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  1. #16
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    Wow..Hiren has pirated software, so I am surprised that you recommend it!!! While a lot is useful, their minixp is clearly illegal in the US.

    Also, no mention of reboot.pro ??? Check it out.

  2. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by sbaeder View Post
    Wow..Hiren has pirated software, so I am surprised that you recommend it!!! While a lot is useful, their minixp is clearly illegal in the US.
    Didn't XP just become abandonware?

    (The Dutch and UK governments would probably disagree for another year.)

    Bruce

  3. #18
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    Been using Hiren's CD for years (literally) when my boss introduced me to it back in 2005 (did PC repair between 2005 and 2010). It use to be all dos like applets until they added the limited XP (and afterwards Linux too) boot aka Winternals (who sold out to Microsoft; their XP boot disk was fantastic too). This disk is a must have if you need to do recovery work and such and I personally highly recommend it. As Fred said, trying to find the link is a challenge (and it's been so for years; use to be almost impossible to find the link but last few years they made it more easy to find but still you need to know what you are looking for). I think they do this to keep the novice from getting it since it's that powerful and could cause problems if used by those that think they know what they're doing but don't. I use to question even the legality of the disk since it contained som many useful and cool utilities but it's still a tool that should be in your arsenal if you are serious about repairing computers. No longer am in the PC repair business, but still do so for friends. Only a few weeks ago did I actually download 15.2 (cool to see Fred use that as his example; lol).

  4. #19
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    Interesting point that was not highlighted - Windows 8.1 doesn't offer to make optical disc recovery tools. Perhaps due to the number of discs required and the price of USB drives. Not to mention that many touch devices don't have optical drives.

    A great medium for long term storage but I wonder if this is the beginning of them becoming an external option.

  5. #20
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    I'd agree that testing recovery is a useful exercise - especially if you use old tools not designed for 64-bit environs. I can recall a study of business backup solutions that found the majority failed when properly tested. It's the last thing you want to assume on.

    It's also an important point that having a disc image alone does not allow recovery if the system won't boot. You need the software environment to allow the recovery to run. Writing a recovery disc for your imaging software may not be an obvious required step for everyone. The software may not insist.

    It's also worth noting that a Windows recovery disc may not help you for a different brand of imaging. You will need the recovery disc for that imaging tool to actually do a recovery.

  6. #21
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    When theres a new service pack, new repair discs are a good idea. Repair discs are designed to get the system running but they don't typically contain an image. If they do, it will be a default recovery image, not your current build. Usually you use a 2 tiered approach - repair to get things running and a regular system image to restore.

  7. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidFB View Post
    Interesting point that was not highlighted - Windows 8.1 doesn't offer to make optical disc recovery tools.
    It was mentioned indirectly:

    Windows 8.0 and 8.1 both include the built-in Recovery Media Creator. This tool lets you easily set up a flash drive or an external USB drive as a bootable recovery/repair disk. The Windows 8.0 version of the tool can make bootable CDs or DVDs as well.

  8. #23
    Star Lounger pseudoid's Avatar
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    As DavidFB already mentioned "Windows 8.1 no longer supports being able to create a system repair disc CD/DVD" and the check box in FredLanga article, for making a CD/DVD is now permanently disabled (grayed out). I had made a copy of Windows8Pro(32bit) SystemRepairDisc in May of 2013, which is to be used with a previously created SystemRecoveryImage/Backup that is in one of my externally connected USB HDDs. Since my system has been upgraded to Win8.1, I don't think this SystemRepairDisc will be of any use to me.
    While I was going thru some of the recovery CDs/DVDs I have accumulated over the years, it turns out that I have:
    *An older UltimateBootDiskV5.11 of 2011 vintage
    *An older Paragon HardDiskManagerPro V10 of 2012 vintage
    *An older Hiren's BootCD V15.1 of 2012 vintage
    *An older Active@ BootDisk V8 of 2013 vintage
    But these disks (and many older versions) have been mostly used to repair other people's problematic computers.
    For my own personal/family systems, I rely wholly on the Acronis TrueImage software that I have paid dearly (out the nose) for all these years.
    I have been reading WindowsSecrets active discusssions on and about File History and Recovery options but for some reason, I continue to utilize Acronis TrueImage as a proven solution that has saved my bacon too many times. Since the introduction of the 2014 version of Acronis TrueImage I have been debating whether to upgrade. In the interim, I have even tried some of the FREEware solutions like the Macrium Reflect and TRIALware Paragon imaging solutions. Yet just yesterday, I completed my Acronis TrueImage backup that I do every 3 months. It turns out that Seagate (and possibly WesternDigital???) provides a slimmed-down version of AcronisTrueImage V2013 for owners of their HDDs.

  9. #24
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    How do I know that the recovery disc will work? Can I test it and how?

  10. #25
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    Fred, when I downloaded the repair software from Ultimate Boot CD, it was loaded with spyware (over 200 hits from Malawarebytes). I have not seen an infection like that in years, and that was someone else's computer.

    Just FYI!

  11. #26
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    I made a repair disk and tried booting up from it. It did boot and located my OS on drive C:. Then it gave me a strange error message:

    Recovery disk
    Repair Windows Boot Manager
    Add startup option: Windows Recovery Environment (repaired)


    These were my only choices. I could not get to the Recovery Console or other menu without accepting the repair.

    Right now, nothing is broken. I am afraid if I let the new disk make a "repair," it may really give me a problem. What to do?


    Windows 7 Ultimate 32-bit. I had not made a repair disk before because I had installed Acronis backup, which prevented it. It was only yesterday that I found the registry edits needed after uninstalling Acronis.

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Corbett View Post
    Hi George,
    Have you tested your Ghost backup by trying to restore it? The reason I ask is because I did the same as you (i.e. used Ghost32.exe from Ghost v11) when Windows 7 came out and found that, although Ghost32.exe created the backup with no apparent problems and the backup appeared to restore OK, my Samsung R7 laptop would not boot into Windows after the restore. It's a couple of years now and I can't remember the exact error message. All I remember is that I also tried with 2 HP laptops and the results were the same... not able to boot into Windows after an apparently successful restore. I have no idea whether this was because it was Win 7 instead of XP or because it was SATA disks instead of IDE.
    I have been using Ghost for many years, through many Windows beta test programs and many crashes. It has never failed me.

    When I got a new laptop with Windows 7 32-bit Ultimate on it, I upgraded to Ghost 12 and proceeded to image my C: and D: partitions as before, to an alternating pair of USB drives.

    Last year I had a hard drive crash. I replaced the drive and then it was finger crossing time. My first restore did not boot. Uh, oh. I tried again, with some setting changed. Perfect restore of C: and D:, and it was like nothing had changed.

    I wish I had written down what the setting mistake was. I do remember it was something that seemed obvious at the time, and was probably in the basic Ghost instructions for a restore that included a boot sector.

    I have no idea about Ghost with Windows 8. That won't be an issue for me. I'm waiting for Windows 9 before I upgrade (?) or get a new machine.

  13. #28
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    I was surprised no one mentioned Bart PE. I haven't need to make one of his recovery discs for a long time.
    It appears from his website that the project is no longer being maintained. There is no discs past XP.

    I have used a Linux recovery disc, and that seemed to be a great solution. I'm sure there are others, but watch what you are downloading! See my post above!

  14. #29
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    Hi Fred

    When I attempted to run the directions you posted for Windows 8.1 I received the error message that files required to make the drive were missing. It was recommended I use the Windows 8 disk to recover my system.

    Since I had already made a USB backup some time ago, in addition to weekly images, I felt ok. I would offer the following links for viewer's who like me may need an alternate path.

    http://www.eightforums.com/tutorials...ad-create.html

    http://www.eightforums.com/installat...s-8-1-iso.html

    As always, great column.

    Regards

    Vince

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lounge Ranger View Post
    Not if you store your data on a separate physical drive, as I (and many others) do. And certainly not if your data is backed up elsewhere.
    True. I don't recall that being specified in your previous post.
    -- Bob Primak --

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