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Windows 7: Imaging strategies

25 Nov 2013   #131
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Good deal. Looks like you did everuthing right. I was just worried that you get stuck with that 1.7GB WAIK download. Last time I did it, it took 2 hours. But I have a slow ATT line.

Btw:
During the imaging process, you can 'hide' the window and go on doing other things. Macrium freezes the system status at the beginning and the imaging rolls on in the background.

Besides the rescue CD you can also create a rescue stick. Now that you have the WAIK, that will only take a couple of minutes. It takes 1.6MB on the stick so a small stick suffices.

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25 Nov 2013   #132

Desk Top with Win 7 Home Premium 64 bit and Lap Top with Windows 8.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post

Btw:
During the imaging process, you can 'hide' the window and go on doing other things. Macrium freezes the system status at the beginning and the imaging rolls on in the background.
I like that. At first I thought I misunderstood you as I wondered how you could make an image of something that you are in the process of currently changing. But am I now understanding it right that it takes a snap shot and regardless of what you are doing, the snap shot does not change? It's mind boggling how that works. Thanks again for your help.
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25 Nov 2013   #133
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Right, it is the snapshot technique. And I think they use the Volume Shadow Copy service for that. Remember how fast that is to create a restore point.

Another couple of tips:

If you 1) click on Backup Definition File, 2) Highlight the kind of image you like to make and 3) click on the cogwheel, then it will exactly repeat the image with the definitions you made previously for that case. That's why it is good to give a name to the xml files - after you said 'Finish' at the definition phase.

The xml files are in a folder named 'Reflect' in your Documents folder. If you ever want to get rid of a definition, delete the xml there - not within Macrium. It's cleaner.

Imaging strategies-2013-11-25_2046.png

You can schedule your images. Of course the system has to be running at that time. See pics for details.

Imaging strategies-2013-11-25_2056.png

Imaging strategies-2013-11-25_2059.png


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05 Jan 2014   #134

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I'm trying to formulate a strategy to make a boot-able backup. I have a 128 GB SDD where my OS (Windows 7 Ultimate) resides. I then have a 2 TB hard drive, D & E partitions. The D partition is where I store my applications, page files, logs, etc. (I do this to keep as much as possible off my SDD to extend it's life but still boots fast. The E partition is my data which I sync to another 1 TB drive.

I have a new 1 TB drive that I've partitioned to 128 GB and the second is the rest of the 1 TB. I migrated my OS from the SDD using Paragon Hard Drive Suite 14 with a shutdown on completion. My next step would be to copy the D (applications) partition to that second new partition with the thought I would end up with a boot-able backup drive by removing my SDD and 2TB drives and setting the first boot device to the backup drive.

But I'm getting the feeling I've missed something so I've stopped at this point and thought it best to run this by people that know a lot more than I do.
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05 Jan 2014   #135
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

I think the OS when on the 1TB drive will still be looking for the other OS files on the original drive where you placed them. Moving those files to another drive does not update the addresses inside the OS. So bottom line - it won't work.

What you can do is to bring all those displaced OS files inboard onto the SSD and then image that OS to the 1TB drive. Then you are transferring a closed whole system with no external references.
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05 Jan 2014   #136

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
I think the OS when on the 1TB drive will still be looking for the other OS files on the original drive where you placed them. Moving those files to another drive does not update the addresses inside the OS. So bottom line - it won't work.

What you can do is to bring all those displaced OS files inboard onto the SSD and then image that OS to the 1TB drive. Then you are transferring a closed whole system with no external references.
Not sure I understand. You mean those displaced OS files are not referenced by file name? But I guess that makes sense too, now that I think about it. Probably why I stopped and asked the question.... I just felt something was wrong.

Thanks!
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06 Jan 2014   #137

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Keep your apps with your OS. Image that partition. Data goes elsewhere, and is handled separately.
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06 Jan 2014   #138

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Victor S View Post
Keep your apps with your OS. Image that partition. Data goes elsewhere, and is handled separately.
Definitely the way to go.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Jan 2014   #139

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

I'm a firm believer in KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid). Due to the increasing amount of data I have (imaging and cloning take too long now) and the desire to be able to access data from a backup without having to use a program to mount an image, the only thing I image anymore now is my boot SSD, which only has the OS and System Reserved partitions on it. I prefer Macrium Reflect over Win 7's imaging since I've never had MR fail me and I've read far too many accounts of people having problem with Win 7's imaging program. In fact, I've found imaging with MR to be far, far more reliable than System Restore so I shut the latter off.

Since the only thing I image anymore is the entire boot drive (the System Reserved is only 100 MB—big deal—so it's not a problem to play it safe and include it with each image), I don't need to bother with setting MR up each time since it retains the previous settings. I also disable making an XML file when making an image since I have no need for it anymore.

I have a folder on my main data drive to park my images in (I used to use dated folders to keep them in until whs pointed out that one can just use Windows file system to identify the date of a file; duh!). I'm a firm believer in planned redundancy for backups but it takes between 9 and 10 minutes to make an image (I'm imaging 60GB; I have a huge hiberfil.sys file I have to keep for my UPS) so making multiple images or copying them to multiple drives was a bit time consuming (I also have MR set to automatically verify an image after it is made; it almost doubles the total time for making an image but it saved me from betting burned by a bad image once). Since I have the Pro version (four license family pack), I have Recovery from Windows boot menu available to me so having a copy on an internal drive in my computer is handy for quick restores. The folder I have the images in then gets automatically backed up when I back up the drive it's on so my image redundancy is taken of care of for me (by switching from cloning to using a file and folder syncing program, I've got my data backups refined to the point I can run two daily backups in just a few minutes—running my daily quick scans and backups can easily be done during the commercials of an hour long TV program—and I no longer need to do weekly data backups which took about six hours to do.).

I make a weekly image every week after running full scans on my antimalware programs (I'm also now doing quick scans daily). I also make an image before and after making any changes to my System, such as updating programs or the system, installing new programs, etc. I keep all my images for the current and previous calendar month, the only keep the first image of each month prior to that. I also keep the first image I made after installing Win 7 and running all the updates and another one I took after installing programs.
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06 Jan 2014   #140

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kado897 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Victor S View Post
Keep your apps with your OS. Image that partition. Data goes elsewhere, and is handled separately.
Definitely the way to go.
Absolutely!
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