, with that many bays to play with have you considered running a RAID mirror?

 

Marmite, no I have not, perhaps because I do not know much about setting up a Mirror drive. However your suggestion makes sense so I shall commence research. Do you have any suggestions? and thanks for your reply.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have to say I haven't any experience of creating one from scratch. I have a Dell desktop that I ordered with two drives configured as a RAID 1 mirror. It uses Intel RAID software to manage this. I've played around with 'breaking' and rebuilding the mirror but not actually configuring the drivers or software.

 

From the little I've just read, it seems as though it is easier to do it from blank disks, rather than convert a set of disks that already have a system on data into a RAID array (be it RAID 1 or any other flavour).

 

A RAID array can of course offer you built in resilience and redundancy. But since you aren't starting from scratch it may well be something that you'd have to be keen on doing as a project ... making sure you have all of your back-ups in place first ;)

 

But since you already seem to have a disciplined back-up regime in place and running, the effort involved in creating a RAID array may not be worthwhile.

 

I've seen a few posts on here from people with RAID configurations ... you may yet get some better-informed advice :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have to say I haven't any experience of creating one from scratch. I have a Dell desktop that I ordered with two drives configured as a RAID 1 mirror. It uses Intel RAID software to manage this. I've played around with 'breaking' and rebuilding the mirror but not actually configuring the drivers or software.

 

From the little I've just read, it seems as though it is easier to do it from blank disks, rather than convert a set of disks that already have a system on data into a RAID array (be it RAID 1 or any other flavour).

 

A RAID array can of course offer you built in resilience and redundancy. But since you aren't starting from scratch it may well be something that you'd have to be keen on doing as a project ... making sure you have all of your back-ups in place first ;)

 

But since you already seem to have a disciplined back-up regime in place and running, the effort involved in creating a RAID array may not be worthwhile.

 

I've seen a few posts on here from people with RAID configurations ... you may yet get some better-informed advice :)

 

Thanks for the info and from what I have now read since your sensible suggestion it looks like RAID5 is what I need with perhaps 3 HD's. So I shall now take this on in a test environment first. RAID5 will give me all of the RAID benefits, security and speed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the info and from what I have now read since your sensible suggestion it looks like RAID5 is what I need with perhaps 3 HD's. So I shall now take this on in a test environment first. RAID5 will give me all of the RAID benefits, security and speed.

Enjoy! :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Picablu,

 

I've had three external hard drives over the past 5 years or so. Two I like and am using. The third was a junker.

The two I like: Western Digital My Book and Iomega Prestige, both 500 gb. I disliked that the My Book came preloaded with backup software and that it has no on/off switch. I reformatted that drive to get rid of the preloaded software and it's been a reliable workhorse. I just purchased the Iomega a month or so ago. Unlike the My Book, it did not come preloaded with backup software and it has an on/off switch. It's too soon for me to vouch for it's reliability, but up till now I've had no trouble with it and it gets good reviews on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001D7REI...x_ya_oh_product

 

The external drive I had problems with was a Simpletech Simpledrive. It could be that I just got a random lemon, but I doubt that I'll buy another one from them.

Hi cc1,

 

Thank you for the input.

 

I've checked info on a few external hard drives and narrowed down my possible choices.

May I ask why you prefer not to use the SmartWare that comes on the WD My Book? As they describe it, it seems like it would be easy for an inexperienced user such as myself. Also what is the advantage of an on/off switch? Don't you just disconnect the unit when backup is complete? Sorry about being so ignorant. :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm using a little LaCie external I got in a sale at Staples months ago.

 

Had no problem with it at all so far.

 

Some external drives come with software on them to 'help' you with your backups. I prefer not to use it and just copy things manually through windows or the program. I also still use Karen's Replicator to make backups of music, pictures and setups etc. It's just another safety net :)

 

Always remember to use the 'safely remove hardware' procedure so as to cut down the risk of corrupting your data when you remove the external drive

Hi hazelnut,

 

Thank you for your response.

 

I would be interested in knowing why you prefer not using included software? Is it becuase you have other software you prefer?

 

Several members highly recommend Macrium Reflect. If I wanted to use that instead, would I simply not install the included software? :unsure:

 

Please tell me about the 'safely remove hardware procedure'. I'm only familiar with a notification that comes up sometimes that it's OK to remove.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Out of curiosity, how many of you guys have an "Image Backup" made with something like Macrium Reflect?

 

And how long is it since you updated it?

 

Believe me, leave it longer than a month or so, and you'll be giving yourself a lot of work with Windows Updates alone, plus all the program updates you may have made.

 

It's surprising how much your Operating System changes in a month. I found that out the hard way.

 

And how many of you guys have no System Backup at all?

 

This is how long it takes to make a backup Disk Image of a 20gb System Drive, which will save you a world of headaches and frustration if you ever suffer something serious or terminal.

 

HtqbQs.png

 

All done with free software.

 

Macrium Reflect[/url

 

Just thought I'd mention that.

:)

Hi everybody,

 

I'm back! Thanks for all the info you've provided about external HDs and backup software. :)

 

Have been doing external HD comparison shopping after reading what many members posted. Will probably go with the WD MyBook Essential. The Smartware included appears to back up both system and personal files, and looks easy for a non-techie like me to use.

 

Since Macrium Reflect is so welll recommended by many members, I would really like to know if/why it is better than SmartWare. Do I understand correctly that it would be necessary to use the paid version of Macrium Reflect if you want to use it for both system and personal files backup.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
May I ask why you prefer not to use the SmartWare that comes on the WD My Book?
I already have backup software.

 

Also what is the advantage of an on/off switch?
It's just a personal preference thing for me. The WD is usb-powered and lots of people are happy with that too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Do I understand correctly that it would be necessary to use the paid version of Macrium Reflect if you want to use it for both system and personal files backup.

I have the commercial version, and I do believe that is correct.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Remember Picablu, you are actually backing up your personal files located on your System Drive (usually C:) with a Macrium Image backup made with the free version.

 

We have two very similar threads active at the moment and you may want to read the other in it's entirety, but the post linked to here explains how to mount your backup Image as a drive, which enables you to access all the files stored within the Image.

 

http://forum.piriform.com/index.php?showto...st&p=157865

 

And you can use Karens Replicator to make separate backups of all your personal stuff, which means you will have two backups of the stuff you least want to lose.

 

Karens Replicator can be set up to copy your personal files automatically from where you store them, to a chosen folder or folders on another partition or drive.

 

You can set it to only copy new additions from the source folder/folders to the backup locations, meaning you won't be duplicating files in your backup folders.

 

I use it to scan my photographs and music folders at regular intervals, and copy only new additions to those folders to the backup.

 

These are only suggestions of course. The choices are entirely yours. But keep coming with the questions if you are still unclear about anything.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...