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  1. #16
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    I can't be bothered to make frequent system images. I make 2 or 3 that contain the bulk of the installed software that I care about with the computer in pristine condition. If I have to do a restore, I just live with the updates. At least I don't have to track down the software disks and codes. I am much more compulsive about my user files - automatic synchronization between 2 computers every day, with another synchronization of all user files for family members to a second HDD, and occasional backups of all user files (and the drive images) to an external drive that I don't otherwise keep plugged in, in case of a power surge. In fact, I used to make lots of drive images, but then realized the main reason I was restoring old images was that my computer was slowing down, and decided that for the most part I don't need my most recently updated C: drive.

  2. #17
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrburns47 View Post
    Thanks. I just checked out your site & did a a fast run through your blog. Looks like we're on the same page except I was in USN 66-70 in DC & the Pacific and in optics. I'll check out the tech stuff on your site in the late evening sometime.

    I followed your link for the tech lic. & have sent terabyte an email explaining my needs and requesting guidance & a quote. Do you work for them or are just a satisfied user?
    No, I don't work for TeraByte, but I've been a satisfied user for more than a dozen years.
    Create a new drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "Let them that don't want it have memories of not gettin' any." "Gratitude is riches and complaint is poverty and the worst I ever had was wonderful." Brother Dave Gardner "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else." Sir Thomas Robert Deware. "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?" Captain Jack Sparrow.
    Unleash Windows

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  4. #18
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by starvinmarvin View Post
    bbearren - you said: "I highly recommend (as do many others here) developing a drive imaging regimen and using it with regularity. It is well worth the effort."

    So, if it works so well how come that owl ain't smilin'?

    Regards
    It took all my persuasion just to get him to pose for the photo. He said, "I am smiling."
    Create a new drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "Let them that don't want it have memories of not gettin' any." "Gratitude is riches and complaint is poverty and the worst I ever had was wonderful." Brother Dave Gardner "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else." Sir Thomas Robert Deware. "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?" Captain Jack Sparrow.
    Unleash Windows

  5. #19
    Lounge VIP bobprimak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JNygren View Post
    Clonezilla has saved my butt on several occasions! The UI is not for the faint-of-heart, but it gets the job done.
    CloneZilla Live is well suited for Linux backup and recovery.

    For Windows, I prefer Macrium Reflect. I do my Windows backups from within Windows. For Linux, I am not aware of software which can accomplish this.

    So for Linux I have little choice. CloneZilla Live, even with its text driven interface and its arcane drive naming, is one of the few effective options.

    But for Windows, such arcana is completely unnecessary and unproductive. Macrium Reflect's user interface is much easier to use and less user-error prone.
    -- Bob Primak --

  6. #20
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    I'll catch a couple of these in one post. I put the OP in the Maintenance Forum because it applies to all Windows versions as well as other OS's. Regardless of which OS you're running, restoring a known-good drive image is always faster and simpler than repair/reinstall or a reformat/reinstall.

    I use Task Scheduler to run Window's built-in Cleanmrg.exe with the sagerun switch to get rid of run-of-the-mill temp files on a daily basis. I do that because I also use Task Scheduler to run a MyDefrag daily defrag script that covers my system logical drives (I also run monthly scripts for both system and data logical drives) and I don't see much point in defragging temporary files. And I do these things so that I can create a new lean and defragged drive image whenever I want without a lot of extra fuss.

    About every third or fourth drive image set, I run sfc /scannow first. I do this to insure that I have a "known-good" logical drive when I make a drive image. I recently had one of those sfc runs turn up bad, corrupt files that couldn't be repaired. I had to go back about 4 images to find one that ran a good sfc /scannow. I covered that in this post. I also run chkdsk /r from time to time for similar reasons.

    Quote Originally Posted by CLiNT View Post
    Six minutes is about the best I've heard of in terms of a image restore.
    I couldn't agree more about taking the time to learn how to make and restore your own images.
    Nothing beats a well thought out backup regimen.
    My OS restore is quick mainly because that logical drive contains only the OS; no Program Files, no Users, no ProgramData. In the case outlined in the OP, I knew that the damage was in the registry, because I was the culprit, so I also knew that I only needed to restore the OS logical drive image. The Users System Folder and ProgramData are on a separate HDD and logical drive. The Program Files System Folder is on another logical drive. I didn't need to restore either of those drive images because the damage was confined to Windows only.

    Quote Originally Posted by alan.b View Post
    That is so wrong
    I always image immediately BEFORE I permit a Patch Tuesday, and especially before emergency patches.
    No, it's not wrong, it's just not the way you do it. It works fine for Ted. He has his data separated, his system doesn't change much, and a month-old drive image restore just puts him back to before Patch Tuesday, for all practical purposes. We all have our own reasons for doing the things we do.

    I make drive images more frequently, so in the event of a MS Update fubar, I'm not far away from being current with my last image. I also have my data completely separate, so that doesn't enter the equation. The main thing is to have a system that works for you, and to make regular use of it. That's the point I'm trying to promote with the OP.

    As alan.b and Comedian both discussed, keeping data separate minimizes risk and increases survival opportunities. But all in all, for me it comes down to having a regimen with which one is comfortable, because that increases the likelihood of making regular use of it, and that is the real key - making it a practice and routine.

    One of the main reasons I dual boot Windows 7 and 8 is that I can work on either OS from the other, and also keep my desktop available at the same time, like while I'm making drive images, or running chkdsk on one of the partitions used by the other OS. It just makes it that much easier for me to keep my system clean, lean, quick, reliable and recoverable, as well as keeping it available.
    Last edited by bbearren; 2013-10-05 at 00:02.
    Create a new drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "Let them that don't want it have memories of not gettin' any." "Gratitude is riches and complaint is poverty and the worst I ever had was wonderful." Brother Dave Gardner "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else." Sir Thomas Robert Deware. "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?" Captain Jack Sparrow.
    Unleash Windows

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  8. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by alan.b View Post
    I always image immediately BEFORE I permit a Patch Tuesday, and especially before emergency patches.
    Agreed! I got in the habit of doing that in back in XP, since Windows Updates (even selectively applied) hosed the system on more than one occasion.

  9. #22
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    I do mine right after I apply patch Tuesday patches. In this way if something else crashes me sometime after the patches, I can get right back to work. If the patches themselves crash me I restore the previous month's Image that I created right after the last patch Tuesday.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


    Complete PC Specs: By Speccy

  10. #23
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    To address the issue of the timing of creating a drive image as part of your backup regimen, the truly relevant issue is summed up in just two words: frequently (no less frequently than once a month, IMO) and regularly (don't skip creating an image, especially if your frequency is monthly).

    Without emphasis on those two, you're lessening your chances of relatively painless recovery from things that go bump in Windows.
    Create a new drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "Let them that don't want it have memories of not gettin' any." "Gratitude is riches and complaint is poverty and the worst I ever had was wonderful." Brother Dave Gardner "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else." Sir Thomas Robert Deware. "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?" Captain Jack Sparrow.
    Unleash Windows

  11. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bd1235 View Post
    You have to take photos with both side panels removed. We all know that.
    Don't forget to put the film in the camera as well!

  12. #25
    Bronze Lounger DrWho's Avatar
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    I've always told my customers, whether a home PC user, bank or Corp. office, "the thing that controls how often you do a backup, depends on how much data you're willing to loose when your HD crashes." Eh?

    If you never do anything on your PC but read email and play solitaire, then a monthly backup would probably be just fine, to save your monthly updates, etc.

    But, if you're like me, or the bank trust Department, that won't cut it!!!
    I back up all my data files daily and my entire C drive weekly. (not, weakly)

    Daily, I use a batch file with XCOPY, to back up any file that's new or has been changed, since the last backup.
    Those backups go to two external drives....a 32 gig, USB 3.0 Flash Drive and a 1TB, USB 3.0 External Hard drive. So, since these are 'incremental' updates, they take only a few seconds. If one of those external drives should fail, I still have the other one. Then I also have my Weekly backup of the entire C drive.

    My favorite thing I tell my customers, is: "The only bad backup, is the one that you decided NOT to make".

    Good luck, Y'all !
    The Doctor
    Experience is truly the best teacher.

    Backup! Backup! Backup! GHOST Rocks!

  13. #26
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    In my experience (Image for Dos, Image for Windows & Easus Backup) an image is vital, as long as you don't really, really need it. I have made images, and tested them by restoring right away, no problem. However, when the chips have been spilled all over the floor the restore failed miserably with both Image for DOS & Windows, so I switched to Easus. I just had a major problem restoring Win 7 on an HP Mini, using brand new recovery disks from HP. How could that go wrong? It did. Was I worried? Well yes I was. Before starting I'd made a system image, and a file backup too, using Easus. I was covered, right? Well I thought so, but when I tried to restore just a couple of hours later using Easus I got, "The layout of the original disk does not match the target disk. Please recover to an empty disk and perform recovery to recover system." I tried an image made a month ago, same result.

    I don't know what the "layout" means, it's the same disk, same NTFS file system. Easus haven't answered my querry yet. HP doesn't do e-mail for out of warranty products, however, if I'm prepared to spend half a day on the phone to Bangalore I'll get to speak to a techie in Indlish. HP Forums seemed like a good place to start, 24 hours later there has been just one, irrelevant response. Right now the HP is a paper-weight.

    But I wouldn't want to put anyone off imaging, it does give you a warm, fuzzy feeling, until it doesn't.

    David
    Last edited by Rhinoceros; 2013-10-20 at 16:15.

  14. #27
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    Probably the HP recovery attempt changed your disk. Did you check what partitions you have now and compare with what you had before?
    Rui
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    R4

  15. #28
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    The "layout" usually refers to the main partition on your hard drive not being the same size as it was when you created the backup image. So, if you created the backup image on, say a 500GB partition and you're trying to "restore" that image to a smaller partition (say, 450GB) then you would get that error message.

    Here's an example that happened to me once a few years ago. My laptop had Windows 7 on a 500GB hard (labeled as my C: drive, as usual). I created a backup image. Later, i used Windows built-in disk management to shrink that 500GB partiton and create a second partition to hold photos and videos separately just in case something went wrong with Windows.

    Months later, i decided to "restore" the backup image and, guess what, it didn't work because my hard drive "layout" had changed. This is offered as one example of what might go wrong when trying to restore from a backup.

  16. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by starvinmarvin View Post
    The "layout" usually refers to the main partition on your hard drive not being the same size as it was when you created the backup image. So, if you created the backup image on, say a 500GB partition and you're trying to "restore" that image to a smaller partition (say, 450GB) then you would get that error message.

    Here's an example that happened to me once a few years ago. My laptop had Windows 7 on a 500GB hard (labeled as my C: drive, as usual). I created a backup image. Later, i used Windows built-in disk management to shrink that 500GB partiton and create a second partition to hold photos and videos separately just in case something went wrong with Windows.

    Months later, i decided to "restore" the backup image and, guess what, it didn't work because my hard drive "layout" had changed. This is offered as one example of what might go wrong when trying to restore from a backup.
    These recent imaging apps usually handle image restoration to a different sized disk or partition without any issues. I don't know EaseUS, but Acronis does it without any problems whatsoever.
    Rui
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    R4

  17. #30
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    Mmm ... like i said, it was just one example of what might go wrong ......

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