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: System image installed on another partition...backup OS install?

06 Sep 2013   #1
seligman

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 
System image installed on another partition...backup OS install?

It looks like a virus has damaged my uncle's Win7Pro 64bit system beyond repair so I'm going to have to reinstall Windows on a wiped hard drive. Unfortunately, no image was taken of the current installation before it got infected, so we'll be starting from scratch.

Here's the idea I had:
C partition (primary Windows 7 installation)
D partition (secondary Windows 7 installation, basically an image of the C partition)
E partition (documents and picture storage)

Would this be possible, and would you recommend it or not? The idea is if they ruined the C partition with a virus or malware again, they could boot to the D partition instead and immediately have a replacement backup OS configured with their same user accounts and programs that points to E for their document storage, just like the C partition. Other than not having access to newly-installed programs or files saved to the desktop, it would otherwise be equivalent.

I have the original Windows 7 Pro 64-bit disc since this is a homebuilt computer.

The kids are home schooled and rely heavily on this computer for everything school-related. I'm not always available to rescue them in a timely manner if something goes bad with the computer.

I'm looking for a solution that accomplishes two things: (1) easy for them to switch to and keeps downtime at an absolute minimum, and (2) doesn't require my immediate intervention and physical presence at their home to implement it.

I'm open to all other alternatives as well. Thanks in advance.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

06 Sep 2013   #2
theog

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

ME/XP/Vista/Win7
 
 

Quote:
Here's the idea I had:
C partition (primary Windows 7 installation)
D partition (secondary Windows 7 installation, basically an image of the C partition)
E partition (documents and picture storage)
NO, back up should not be on the same HDD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Sep 2013   #3
seligman

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by theog View Post
Quote:
Here's the idea I had:
C partition (primary Windows 7 installation)
D partition (secondary Windows 7 installation, basically an image of the C partition)
E partition (documents and picture storage)
NO, back up should not be on the same HDD.
Let me clarify my question. I would most definitely keep the image backed up on a separate external HDD somewhere.

I was asking whether I could also install the same image on the D partition now to serve as a backup OS installation if they screw up the C partition again. This may not be possible, or practical, or even a good idea for any number of reasons. I've never tried or considered it before, hence my question.

My uncle and his family do not have the technical knowledge to reinstall Windows using an image. I live 30 minutes away and our schedules don't always align for me to help them out. I'm looking for a way they can boot to a different, clean, installation of Windows -- on their own -- with minimal downtime involved.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


06 Sep 2013   #4
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

Not if you are using windows system image. Any other imaging program will do it. Or you can use a partition manager to copy the partition . Paragon does the job, ( Partition Wizard free version does also iirc.)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Sep 2013   #5
seligman

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SIW2 View Post
Not if you are using windows system image. Any other imaging program will do it. Or you can use a partition manager to copy the partition . Paragon does the job, ( Partition Wizard free version does also iirc.)
Thinking about this some more, won't there be drive letter conflicts if Windows and every installed program still believes it is installed on partition C when in fact it's on D?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Sep 2013   #6
AddRAM

Windows 7 Professional x64 Service Pack 1
 
 

Windows will not be on D, just the image you make of it.

You can teach someone how to restore windows from a disk image, it`s very easy.

If the only means you have to store a disk image on is the same drive but another partition, that`s perfectly fine, not the best practice, but perfectly fine.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Sep 2013   #7
seligman

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
Windows will not be on D, just the image you make of it.
The idea was to have Windows installed and operational on both C and D simultaneously so that if C failed they could boot D instead and continue about their business.

I never meant storing the image on D simply for storage purposes.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Sep 2013   #8
DavidE

Win 7 Pro x64 SP1, Win 7 Ult x86 SP1
 
 

A bootable (operational) secondary installation implies a dual-boot, and legally that requires 2 Win 7 licenses.
Are you willing to spend $ for another license so they can reboot "OS2", if they corrupt "OS1"?

Another option to consider is using a VM (Virtual Machine).
No matter which way you go, someone will need some "Tech training" to recover from a failed OS...
Even with a dual-boot, someone needs to know how/when/why to choose which OS to boot from.

Also consider, if malware is the problem, maybe the malware is smart enough to infect OS2 when OS1 is running...
That's one reason I always keep at least one copy of backup images offline...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Sep 2013   #9
seligman

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
A bootable (operational) secondary installation implies a dual-boot, and legally that requires 2 Win 7 licenses.
Are you willing to spend $ for another license so they can reboot "OS2", if they corrupt "OS1"?
I was thinking it would work for both since the motherboard would be identical, but your point is duly noted...

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
Another option to consider is using a VM (Virtual Machine).
No matter which way you go, someone will need some "Tech training" to recover from a failed OS...
Even with a dual-boot, someone needs to know how/when/why to choose which OS to boot from.
They could probably handle the latter with me coaching them through it, but as it was, they needed my help to access the BIOS the other night.

I'm sure most of the people reading this have been in my shoes at one time or another. I love my family but it's aggravating when they ignore my repeated advice to keep the virus and malware scanners up to date, then dump the problems in my lap later. As it stands now, I'm up to 13 hours and counting trying to rescue them from the current nightmare. Can't accomplish much when it takes ten minutes to boot into safe mode, only to be met with frequent BSOD's.

How would you reinstall Windows 7 for them if you were in my shoes? More specifically, what partitioning would you do on each drive and how would you handle the HDD images? They have a 1TB HDD and a 1TB external HDD with about 100 GB's of pictures and documents right now.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Sep 2013   #10
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 
 

The Best Practice as implied is to store a Win7 backup or other image externally. If you want a copy of it on the same HD for portability this can work but requires the disk as RAM limitations may reject doing it from F8 System Recovery Options so portability is limited by that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 System image installed on another partition...backup OS install?




Thread Tools





Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
Target partition to small for image backup
I'm using only 70 GB of the 883 GB (C): partition on my hard drive. I shrunk the partition by 100 GB to create a new 100 GB partition for an image backup of the 70 GB of system and data files. Yes, I realize that an external drive would be best, but I don't have one right now. Anyway, Win 7...
Backup and Restore
Managing a backup from a previous image (eg. deleting system image)
Hello, Before I re-imaged my laptop, I made sure to do a backup of personal files + a system image in case things went wrong. The imaging was successful, and now, the new Win7 OS recognizes the old backup as a backup from another computer (as it should). However, is it possible to manage...
Backup and Restore
Copy entire system from backup image over bootable fresh install?
Hi, I have a drive that was using PGP that has become damaged and will not boot despite trying 3 days of different fixes and repairs. I have a complete drive backup that will restore but when I try and boot after my PGP password I get 'Missing operating system'. Again I have tried decrypting...
Installation & Setup
Should I partition the drive with the Backup Image?
Hi, I have a 1TB external hard drive that I will use to make a Backup Image. I'm going to Use Symantec Ghost to make a backup Image. Should I partition the External hard drive first? I would also like to use it to store other files and folders. If so, how big should the partition with the backup...
General Discussion
Is this a general backup or system IMAGE & BACKUP
Can someone tell by these jpgs if the 6/28/10 "backup" is just a user files backup or a complete System Image Backup with user files backup included which I think is my default b/u setup now ? Thanks....TR
Backup and Restore
system image backup - how does windows pick the drives to backup?
Hi From times to times I load my disk image backup from win7 system and install the new programs/drivers i was using and save a new backup. I usually to do this by backing up my C: drive, but this turn to my surprise, windows for some reason wants to backup C and D, is it possible to pick a...
Backup and Restore

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 14:52.

Twitter Facebook Google+



Windows 7 Forums

Seven Forums Android App Seven Forums IOS App