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Windows 7: Free versions -- Now IMO virtually USELESS


25 Nov 2012   #1

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 
Free versions -- Now IMO virtually USELESS

Hi there
seems corporations are really getting STINGY these days

The Free versions of backup utilities seem to be getting more and more hobbled with each release.

EASUS is now so rediculuous that it doesn't even create a bootable version to restore an image -- so what USE is that to anybody --you might just as well use the Windows 7 built in utility bad though it is. -- A decent backup program should ALWAYS have the facility to create a bootable rescue media otherwise it's just NOT FIT FOR PURPOSE.

Paragon Free now no longer lets you re-size the partition on restore -- you have to fiddle around with a separate partition manager and it won't let you boot into the system recovery partition either if you have one.

I know people want to make you buy FULL VERSION programs -- but offering very hobbled restrictive free products IMO doesn't do the companies any good -- especially for IMPORTANT things like backups etc where you want to be 100% sure that your data and OS is SAFE. A MUCH MUCH better business model is to offer a 30 day Free trial which means you can exhaustively test the software and see if it meets your needs.

CLONEZILLA (Linux alternative) still works fine as a free product but I'm not really sure if relying on open source software is a sensible strategy to adopt for a really important part of your system and data. Don't get me wrong - I'm a HUGE believer in open source but sometimes it's not the best choice and Clonezilla is a bit geekish to use so I'd say out for the average user who usually has a problem in understanding why they need backup at all until the lose all the ITunes Music. !!.

Any of you thinking of using these free backup programs --check CAREFULLY what features they have and whether its what you need -- as you'll soon see that in most cases unless you have very simple requirements they aren't much better than the basic Windows backup (which has improved in W8 BTW).

Cheers
jimbo

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25 Nov 2012   #2

Windows 7, 64 bit Home SP1, Win 8.1.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

I was having a problem with Acronis True Image (that I eventually resolved). I downloaded a trial version of Macrium, to try it out, and it would not allow me to make a backup. Every time I tried it would abort with an error code. Obviously that was the end of Macrium for me.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Nov 2012   #3

Windows 7 home premium x64
 
 

Macrium reflect has served me well for many years and you can make bootable recovery media with it.
You have to download Win PE (SAIK) but only the once, the program uses it to create rescue media.
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25 Nov 2012   #4

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by cyclic View Post
Macrium reflect has served me well for many years and you can make bootable recovery media with it.
You have to download Win PE (SAIK) but only the once, the program uses it to create rescue media.
Hi there

my main issue with Macrium free is that it doesn't work with USB3 ext disks on W8. I didn't actually say Macrium couldn't create bootable restore disks -- that "Distinction" I gave to EASUS!!!

I was testing Macrium Free edition SAVING a W8 SSD image to a USB3 external HDD drive. No GPT or UEFI boot -- 100% Bog standard and simple -- program ABENDS screen shot enc.

(I know this is Windows 7 but I haven't got a Windows 7 machine with USB3 disks to test it on but this is what you get on W8 trying to save an SSD image to a USB3 external HDD. -- screen shot enc)

Note the USB3 disks are USB3 type (not USB2 being used on a USB 3 port) and the port is a genuine USB3 port.

The whole thing did actually work when USB3 disk was attached to a USB2 port although then much much slower -- which is why I got a laptop with a USB3 port in it in the first place. USB3 really is OODLES of times faster than USB2. So laptop with SSD for the OS and external storage with USB3 when you need it is the best combo for me. The small self powered 2 TB (yes 2 TB) passport USB3 drives are brilliant these days.

I don't mind the "Linux" rescue CD's -- the GUI is fine even for Windows users but if the "Normal" product doesn't work why should I invest time in the Stand alone version. Sometimes to restore a disk I don't want to do it stand alone unless I'm restoring the OS.

Cheers
jimbo


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25 Nov 2012   #5
4wd

W8+8.1, W7 ult+hp, XP
 
 

Quote:
EASUS is now so rediculuous that it doesn't even create a bootable version to restore an image -- so what USE is that to anybody --you might just as well use the Windows 7 built in utility bad though it is. -- A decent backup program should ALWAYS have the facility to create a bootable rescue media otherwise it's just NOT FIT FOR PURPOSE.
I do not see the problem, make the boot cd or usb stick, and use it when\if needed, works perfect.
Have done 100's of successful Easeus images, backups, restores & hd swaps, personally + doing paid maintenance. Many years of regular use from xp to w8, it's an excellent tool.

(edit: am using both free and paid versions, all will create boot\rescue media)


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25 Nov 2012   #6

Windows 7, 64 bit Home SP1, Win 8.1.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

I created a WinPE/Acronis rescue disc, which fixed my problem with Acronis. Because of the problem with Acronis, until I created the WinPE disc, I was trying something else (Macrium). I downloaded the trial version of the full Macrium program, not the free Macrium version. Because of the error I got every time I tried to make a back up with Macrium and that I fixed my Acronis problem, I abandoned any further attempt with Macrium and uninstalled it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2012   #7

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by 4wd View Post
Quote:
EASUS is now so rediculuous that it doesn't even create a bootable version to restore an image -- so what USE is that to anybody --you might just as well use the Windows 7 built in utility bad though it is. -- A decent backup program should ALWAYS have the facility to create a bootable rescue media otherwise it's just NOT FIT FOR PURPOSE.
I do not see the problem, make the boot cd or usb stick, and use it when\if needed, works perfect.
Have done 100's of successful Easeus images, backups, restores & hd swaps, personally + doing paid maintenance. Many years of regular use from xp to w8, it's an excellent tool.

(edit: am using both free and paid versions, all will create boot\rescue media)

Hi there
Unless you look for the Free version specifically there's no mention on the EASUS website that a Free version even exists. !!!

However google and you arrive at the part of the site where it's mentioned.

From the FAQ it says the current FREE version -- you have to BUILD yourself a PE disk to create bootable media -- too complex for a lot of people -- we just want a built in utility.

Create bootable disk - EaseUS Todo Backup online help

here's the features listed

(However again in tiny to find -- you CAN make a linux bootable CD / USB --that's fine by me --info on website unclear --seems they really don't want people to find out about the Free version any more).

Still looks as though the LINUX bootable media can only do RECOVERY and not BACKUP --better than nothing but I like to do BOTH backup and recovery via stand alone bootable media.


cheers
jimbo


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26 Nov 2012   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

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

Virtually all free imaging programs only supply the Linux recovery environment. The reason, they say, is a licencing issue with the WinPE environment so its all Microsoft's fault. Macrium get around this by allowing you to build a PE disk using the WAIK, but this does involve a hefty (1.7GB) download from Microsoft.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2012   #9

Windows 7, 64 bit Home SP1, Win 8.1.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

The WAIK download and Acronis True Image Plus Pack is required to build the WinPE/Acronis rescue disc. Otherwise its a Linux bootable rescue disc.

I thought the procedure, from what I saw on the Acronis forum, would be complicated but it wasn't that bad.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2012   #10

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by fireberd View Post
The WAIK download and Acronis True Image Plus Pack is required to build the WinPE/Acronis rescue disc. Otherwise its a Linux bootable rescue disc.

I thought the procedure, from what I saw on the Acronis forum, would be complicated but it wasn't that bad.
Hi guys
You are missing the point here

Acronis - for all its problems- currently supplies almost the same features on the LINUX BOOT CD / USB - even though it's a Linux one as the MAIN program itself on a Windows PC. -- so you can BACKUP, RESTORE, BACKUP to DIFFERENT SIZE PARTITIONS, RESTORE TO DIFFERENT HARDWARE etc.

The GUI is fine also so even a Windows user won't have any trouble using it.

There is also a WinPE type of method you can use but it's not needed with Acronis. You can build one if you need to.

EASUS FREE from the Linux CD is simply a RESTORE function --won't even re-size the partition. YOU CAN'T BACKUP WITH IT. -- If that's all you want or need --fine -- but I really need the full functionality even if I'm booting from CD / DVD.

Cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Free versions -- Now IMO virtually USELESS




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