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Windows 7: Create System Image of an external hard drive

26 Nov 2013   #1

Windows 7
Create System Image of an external hard drive

The Background:
Yesterday a computer in our office started misbehaving. Over the weekend, several Windows updates were installed. On Monday the user would open windows explorer and within 30 seconds or so he was prompted with a message saying something to the effect of, "windows encountered an error and had to close". All the windows including software such as Outlook and AutoCad would then close. There was no restart or shut down, just everything closing. This happened repeatedly.

I instructed him to find a restore point. He later told me the only restore points available were from Friday and then over the weekend, so he chose the latest one, that being Friday. After the restore was complete, the machine began to run through the normal boot process. However, once the windows symbol fully displayed, it would go to the black screen that normally briefly appears before your desktop appears, but the desktop never appears. The machine beeps and then re-boots. After the re-boot, you get the normal screen that prompts you with two choices, launch a repair or start normally. In either case, you get the same result as I just mentioned.

The Question:
Unfortunately, a system image of the troubled machine was never created. I pulled the hard drive and with a SATA adapter I connected it to a working machine and was able to read the drive with no problems. Can I create a system image of the now "external hard drive"? I would then use that system image (which would be saved on our network) to try an restore the ailing machine.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!!!


My System SpecsSystem Spec

26 Nov 2013   #2

Windows 7 Professional 32-bit/Windows 8 64-bit/Win7 Pro64-bit

My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2013   #3

Win 7 Pro x64 SP1, Win 7 Ult x86 SP1

I doubt creating a system image now and restoring it will help.
System Images need to be created before problems arise, so the restore uses a "working" image of the OS.
I expect image/restore now will restore the problem...
My System SpecsSystem Spec

10 Dec 2013   #4

Windows 7

Thanks everyone for the advice/suggestions.

The image I created did not work. In the end, I was able to retrieve all of the data from the drive and then reformat it.

I have other questions concerning this whole ordeal, but I will start a new thread on those topics.

Thanks again!
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Create System Image of an external hard drive

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