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Making backups

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by crjdriver, May 15, 2009.

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  1. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator Thread Starter

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    Many of you who post here regularly see me refer to making an image backup. I am going to go into a little more detail of what this entails AND the many benefits that come with having an image backup.

    With the price of hard drives so cheap now and the fact that Macrium gives away a free version of their backup software Macrium Free version, there is no excuse for not backing up your system. In addition, newegg currently is selling Acronis True Image home for all of $39. Note they often reduce the price when Acronis releases a new version [price reduction on the older version]
    If you have either a WD or Seagate hard drive, you can download the FREE version of acronis from the respective site.

    When you did your last clean install, how long did it take you to have the system up and running with drivers installed, latest service pack installed, and windows activated? A reasonable time is 1~2hr depending on the speed of the system. How would you like to do this in 5~10 min? Well with an image of a clean install, that is all it takes.

    Here is what you do.
    1 Install the operating system.
    2 Update to latest service pack. For win2k sp4, xp sp3, and vista sp1. Win7 sp1. No sp for win 8 or 10 however I would update to the latest product update.
    3 Install chipset/motherboard drivers.
    4 Install sound, nic drivers as necessary.
    5 Install video driver

    If all is well, go ahead and activate windows. Once done, install either Macrium or Acronis software. Make an image of the system as it is now with all drivers and activation. Store this image on your second hard drive, external hard drive, network, NAS, etc. I generally use the name "Clean install" for this image.

    Once done with the above, when you need a "Clean" install, you simply boot with your recovery CD that both apps have you make. Restore the image. You now have a clean install in all of 5~10min depending on the speed of your system.

    There are many more uses for image backup software. Make an image of your system on a regular basis. I use the date for the image file name so it is easy to tell which image you are restoring. I like to make at least one or two images per week. If you have a hard drive fail, you just install a new drive and boot with your recovery CD. Restore the latest image and you are back to where you were when the image was made. No loss of time, data, etc.

    Are you going to try out a new operating system such as windows 10, Linux, Free BSD, etc? Well no problem. Just make an image of your system before you start. If you do not like whatever it is you install, just restore the image and have your system back to the way it was before you started. As you can see, there are many uses for imaging software.

    A final word on which app to choose. I like both Macrium and Acronis. If simple image backups are what you are going to do, then go with Macrium. If you run a server, raid drives, or need to clone disks, then go with Acronis True Image. Acronis has more features and does more however it is not free. Another option is clonezilla. While clonezilla is not the easiest thing to use, it is FREE and it has never failed to restore an image for me.

    Remember all hard drives fail. It is only a question of when your drive is going to fail. Do you want to lose important data, mp3s, videos, etc?
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2016
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  3. midders

    midders Account Closed

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    Excellent advice and well worth the small amount of time it takes to implement.

    In addition to the above, I use a small (10Gb) partition to install windows on and then install any large apps to the second partion (D:\Program files 2\...). The resulting image files with Ghost using fast compression will fit on a single DVDR, and if you make the DVDR bootable and chuck the Ghost.exe on there as well you have an instant product recovery disk.

    Sláinte

    midders
     
  4. jnathan

    jnathan

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    Good Thread, My Samsung 80 GB is making sound inside, says "File record segment is unreadable" . I am deeply sad not to have kept full backup of that drive. Anyone with any suggestion , how to recover the data?
     
  5. Compiler

    Compiler

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    Ah Ghost... back in the Win95~98 days and before Norton/Symantec screwed it up... was a dream! It fit on a floppy disk at 600~1000k.

    I'll give this program a try.
     
  6. paragon101

    paragon101

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    Yesterday, I had to restore an image that I made using Paragon Drive Backup 9.0 Express. The restore was flawless. However, today when I tried to make a new backup; it didn't want to back up. It hangs. It sees the drive as Basic Drive Partition 0 Drive 0.

    Any suggestions?
     
  7. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    "Bootable" into what? If you want to run any app, or ghost.exe, then you have to have an operating system. How would you put the operating system on the CD and which one would it be?

    But, this thread is a "sticky", posted here for informational purposes and not for problem-solving. People with problems, please start your own threads in the appropriate subforum.
     
  8. Compiler

    Compiler

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    Use a bootable CD-ROM disc, especially with a Win95/95 or a USB key. Anything to get a command prompt.
     
  9. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    A CD-ROM, or anything else for that matter, has to contain an operating system in order to boot. That is what "boot" means--to start the operating system.

    Then, once an operating system has been booted, you can run programs that are made to run on that particular operating system, but not just any program that exists.
     
  10. midders

    midders Account Closed

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    I use the Win 98 SE boot image; it includes the excellent generic Oak CD/DVD rom driver.

    Sláinte

    midders
     
  11. Compiler

    Compiler

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    Back before the death of Floppy drives, I always had a Win98boot floppy handy, since some computers couldn't boot from a CD-ROM drive (like notebooks back then). Before NTFS, the WinCD boot CD was a life saver. But I'd also configure clients PCs with a hidden Win98 DIR. I used to take a problematic Win98 system (including my own) and without a disc or floppy - wipe out Win98, and do a clean install. Trick: use Win98's "boot to DOS mode" - and I always stored a copy of the fdisk to use on another partition. From DOS, delete all files or re-format C:, then re-install the OS off the HD... so much faster than CD.

    But with XP, not so simple... but XP doesn't need to be re-installed as much as Win9x.
     
  12. new tech guy

    new tech guy

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    Ahh that post reminded me of the old win95 boot floppy i have sitting in the basement, great little boot disc should you need to run somthing. Used it in the past to update a system bios as the program needed execution from a dos prompt.
     
  13. Elvandil

    Elvandil

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    Yes, the old floppy drives still have some uses, and I plan to have one on all my machines for the forseeable future. There are so many good tools that I have still on floppy, including the entire Paragon Partitioning Suite 6 that runs completely from floppy and even includes a defargmenter for NTFS.:D
     
  14. midders

    midders Account Closed

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    Why bother hanging on to old technology? Floppy disks are so unreliable that looking at them wrong can cause the data to be corrupted. You can get blank CDRs for less than 8p a go and a CDROM drive costs less than a floppy drive, these days. It's just as bootable and easy to use as a floppy, so I can't see any valid reason for installing a floppy drive in a new system.

    Sláinte

    midders
     
  15. Compiler

    Compiler

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    I stop putting floppy drives in my PCs about 2000. But I always have 1-2 floppy drives with a cable wrapped around them handy for when its needed. Like setting up a RAID, or an older computer. Thats where XP shows is stupidity is when it ONLY accept drivers from a floppy drive (RAID, SATA, SCSI, etc) - when it SHOULD know how to accept a USB flash drive from at least SP1. Considering that the BIOS can boot from a flash drive!
     
  16. midders

    midders Account Closed

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    You're right; it should know better, but you can always slipstream the drivers onto the install disk prior to installing; if you use nLite, you don't even have to know how it works!

    Sláinte

    midders
     
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