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Windows 7: System Image same as Cloned drive?

29 Sep 2012   #1
dougb73

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 
System Image same as Cloned drive?

So I have a system image from Windows Backup and Restore. Is it the same thing as a Cloned drive? If not, what differences are there?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Sep 2012   #2
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

If you restored your image to say a brand new HDD of the same or greater size you would end up with a fully functional system (OS, programs, data etc) just like if you cloned. Cloning is just a bit by bit/ sector by sector copy. Cloning would copy everything which you don't really need like pagefile contents etc.

Using imaging you need no preparation of the new HDD just physically connect it (by itself) and run the image restore process. Dead easy.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Sep 2012   #3
Mark Phelps

Win7 Pro 32-bit, Win8 Pro 32-bit
 
 

Other differences ...

System images are typically compressed to save space. So, if you have a 70GB partition, with not much in it, the image itself might only take up 30GB or less. A cloned drive is an exact copy of the drive -- so it requires the same space as the drive.

Image backups in Win7 typically only back up the "boot" partition and the OS partition. If you have other partitions on the drive (e.g., a shared data partition), that would not automatically be included in the backup. With a drive clone, you get ALL the partitions on the drive -- since it is a complete copy.
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30 Sep 2012   #4
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dougb73 View Post
So I have a system image from Windows Backup and Restore. Is it the same thing as a Cloned drive? If not, what differences are there?
Images are a backup---a way of recovering a system from a disaster. They can also be used to simply move to another hard drive when there has been no disaster. Images are stored on another drive for later use (restoration)

Clones are not a backup. A clone is a transfer of the system to another drive when all is going well---typically to move to a new hard drive. Clones are not something you go to in a disaster. Clones are used in real-time, with nothing stored in anticipation of later use.

If all is going well, no disasters, and you simply want to move to another drive, either imaging or cloning may work----or fail. Most here use images for that purpose---or a clean install.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Apr 2016   #5
betaupsilon

Windows 7 Home Prem 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dougb73 View Post
So I have a system image from Windows Backup and Restore. Is it the same thing as a Cloned drive? If not, what differences are there?
Images are a backup---a way of recovering a system from a disaster. They can also be used to simply move to another hard drive when there has been no disaster. Images are stored on another drive for later use (restoration)

Clones are not a backup. A clone is a transfer of the system to another drive when all is going well---typically to move to a new hard drive. Clones are not something you go to in a disaster. Clones are used in real-time, with nothing stored in anticipation of later use.

If all is going well, no disasters, and you simply want to move to another drive, either imaging or cloning may work----or fail. Most here use images for that purpose---or a clean install.
I recently attempted to CLONE my system drive & all went well, but the SYSTEM RESTORE points were not included. I did the CLONE because I knew a previous IMAGE does not include past or current RESTORE points. Do you know how to get the RESTORE pts included in a CLONE?

BTW: I used MACRIUM to do the CLONE.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 May 2016   #6
MeOnMine

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1 OEM
 
 

A clone has to have your restore points, a clone is a copy of the parent HDD.
I take an Image of my PC every 2 to 3 weeks or when ever I need to load software or play with volatile subjects.
So for this reason I turn Restore Off.
My images are my restore, why waste time copying restore data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2016   #7
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MeOnMine View Post
So for this reason I turn Restore Off.
I have restore off all the time but it shouldn't matter anyway - should it when it comes to system imaging?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2016   #8
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MeOnMine View Post
A clone has to have your restore points, a clone is a copy of the parent HDD.
I take an Image of my PC every 2 to 3 weeks or when ever I need to load software or play with volatile subjects.
So for this reason I turn Restore Off.
My images are my restore, why waste time copying restore data.
Pretty much the same here. I never could get System Restore to work in Win 7 so I turned it off and use images made with Macrium Reflect. I only make images of my boot drive (OS and Programs).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2016   #9
ThrashZone

Win-7-Pro64bit 7-H-Prem-64bit
 
 

Hi,
Yep system protection is usually useless it has never completely restored windows mostly all system restore does is confuse windows causing other problems.

As long as you do system images regularly they are your backups indeed why waste the disk space on something that is so bad at restoring a system
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2016   #10
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

It's easier to understand the difference between imaging and cloning if one uses a photography analogy. an image is like a photo negative. Same as a photo negative is used to make a print, an image is used to create a duplicate of the original. If making a copy of a drive using imaging, one first has to make an image onto another drive, then use that image to reproduce the first drive onto a third drive or the original drive. One advantage of images is they are normally compressed, meaning they take up less room on a storage drive, allowing one to store several off them.

Cloning is more like a photo copier. It makes an exact copy of a drive onto another drive without the use of an image. The advantages of cloning for making a duplicate drive are it is faster and it eliminates the need for the extra drive. Cloning can be used for backups but it is extremely inefficient most of the time. Imaging is better for making backups.

Imaging is best suited for backing up only boot drives or partitions (OS and Programs only). Imaging and cloning are not practical for backing up data. A folder/file syncing program (I like FreeFileSync) is much more efficient and faster for backing up data and will give you a duplicate drive with your data on it.

Imaging is best for backing up drives. Cloning is best for duplicating a drive.
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 System Image same as Cloned drive?




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