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Windows 7: Open Files During "Create System Image"

28 Jun 2014   #1
FredParmenter

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
 
 
Open Files During "Create System Image"

I don't understand how Window 7's "Create System Image" could possibly work. What I mean is, when Windows is running aren't there lots of "open" files, processes or programs that would be better killed before the image process is run? For example, I run multiple databases that have all sorts of files open, or locked, while the database is online. How could "Create System Image" give me a good image I could restore from? Because the image would have all those locks in place.

Contrast this with a tool like MiniTool which allows you to make a copy of the C drive. It does this after shutting down Windows and before Window reboots. That way all of Windows' files are closed and inactive during the copy process.

I am sure the Windows' developers are about a thousand times brighter than I am, and I guess I believe "Create System Image" works, but I can't figure out how it could work while Windows in operation.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Jun 2014   #2
pbcopter

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1, Windows 8.1 Pro x64, Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

Windows uses what they call Shadow Copy to enable an image to be taken even if files are open.

Shadow Copy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Jun 2014   #3
FredParmenter

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
 
 

pbcopter, thank you for your reply. I had never heard of "shadow copy." I can see how that would work, but I wonder if that is what I want when I start a backup. If the database is in the middle of a process I don't want all those locks copied on to the backup copy. Of course, I can't blame the backup process for that. I guess what I should do is shutdown my databases and all other applications before I begin a backup. But I wonder. Couldn't there be all sorts of other processes, like anti-virus programs, or defrag programs, or other processes that I didn't explicitly start, and they are in the middle of doing something. Do I want my backup copy to capture a snapshot of all that work-in-progress? I wouldn't think so.

Maybe I am just over thinking the issue.

But I would feel much more secure if the Windows backup program worked the way some partition software works. They shut down the computer and do their work. That way they are dealing with a fixed-state system, i.e. no processes are running.

And wouldn't this comment be equally valid when doing a restore? How could you possibly do a restore to a live system? Wouldn't you want to reboot and have the restore done before Windows gets running?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Jun 2014   #4
pbcopter

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1, Windows 8.1 Pro x64, Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

I have used Windows backup and Acronis which works in the same way and have never had an issue with running programs.

I do not use a database program so I cannot comment of that.

You cannot do a restore to a running system. It is done after booting to a DVD.
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 Open Files During "Create System Image"




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