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Windows 7: windows cant find system image when trying to full restore from ext HD

23 Mar 2013   #1
freetvee

win 7 64 bit
 
 
windows cant find system image when trying to full restore from ext HD

Short version: I can see the system image files in windows explorer that I recently backed up on to my external hard drive. However, windows cant find the system image when trying to do a full restore from the same external HD?!?

Long version: I did a system image of my the old PC before starting the to do a sysprep process. Then I did the sysprep w/ generalize all is going well. I then tried to do another windows system image in sysprep mode. It seemed to be going well, until ironically i got worried about the new image replacing the old image so i went into windows explorer created a new folder and moved the old image. I then tried to system image and windows popped back with an error (sorry cant remember the specifics). I closed out of windows back up and tried reopening it numerous times. then it froze up as did windows explorer (they were all just blank boxes) so I had to do a restart. When I restart it was setting up windows again from new, which I got out of and into recovery mode since I just want to restore my full system as it was before (windows was already fully installed).

I have tried several different ways to boot into the recovery and restore the original system image (even after moving it back to its original location) and windows just cant find it. I can actually find that image on my external hard drive, its now even in the right spot (I moved it back to where I copied it from), but Windows just cant find it?!? Help please!!!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

23 Mar 2013   #2
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

You should be able to mount the vhd and make an image of the mounted drive using something else- e.g. Aomei Backupper free, Macrium free etc.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Mar 2013   #3
freetvee

win 7 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SIW2 View Post
You should be able to mount the vhd and make an image of the mounted drive using something else- e.g. Aomei Backupper free, Macrium free etc.
Dont want to sound like a knob, but what is VHD and how do I mount it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


24 Mar 2013   #4
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

VHD is the format windows image backup uses. There is a .vhd file in the saved backup folder.

You need to have file extensions showing to see .vhd extension.

You can mount it with a number of programs, including disk management.

System Image - Extract Files Using Disk Management
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Mar 2013   #5
freetvee

win 7 64 bit
 
 

thanks. I can get to the VHD file on my external HD already. Are you suggesting I use Acrium or Aeomi free instead of Windows to restore my old system (since windows isnt finding it). Will both of these free services restore everything exactly like it was even though I didnt originally save the system image with one of these programs? Hopefully its pretty obvious how to start the system restore with these programs, is one recommended over the other?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Mar 2013   #6
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

Best thing is to mount the vhd in disk management.

It then appears like any other drive.

Make an image of the mounted drive with macrium/aomei , save the image somewhere. Then use macrium/aomei to restore the image.

Quote:
Are you suggesting I use Acrium or Aeomi free instead of Windows to restore my old system
yes

Quote:
Hopefully its pretty obvious how to start the system restore with these programs
yes

Quote:
is one recommended over the other?
They are both popular. I am using Aomei atm myself, Just for fun really, ( I have the expensive paragon hdm12 which has a lot more features - but it is not a free program )

Quote:
Will both of these free services restore everything exactly like it was
yes


Aomei Backupper download only 14mb
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Mar 2013   #7
Victor S

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Freetv, not sure where you are now with your system, but after you get it up and running, look into using Macrium instead of the Win 7 imaging. And do "cold" imaging and restores, which means from the CD/DVD/Stick, instead of with Windows running. It lessens the chance of "issues."
This is an excellent tutorial.
Image your system with free Macrium
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Mar 2013   #8
freetvee

win 7 64 bit
 
 

excellent info, thanks! so since my main pc isnt booting but I have it's system image (VHD) on my External HD... Could I do this in a totally separate PC and then somehow boot my old pc to load Aomei/the old system image even if I cant load up into windows, or is that getting too complex? The other option is I think I can reload windows again and then just not register it and start the process you mention for there...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Mar 2013   #9
freetvee

win 7 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Victor S View Post
Freetv, not sure where you are now with your system, but after you get it up and running, look into using Macrium instead of the Win 7 imaging. And do "cold" imaging and restores, which means from the CD/DVD/Stick, instead of with Windows running. It lessens the chance of "issues."
This is an excellent tutorial.
Image your system with free Macrium
Thanks Victor. See the other thread-it kind of blew up on me before I could get it started... Windows 7 Installation - Transfer to a New Computer Once I get my original system image back I will try it again!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Mar 2013   #10
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

Yes,


If you install aomei on win7 it can make a pe image for booting.

Otherwise, you can download a premade boot iso from aomei . You just need to burn it as an image to cd/dvd

Download AOMEI Backupper Linux Bootable Disc Image




Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by freetvee View Post
excellent info, thanks! so since my main pc isnt booting but I have it's system image (VHD) on my External HD... Could I do this in a totally separate PC and then somehow boot my old pc to load Aomei/the old system image even if I cant load up into windows, or is that getting too complex? The other option is I think I can reload windows again and then just not register it and start the process you mention for there...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 windows cant find system image when trying to full restore from ext HD




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