Windows 7 Forums
Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.


Windows 7: Full system image restore & testing

25 Apr 2010   #1

win 7 Home premium X64
 
 
Full system image restore & testing

Hi

I have a win 7 x64 system on a partition "C" drive SATA 250GB and this drive is partitioned with another 2 data drives. (1TB total)

I want to buy another SATA drive to use as a backup image drive which will be used internally which will be a large drive of 2TB what I thought I would do was partition this drive to hold the backup images of the "C" drive and another partition area for doing image testing to prove the image works (and still keep the original just in case on the C drive with no changes) The drive should be large enough to keep the full size of the test images on there own partition.

I have done images from both Windows 7 own image program and Acronis True Image Home 2010 Trial to see which works best (would like to use the built in one as acronis I hear is having problems in win 7 and I need to be able to test a program)

I know I can change the boot order in my bios to boot from another hard drive which should allow me to boot from the new hard drive.



My questions are
  • If booting from this new drive will windows object having another drive on the system called C or will one drive have its letter changed (I think I read win 7 can boot from another letter)?
  • If so will it mess the original drive letter up and course problems later when testing is over? or will this drive go back to being "C" when the new image boot drive is deleted? (as I do not want any changes to this drive through testing and once the image is teste I want things to go back to the way they was before image testing)
  • Or would I have to disable the old C drive to test (remove its power cord
Thanks for any help you can give me I just want to find a safe way of testing an image with no risk to the original disk C.

If you need any more information or if I have not explanined my self very well please ask.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

25 Apr 2010   #2

Windows® 8 Pro (64-bit)
 
 

Hi there, whatever drive is set to the 1st boot device in BIOS, that hard drive will be used to boot. So it doesnt really matter if you have 2 hard drives and both contains a "C" drive. you also dont need to unplug and drive while booting one. just set the default drive in BIOS. Your idea of backup is great. Also, I recommend using windows system image backup. Hope this helps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Apr 2010   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Follow Dinesh's good advice.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


25 Apr 2010   #4

win 7 Home premium X64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Dinesh View Post
Hi there, whatever drive is set to the 1st boot device in BIOS, that hard drive will be used to boot. So it doesnt really matter if you have 2 hard drives and both contains a "C" drive. you also dont need to unplug and drive while booting one. just set the default drive in BIOS. Your idea of backup is great. Also, I recommend using windows system image backup. Hope this helps.

Thanks Dinesh for the quick reply and helping me put my mind at rest!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Apr 2010   #5

Windows® 8 Pro (64-bit)
 
 

You are welcome.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 May 2010   #6

win 7 Home premium X64
 
 

I now have my new 2 Tb drive and I would like a little more clarification because windows restore is a bit basic and does not give me all the information I would like to confidently image the main C (Main) drive to the new test drive U (New volume).
As it does not tell you or give a choice which drive to use. I have done a screen shot of all my drives I know with so many it makes it real confusing
Full system image restore & testing-capture.jpg
Please tell me I am correct in my thinking,

The main 2 drives I am backing up at the moment are going to be the C (Main) drive along with the Z (Third) data drive which this drive contains all my window folders like docs, download, Favourites moved from C (Main).

Now if in the bios I change the boot order so that the U (new volume) drive is set to boot. Then tell win image restore to only restore my C (Main) image at the moment this will be complete on the U (new volume) drive and if windows is then allowed to boot this would be the drive that windows loads from and once loaded it would then work fine as before with drive Z?

(As windows image will image only to the C drive and changing the boot will make U the C drive correct?)

Sorry I know this is getting a bit heavy and soon I will need my own IT department but I was also thinking that if the new C image was a little old it would not have some of the more recent references to some of the files on the Z drive would this mater in this testing state and MORE importantly would this matter when the original drive C Main is set to boot.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 May 2010   #7

win 7 Home premium X64
 
 

Does anyone have any ideas about the above or would it be recomended to use a third party program???
(not acronis 2010 as the recovery disc crash's on my computer)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jul 2010   #8

Windows 7 x64
 
 
Still Open?

Did you ever resolve this? There are lots of directions on creating a Windows 7 system image, but very little on how to test it without risking your system.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
03 Aug 2010   #9

win 7 Home premium X64
 
 

I gave up on the built in image back up as it did not give me what I needed.

So with help for acronis customer service I managed to create a working back disk which liked by system (all the other free ones did not work well and this had to be built with a windows PE disk and windows drivers).

I asked the question about trying the above backup and testing method and they said it would work fine (I have not tried it as yet and below it what information they sent me)

As for the testing restore procedure, your thoughts are absolutely correct - you can restore your system image (image of C: partition) to the U: drive and test how it works after that. Please be aware that all links to your downloads, favorites, etc. you have set up will stay intact as the information about these links are located in the registry itself and will be restored along with your system.

So the basic testing procedure will be:

1. Create an image of disk C:.
2. Boot from Acronis bootable rescue media. Please be aware that letters can be named in different way in rescue environment: http://kb.acronis.com/content/1519
3. Restore the image to new drive U:.
4. Wait for the operation to be completed.
5. Reboot the machine and go to the BIOS.
6. Set the boot sequence to be booted from drive U:.
7. Save the settings and reboot the machine.


Hope it helps
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Mar 2012   #10

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Hi

I was wondering if this person ended up successfully testing Acronis True Image by restoring to a 2nd drive on their system BUT without it affecting their normal working C drive.

I have validated my backup in Windows and on the rescue boot media which after updating my 2011 copy can now recognise all drives and the network card.

My system drive is a 120Gb SSD - working fine.

I have a 1Tb internal HD, which i created a 200gb partition in to test and another 1Tb USB external Hardrive. I have a backup on the external drive which I want to restore to the 1Tb internal drive and then swap the boot order to it and see if Windows 7 loads correctly.

However I am afraid that when I switch the boot priority back and go and delete the temporary test partition with the restored backup something may go awry with my main original Windows 7 Pro install?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 Full system image restore & testing




Thread Tools




Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

© Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:58 PM.
Twitter Facebook Google+



Windows 7 Forums

Seven Forums Android App Seven Forums IOS App
  

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33