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Windows 7: Creating full Image of Hard disk System & recovery partitions (Dell)

08 Oct 2011   #1
zerone01

Windows 7
 
 
Creating full Image of Hard disk System & recovery partitions (Dell)

I have a Dell Inspiron 1520 with Vista Home Premium factory installed and now I need to install Windows 7. Before doing that I want to make sure I can restore my computer exactly to the way it came if anything goes wrong in the process of installing Win 7 or I needed back my original laptop with Vista.

Figured out the best way to create a complete image of my Hard drive.

  • Capacity is 320GB
  • 4 partitions - System Partition (C), Recovery Partition, some other 2 small partitions.
I have to modify these partitions and sizes when installing Win7. I want to completely image this HDD so I can get these back exactly the way they are now.

What is the best software I can use and what are the best methods? Please give me your opinions and instructions. Thanks.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

08 Oct 2011   #2
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

(1) Download Macrium Reflect (Free)
(2) Create an image with all 4 partitions selected
(3) Make the linux recovery boot CD
(4) Make sure the linux boot CD works and can locate the image you just made and shows the 4 partitions for selection. Exit.

If the linux boot CD fails to work as will happen on some system configurations you can try in place of the linux CD:
(1) Hirens Boot CD Macrium Reflect is part of the mini XP environment
OR
(2) Macrium pe recovery disk. To make this you will need to download the Macrium Reflect V5 trial and be prepared to do a large MS download of WAIK (~1GB). Macrium guides you through the quite straightforward process.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2011   #3
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Free Macrium is definitely a good choice. Here is a video tutorial: Imaging with free Macrium --- Free Paragon is another alternative. It has some features (e.g. restore with shrink) that Macrium does not have. But it is a bit more difficult to navigate.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


08 Oct 2011   #4
Bill2

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86
 
 

Create a set of recovery disks also.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2011   #5
kado897

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

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

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Free Macrium is definitely a good choice. Here is a video tutorial: Imaging with free Macrium --- Free Paragon is another alternative. It has some features (e.g. restore with shrink) that Macrium does not have. But it is a bit more difficult to navigate.
I think you are going to have to update that tutorial Wolfgang now that the free version 5 is out. The layout is quite different.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2011   #6
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kado897 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Free Macrium is definitely a good choice. Here is a video tutorial: Imaging with free Macrium --- Free Paragon is another alternative. It has some features (e.g. restore with shrink) that Macrium does not have. But it is a bit more difficult to navigate.
I think you are going to have to update that tutorial Wolfgang now that the free version 5 is out. The layout is quite different.
Yeah, maybe one day. But I am not using V5.0 yet. Why switch if something works perfectly. I am gettting lazy - else I already would have made a tutorial for Paragon.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2011   #7
zerone01

Windows 7
 
 
Thanks a lot everyone!

I will do it through Macrium to do my job. Thanks for all the quick responses, useful links and information. Post back if there is any problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Creating full Image of Hard disk System & recovery partitions (Dell)




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