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Windows 7: Simple question about Windows 7 System Image


28 Aug 2012   #1
UnknownReverent

MS Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1
 
 
Simple question about Windows 7 System Image

I know you can create a system image in Windows 7, but I was always curious about what it really does. Is it basically like a recovery that comes with pre-built computers? Like the "press F8 for recovery" option? Or... for another example, the recovery cd/dvd that comes with the computer? I know you obviously don't get those options when making it. You have to go into either the control panel, system repair disc, or Windows 7 dvd you have. I know how I would use it, but I'm just curious if that's actually what it does. Also, does it completely format the drive when you use it like a recovery would for a pre-built computer that you buy and put Windows back on it with what you backed up?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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28 Aug 2012   #2
Britton30
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

A system image is an exact copy of your install at the moment you create it. It will have all your user accounts, programs you installed, settings, etc. A OEM recovery disk will reinstall w7 just as it came from the factory along with all the trial crap and bloatware on it. The drive will be reformatted when you restore an image.

I prefer Macrium Reflect for imaging over the w7 built in one. Macrium will give you options for the image, Windows doesn't.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2012   #3
UnknownReverent

MS Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Britton30 View Post
A system image is an exact copy of your install at the moment you create it. It will have all your user accounts, programs you installed, settings, etc. A OEM recovery disk will reinstall w7 just as it came from the factory along with all the trial crap and bloatware on it. The drive will be reformatted when you restore an image.

I prefer Macrium Reflect for imaging over the w7 built in one. Macrium will give you options for the image, Windows doesn't.
So it's basically like a recovery disk/partition that comes with an OEM computer, but you create it yourself? That's basically what I'm asking. It formats the hard drive back to the image that you created?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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28 Aug 2012   #4
AddRAM

Windows 7 Professional x64 Linux Mint 16
 
 

Exactly, except you have to boot from the disc. It works perfectly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2012   #5
UnknownReverent

MS Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
Exactly, except you have to boot from the disc. It works perfectly.
You can boot from the disc, startup repair, or control panel depending on if you can get on your computer or boot anything. I just want to make sure it formats the drive completely and installs the image that you saved. I've had some things like overwrite what I have and have a Windows (Old) folder. I just want to be sure it doesn't do that and does exactly what an OEM recovery does. If anyone gets what I mean.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2012   #6
Britton30
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

An image will not do what an OEM recovery does. OEM will erase all your date, an image will not, both will however reformat the drive. I hope you will store the image on another drive than what you're restoring it to.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2012   #7
UnknownReverent

MS Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Britton30 View Post
An image will not do what an OEM recovery does. OEM will erase all your date, an image will not, both will however reformat the drive. I hope you will store the image on another drive than what you're restoring it to.
So basically an image will still have some of the files from my old OS when I use it? I just want it to erase everything from my old one. Basically like a reinstall, but with all the files I saved to the image.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2012   #8
AddRAM

Windows 7 Professional x64 Linux Mint 16
 
 

It sounds like you`re not understanding this.

It will restore your pc to the exact way it was when you made the image, with all the files and programs you had at that time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2012   #9
UnknownReverent

MS Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
It sounds like you`re not understanding this.

It will restore your pc to the exact way it was when you made the image, with all the files and programs you had at that time.
I think I've made this a bit more confusing than I should have. What I'm trying to say is, will it erase everything that was on my drive prior to using the image to restore the OS, programs, etc.?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Aug 2012   #10
AddRAM

Windows 7 Professional x64 Linux Mint 16
 
 

The answer is no, it won`t.

It will erase, actually the term is delete, everything you added after you made the image. That is why it`s a good practice to make frequent images if you have the space.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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