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  1. #1
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    I use Win7 Home Premium, 64bit. I used 'create a system image' on the backup/restore control panel a few weeks ago, to write an image to an external drive (I:\). Today, I did it again. But, afterward, I see that the latest image is the only one I have. The documentation in Win7 says it won't delete the old ones until I get short on space. I have about 590G free, so that's not why it deleted the old image.

    Further reading in the docs, I find that it won't save but one image IF you are using a "Network" drive. Well, I'm connected directly to my ISP by cable modem (no router) so the recommendation when I first set up was to use the "Public Network" type. Other than that designation, I have NO network, whatsoever. Is that what Win7 backup is looking at, and using to determine if I am using a "network" drive? If not, why would it not keep more than one image backup? Thanks.

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    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Is the Ext drive connected directly to the PC via USB or eSata? If so, then the Network info does not apply. This would only apply if the Ext drive was connected through the modem or used as a network storage unit.

    I would suspect that this may be a limitation of the Win7 back up feature. I had a similar problem with my wife's Win 7 HP, whereas my Win 7 Ultimate showed no such limitation. I found the Win 7 back up somewhat slow and as such moved to a 3rd party app. I chose Acronis True Image Home 2010. This works well for all versions of Win 7.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
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  3. #3
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    The ext drive is connected directly to the PC via a USB on the back of the PC.

    I read something yesterday where it was mentioned that the backup works differently amongst the various versions of Win7, but never saw anything like that mentioned in the Win7 Help, or other documentation. Guess I'll have to do some more searching. One copy should be enough, and if it's not, I have an old one on DVDs, if it comes to that. I don't think it's worth buying some other program, in my case.

    Thanks for the reply.

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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I use Win7 Home Premium, 64bit. I used 'create a system image' on the backup/restore control panel a few weeks ago, to write an image to an external drive (I:\). Today, I did it again. But, afterward, I see that the latest image is the only one I have. The documentation in Win7 says it won't delete the old ones until I get short on space. I have about 590G free, so that's not why it deleted the old image
    The built-in Windows back up will do multiple images but unfortunately you will only see this as you are
    about to restore an image. It will give you choices based on date. (timestamp)
    The images when viewed from explorer will only show 2 large files; WindowsImageBackup & CLINT-PC.(my setup)

    I have 3 backups based on windows 7 64 bit, backed up to another internal drive.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

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  5. #5
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Do a restore to verify this. You don't actually have to do the actual restore, just verify the timestamps and then cancel the operation.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  6. #6
    2 Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by CLiNT View Post
    The built-in Windows back up will do multiple images but unfortunately you will only see this as you are
    about to restore an image. It will give you choices based on date. (timestamp)
    The images when viewed from explorer will only show 2 large files; WindowsImageBackup & CLINT-PC.(my setup)

    I have 3 backups based on windows 7 64 bit, backed up to another internal drive.
    Well, that is what I thought, too. So, I went to those screens, and I still think there is only one, based on what I saw there, and the fact that the size of the space used on my I: drive is not enough to hold two images. I use about 50G on my main drive, and I think it takes about 29 or 30G to image it. [s]Can someone tell me how to get the image backup(s) to show on the screen, via the restore process. All I can get to show up are the nightly file backups, of which I have several, but no image files show. [/s] (see next post.) I really don't want to boot up with the rescue disk, just to see that, though.

    I do nightly backups (w/o an image) and I do see different versions, by date, of those backups. I don't want to do an image every night, but the backup setup won't allow me to schedule it so that nightly file backups, and say weekly, or monthly disk images are done automatically.

    The only thing I can see that shows I did a backup on 1/13/2010 prior to this last one is a file in WindowsImageBackup/WaynesPC/SPPMetadataCache with that date.

    Thanks for the reply, Clint. I wonder if your 'internal' vs. my 'external' drive makes a difference???

  7. #7
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    OK, I found the answer. As usual, I didn't read the help screens thoroughly! Apparently, if the backup image is done via the scheduler, it might keep the old copy, but if you create it via the "Create System Image" link on the Restore page, then it writes over the old one, if any. Following is the quote from the help page:

    "Keeping different versions of system images
    If you're saving your system images on an internal or external drive, or on CDs or DVDs, you can keep several versions of system images. On internal and external hard drives, older system images will be deleted when the drive runs out of space. To help conserve disk space, you can manually delete older system images. For more information, see What backup settings should I use to maximize my disk space?

    If you're saving your system images in a network location, you can only keep the most current system image for each computer. System images are saved in the format of drive\WindowsImageBackup\computer name\. If you have an existing system image for a computer and are creating a new one for the same computer, the new system image will overwrite the existing one. If you want to keep the existing system image, you can copy it to a different location before creating the new system image by following these steps:

    Navigate to the location of the system image.

    Copy the WindowsImageBackup folder to a new location."

    Bolding is mine. Apparently, the first bolded text applies to backup images done as part of a scheduled backup (like Clint's). The second applies to the manually done ones, like mine.

    I'm so glad that's all cleared up, now...well, maybe I spoke too soon...If I copy the folder to a new name, will it show up when I need to use it? BTW, that strike-thru on the previous post is because I read another help screen to see that I should use the "Recovery" screen to use an image, instead of the "Restore" screen to use my nightly file backups. I'll bet that the Recovery screen will still just show me the latest image date, since my older copy will be in a place it won't look for it....I'll try it...

    EDIT: OK, I think that Help could be better worded; instead of 'copying' that folder to another location (which would take 30 minutes or more), I just renamed that folder. Then, I did another image, and it created that same folder again with the new image in the same-named subfolders, etc.. The Recovery screen still just shows me the date of the latest image. I'm not sure what would happen after a restart; I didn't want to go that far. But, I'm satisfied, for now!

    EDIT: I really meant to say "after a restore", not a restart in the last paragraph!

  8. #8
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I am not sure the renamed image will show up in the restore screen. I think Win 7 Backup/Restore is looking for a particular file name in a partucularly names folder. I believe this might might be one of the limitations with the Win 7 Backup/Restore. I attempted to use Win 7 for 3 diff. Laptops to the same Ext Drive and set the folder to identify which PC the laptop was for, but when I looked for the image while testing the restore it could not be found by windows. Using a 3rd party backup (I use Acronis True Image Home 2010) I can rename the backup to a name I want. This allows multiple images for the same PC while saving all images. Then when I test the restore, all images are shown so I can pick the image I want.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Myers View Post
    I am not sure the renamed image will show up in the restore screen. I think Win 7 Backup/Restore is looking for a particular file name in a partucularly names folder. I believe this might might be one of the limitations with the Win 7 Backup/Restore. I attempted to use Win 7 for 3 diff. Laptops to the same Ext Drive and set the folder to identify which PC the laptop was for, but when I looked for the image while testing the restore it could not be found by windows. Using a 3rd party backup (I use Acronis True Image Home 2010) I can rename the backup to a name I want. This allows multiple images for the same PC while saving all images. Then when I test the restore, all images are shown so I can pick the image I want.
    I'm pretty sure you are correct - it wouldn't show up. What I have to do is make sure the correct top level folder name is named WindowsImageBackup, and the one I don't want to use is named -old or something else. All the subfolders are named the same, and I can see the date I created each, so all I have to do is remember all of this when/if I need it.

  10. #10
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    If you're anything like me the remembering is becomming the hard part. With my gray , my mind seems to get worse every passing day. Good luck with the imaging.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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