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Windows 7: I'm trying to use backup and Restore to create series of system images


14 Jan 2012   #1

windows 7 ultimate 32 bit
 
 
I'm trying to use backup and Restore to create series of system images

I hope this is the correct way of posting my concern.
I have used system images for many years and they have got me out of trouble many times.
Currently I'm trying to use windows 7 ulimate, backup and Restore to create a sequence of system images. The procedure provided by Microsoft ensures that each image produced overwrites the last one. Their instructions also suggest that multiple images can be produced but need to be stored "separately". This does not seem to work properly as the restore function does not pickup all the images.
At this point i have no solution to this difficulty.
I keep my system images on an external 2TB drive but have tried using other partitions on the internal drive. The restore function only seems to see one of the internal partitions. It sees the external 2 TB drive OK. I don't think the 2TB drive is an issue.
Any ideas would be appreciated.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Jan 2012   #2
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Do NOT use Windows imaging for what you are trying to do. It is so restrictive and touchy that you will not be happy with it.

I suggest you use free Macrium or free Paragon.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jan 2012   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

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

This tutorial should explain how to do it. Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Jan 2012   #4

windows 7 ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Thanks for a number of responses to my post.
We may have a minor issue of terminology here, although it does not change my understanding of the responses.
When i speak of a System Image I refer to the c: drive only. I keep all data on separate partitions, meaning results from using Office software. I don't feel data is part of the "system".
I've tried changing the names of the WindowsImageBackup files. This was an obvious way out. But as one of the replies indicated, you have to rename the file back again to restore. Means also you must change the last one after making it each time. Surely Microsoft could have figured out a better namimg system than that. The restore feature is locked in to recognising "WindowsImageBackup". i guess my only redourse now is to talk micrsift into an SP to fix this? Or is there a fix fr this?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Jan 2012   #5

 
 

Use this .bat script. Full automation capabilities for Windows 7 System Image. Space management PER target drive, round-robin of multiple target drives, renaming of folders to allow multiple System Images on each target drive, etc. and every piece of information related to system images that can be found.

Event log info, shadow entries info, matching each shadow to an image, letting you know about orphaned Shadow entries, mismatched target drive letter between Shadow and your WindowsImageBackup folder containing said System Image, disk space usage for each Image and total disk used on each target drive, etc.

This .bat works and basically mimics the way NON-system image backups work (naming convention for the \Backup folder node name). It's over 2000 lines of code.

See attachments.


Attached Files
File Type: bat sysimage.bat (52.5 KB, 21 views)
File Type: txt sysimage.txt (52.5 KB, 28 views)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2012   #6

windows 7 ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JimLewandowski View Post
Use this .bat script. Full automation capabilities for Windows 7 System Image. Space management PER target drive, round-robin of multiple target drives, renaming of folders to allow multiple System Images on each target drive, etc. and every piece of information related to system images that can be found.

Event log info, shadow entries info, matching each shadow to an image, letting you know about orphaned Shadow entries, mismatched target drive letter between Shadow and your WindowsImageBackup folder containing said System Image, disk space usage for each Image and total disk used on each target drive, etc.

This .bat works and basically mimics the way NON-system image backups work (naming convention for the \Backup folder node name). It's over 2000 lines of code.

See attachments.
Thanks for those comments. Do I need to understand what a "shadow entry" is? I'll give the bat file a try and come back if i may with questions, if necessary.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2012   #7

windows 7 ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by keith99 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JimLewandowski View Post
Use this .bat script. Full automation capabilities for Windows 7 System Image. Space management PER target drive, round-robin of multiple target drives, renaming of folders to allow multiple System Images on each target drive, etc. and every piece of information related to system images that can be found.

Event log info, shadow entries info, matching each shadow to an image, letting you know about orphaned Shadow entries, mismatched target drive letter between Shadow and your WindowsImageBackup folder containing said System Image, disk space usage for each Image and total disk used on each target drive, etc.

This .bat works and basically mimics the way NON-system image backups work (naming convention for the \Backup folder node name). It's over 2000 lines of code.

See attachments.
Thanks for those comments. Do I need to understand what a "shadow entry" is? I'll give the bat file a try and come back if i may with questions, if necessary.
Sorry, I downloaded the bat file. I haven't the faintest idea how to make use of the info you've provided.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Jan 2012   #8

 
 

Did you run it?

Run with all drives attached/mounted.

For informational information only (i.e. don't rename, delete or start a new system image):

sysimage.bat /I Y

This will give you a complete picture of all system image-related data. It will list all found system images within all WindowsImageBackup folders on all mounted drives/partitions.

Needing to know what a shadow entry is, isn't important.

This .bat script is basically allowing you multiple system images on a target partition/drive. It will rename a just-taken system image's folder appropriately to allow the next one for that target drive to not overwrite the previous. However, the beauty of the script is managing how many or how many gigabytes of system images you want to keep on a given target(s) drive.

Browse the prolog of the .bat file for examples on what it can do based on /parm settings.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 I'm trying to use backup and Restore to create series of system images




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