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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    win7 image restore and user data backup

    I have my computer using Win7 backup tools. I have made an Image of my hard drive and am doing weekly userdata backups to my network. If/when my HDD fails, what do I do? My understanding is that I would install a new HDD, boot from the restore disk and restore the image to the new HDD. Then I would boot to the new drive with the restored image and run the backup/restore program and restore the userdata backup to bring the new install up to date with the weekly userdata backup? Is this correct?I have read Fred Langa's instructions but remain unclear as to the exact mechanism of bringing the Image up to date using the userdata backups.

    Thanks for the help.
    Last edited by Just Plain Fred; 2012-01-26 at 18:12.

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    It depends on where you store your Images. It is never a good idea to store the image on the HD for this very reason. If the HD fails, there goes your Images as well.

    I am not sure the Win 7 Backup and Restore app is capable of restoring your Image to a new HD. I do know the 3rd party apps can accomplish this. You would simply insert the Boot media, connect your Image media (I store my Images on an Ext USB HD), boot to the boot media and follow the instructions. I use Acronis (not free) and it takes less than 10 minutes to restore my Imagae file.

    It is also a good practice to recreate new Images regularly. After all, you PC changes with updates, new apps, etc. If your image is way out of date, it will still take quite a while to restore all the changes after you restore the OS.

    Note: It is not a good idea to display your email address. This is just asking for problems from spammers.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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  3. #3
    3 Star Lounger
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    Question 1: Are your weekly userdata backups also image backups or file backups?
    Question 2: How often are you making new image backups?

    A disk image backup is basically a snapshot of the entire disk in the state it was in when you made the backup. It includes Win7, all installed programs, and all data store on the disk.

    If the answer to Q1 is file backups, restoring the image backup will bring your system back to the state it was in when you made the backup. Restoring the userdata backups would only bring those files up to date - it would not update Windows and probably not update applications. It would not restore any new applications installed after the image backup was done.

    I do ocasional image backups but do data backups at least once a week. I can always reinstall Windows and my applications but there is no practical way to restore the data without a backup.

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    #1 - no, just drag and drop data to backup folder. I also use a separate data partition for my data. This way if your OS is fudged, you can just restore the OS partition. If your data is already compressed, like some music files or pictures, the compression associated with Imaging may affect them.

    #2 - At least every couple of weeks, or when changes take place. For example after I add a new app. Once I have checked the app to ensure I wish to keep it, new image. Remember if that new app screws up your OS, you already have an Up To Date Images from after the last change. You can restore to that Image.

    Usually I keep Images until I have about 6 new Images, then I start throwing out (deleting) the oldest Images.

    My HD is set as follows:
    C Drive - Win 7 with all apps and customizations and updates
    D Drive - Data drive with just data (duh)
    W Drive - Win 8 DP and all apps and customizations

    When I create an Image I include both C, D and W. Since I am backing up my data seperately, I can restore this easily on a new HD after I restore the 3 partitions. I would simply restore the Win 7 OS (with all apps and customizations), then create my 3 partitions, then restore my data and restore Win 8 DP.

    With one partition, you can still do the Image and restore the Image, then simply move your up to date data backups back to the proper locations that hold the out of date data you already pointed out.

    I hope this is understandable!
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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  5. #5
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    I think the answer to the original question was "Yes":

    Restore your computer from a system image backup

    Bruce

  6. #6
    New Lounger
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    Thank you

    Thanks Ted, Nate, and Bruce. I am going to need more disk space to do regular images. I hope prices come down again soon.
    RWC

  7. #7
    Gold Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by cranerw3156 View Post
    I am going to need more disk space to do regular images. I hope prices come down again soon.
    RWC,
    Hello.... One more thing ..There are other backup programs that use more compression (and adjustable) than the "Windows Backup" program ( free too ) So you could store more images than the Windows one. Also have many more advantages ( tools) over the (my opinion) anemic and clumsy \ clunky "Windows" program. Post back if you want more "info" Regards Fred
    PlainFred

    None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free (J. W. Von Goethe)

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