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Windows 7: Backup - Make a "Create Incremental Backup" Shortcut

25 Feb 2015   #10
huskertsunami

Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Hmm, I am not really a friend of incrementals. They are much more difficult to manage than full images. Today you can buy a 2TB USB3 external disk for $69, so space should not be a real argument. And time neither because you can continue working whilst the image is being written.

Today I setup Macrium for a friend of my wife. We took the first image of all partitions (but not the recovery partition) of this new 8.1 system. It took exactly 4.4 minutes. Write speeds hovered between 1.1 and 1.2Gb/sec. And that on a $299 desktop upgraded with a $60 SSD.

But if you want to make the differential images as suggested by Shawn, you can make your first image with this command:

wbadmin start backup -backupTarget:X: -include:C: -AllCritical -quiet

You have to replace "X" with the volume letter of your backup device. All partitions relevant for proper operations will be includded (AllCritical).
Thanks for the input. However, if I wanted to do monthly backups I think a full backup will still fill up the 2 TB disk within the year if I was steadfast on maintaining the archive by not deleting older backups.

Anyway, is the WIN7 BACKUP utility that fickle? Also, does the tool which Shawn posted utilize the command you included above?

Thanks


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Feb 2015   #11
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Nah, a 2TB disk goes a long way. I have a very 'old' installation with a LOT of programs and my images are around 21GBs. I think you would never keep enough images to fill that 2TB disk.

Win7 imaging is touchy. It has very little function and often fails to recover. If you are careful, I guess it is OK. But Macrium is a lot more rugged and it takes a lot to make it fail. In fact I am unaware of a single case where it failed.

The other question I cannot answer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Feb 2015   #12
huskertsunami

Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Nah, a 2TB disk goes a long way. I have a very 'old' installation with a LOT of programs and my images are around 21GBs. I think you would never keep enough images to fill that 2TB disk.

Win7 imaging is touchy. It has very little function and often fails to recover. If you are careful, I guess it is OK. But Macrium is a lot more rugged and it takes a lot to make it fail. In fact I am unaware of a single case where it failed.

The other question I cannot answer.
Yeh, I actually tried MACRIUM on an old XP laptop since XP did not have a native imaging utility. I created the system image & restored it without much difficulty. The other thing is that it was fast going both ways, unlike the WIN7 utility.

One would think that a 3rd party software which is developed to handle different types of operating systems would be robust, but would not outperform the native utilities. In other words, I would expect that the WIN7 BACKUP utility which is customized specifically for WIN7 systems would not work on other systems, but certainly would NOT FAIL on a WIN7 system. or be outperformed by a 3rd party package.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2015   #13
huskertsunami

Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Win7 imaging is touchy. It has very little function and often fails to recover. If you are careful, I guess it is OK. But Macrium is a lot more rugged and it takes a lot to make it fail. In fact I am unaware of a single case where it failed.
Well, I did get WIN7 to successfully back up incrementally & then I did a restore to verify the backup based on the statement above from WHS. It did restore, but I noticed it restored everything, even directories which I either moved to a new location or deleted. For example, I relocated my antivirus installer files & logs prior to my last incremental backup, and the restored image contains that subdirectory in both the old location & the new.

Will 3rd party software such a MACRIUM or AOMEI do the same thing or are they more ASTUTE than WIN7?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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28 Feb 2015   #14
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

If you deleted or moved stuff after the image was taken, then a restore of that image will bring the stuff back. A restore will always give you the state of your system from the time when the image was taken. That is common to all imaging programs.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2015   #15
huskertsunami

Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
If you deleted or moved stuff after the image was taken, then a restore of that image will bring the stuff back. A restore will always give you the state of your system from the time when the image was taken. That is common to all imaging programs.
Let me clarify. I first did a full backup in order to be able to do an incremental backup. After I did the full backup I then moved & deleted various subdirectories, and then did an incremental backup with the anticipation that the incremental backup would recognize this.

When I did the restoration I selected the incremental backup file set, not the full backup set, and after the restore process the restored image contains the moved subdirectory in both the old & new locations as well as the deleted subdirectories.

This was done via WIN7 BACKUP & RESTORE utility. So it appears that utility restores everything whether moved or deleted. So does MACRIUM & AOMEI packages behave in the same fashion or are they more sophisticated to recognize these types of changes?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2015   #16
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

That is strange. Even Windows imaging should not have restored the deleted and moved items when you restored from the incremental.

I do not know how Macrium or Aomei handle that in case if incrementals that I never use - for good reasons. I only use the free Macrium which does not have incrementals and AOMEI gave me too much trouble. So I deleted it.

In any case - I really recommend to make only full backups. They are much easier to manage and more reliable.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2015   #17
huskertsunami

Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
That is strange. Even Windows imaging should not have restored the deleted and moved items when you restored from the incremental.

I do not know how Macrium or Aomei handle that in case if incrementals that I never use - for good reasons. I only use the free Macrium which does not have incrementals and AOMEI gave me too much trouble. So I deleted it.

In any case - I really recommend to make only full backups. They are much easier to manage and more reliable.
I guess I now understand why you avoid incremental backups. Does Shawn have any insight on this matter?

In fact I did an experiment with of a single USER directories that way the backup & restore iteration times are shorter. I did a full backup & afterwards shuffled subdirectories around to different locations & then did an incremental backup. Restoring from the incremental backup results in subdirectories located in old & both locations.

Maybe someone can duplicate this behavior & come up with some resolution? Meanwhile, I will experiment with AOMEI to see what it does.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2015   #18
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

As I said, if you go with incrementals you are looking for trouble. Make full images, that's safe. And use the free Macrium. That has proven since years to be the most reliable plus it has a lot of options and is fast. Yesterday I made a full system image (all partitions) of a new W8.1 installation in 4.4 minutes.

Imaging with free Macrium
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Mar 2015   #19
huskertsunami

Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
As I said, if you go with incrementals you are looking for trouble. Make full images, that's safe. And use the free Macrium. That has proven since years to be the most reliable plus it has a lot of options and is fast. Yesterday I made a full system image (all partitions) of a new W8.1 installation in 4.4 minutes.

Imaging with free Macrium
WHS has given his advice & I think I understand why, but I experimented with AOMEI & it did recognize that I moved subdirectories & restored them to the locations which I specified prior to doing the INCREMENTAL backup. Why does the WIN7 utility not do this?

AOMEI was suggested by BRINK. It would be nice if he weighed in with his opinion & perhaps elaborate on why INCREMENTAL backups are trouble.
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