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Windows 7: Recovery from Image or b/u disk

29 Oct 2010   #11
marsmimar

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 
 

Try doing a System Restore to a date/time just prior to uninstalling Office (not to be confused with restoring a backup or restoring a system image.)

Windows 7 Features: System Restore

If your computer is returned to it's previous condition, then I would suggest investing in a external hard drive so you can do those system backups and/or system images.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Oct 2010   #12
karlsnooks

MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by nithig View Post
Ok, thanks MJF but just one question:
are backups cumulative (ie create an initial b/up then add new files)?
or is each b/up an entire b/up?
What program did you use to make a backup?

The word backup means different things to different people and even Microsoft does not use the word consistently.

I will give the big picture of what I do for "backup".
1. I make a system image (this term also means different things to different people and software companies).
1. I make a straight backup with no compression of my data drive.

For Step 1, I use Windows 7's Backup & Restore.

For Step 2, I use Microsoft's SyncToy.

Both the image and the data backups are done to a USB drive.

Backups to a DVD are ridiculous -- slow, expensive, cumbersome and problematic (don't ever lose a single DVD in a backup set!).

I backup by data drive daily. I create a new system image on the average of once a week but that is because I do much testing and experimenting which forces me to create a system image in case something goes astray and those system image backups have saved me from great disasters.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2010   #13
mborner

Windows 7 Pro/32 Academic. Build 7600
 
 

nithig, understanding the backup utility in Windows 7 is really quite simple. First, the backup utility in Windows 7 can accomplish 4 different things.

1. It can backup
2. It can image
3. It can create a restore disk
4. It can restore data

The term backup means that the utility will backup your user data and settings. Basically, it will backup everything on your drive that you'll likely need in case of data loss. The only thing that the utility won't backup is Windows, itself, and any installed programs that you have that did not install from the Windows installation DVD.

The term image means, literally, a picture, a snapshot. An image is basically a duplicate of your hard drive. An image includes everything, including the operating system, all programs, all data, all settings, and yes, even all viruses, if they are on your drive at the time the image is made. If your system is running sluggish because of malware, creating an image, and then restoring it, accomplishes nothing. A system image even includes your partitions and drivers. After restoring a system image, it's a good idea to restore your latest backup to get your system as up to date as possible.

A restore disk does not contain any of the data on your HDD. Simply, the restore disk is used as a utility to access your image data in case Windows won't boot so that a system image can be restored. It's nothing more than a bootable utility.

Backing up data and system images should be done on an external HDD. Backing up to optical disk drives is not recommended. The only thing you need on a CD or DVD is a restore disk. All of your data goes to an external HDD.

Yes, Windows 7 does incremental backups, backing up only the data that has changed since the last backup. Obviously, the first time you run the backup utility, Windows will do a complete backup. (Don't confuse this with image) You should be aware, though, that every once in a while when you run the backup utility, Windows will do another complete backup. When this will happen is debatable, just know that each "complete" backup is called a "backup period." These backup periods will show up as date ranges under "view backups". System images will also be shown there.

You have control over how many system images Windows keeps on your HDD. It's generally good advice to keep at least the latest system image. Backup periods have to be deleted manually, again, keeping the latest backup period.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Oct 2010   #14
karlsnooks

MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit
 
 

mboner,

I think you would also benefit from reading that tutorial to fine turn your explanations.

Actually, the Win 7 Backup and Restore can backup just data, or just create vhd images of the partitions you select or any combination of these.

What gets restored depends upon the type of backup you make. Data backups are incremental and are stored in .zip file.

For laptops, external usb drives are the most common by a very large margin.

And by making a system image backup then you have backed up Windows and the programs you have installed. You can use the System Repair Disc to restore your system image. Please note that Win 7 does not make a sector-by-sector image backup. Although all of this is explained in that tutorial.


Notice that Win 7 uses the term Repair Disk and not Restore disc.

The system repair disc can do much more than just restore a system image. Here you can make one, boot from same and investigate the options.

Win 7 Backup will delete old backups if it needs space. The handling of multiple system image backups doesn't agree with MS documentation. for this point, the tutorial correctly explains the handling.

I have used Win 7 Backup and Restore system image capabilities to backup a hard drive, then insert a new hard drive and restore to the new drive from the backup. Works great. Useful to remember if you ever consider either using a SSD or new hard drive.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2010   #15
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by nithig View Post
Ok, thanks MJF but just one question:
are backups cumulative (ie create an initial b/up then add new files)?
or is each b/up an entire b/up?
You can see my feedback and some from others.
I think you now have to put the time into reading the tutorials as well as the followup questions that trail the tutorials. Plus your own hands on use of the tools.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2010   #16
mborner

Windows 7 Pro/32 Academic. Build 7600
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by karlsnooks View Post
mboner,

I think you would also benefit from reading that tutorial to fine turn your explanations.

Actually, the Win 7 Backup and Restore can backup just data, or just create vhd images of the partitions you select or any combination of these.

What gets restored depends upon the type of backup you make. Data backups are incremental and are stored in .zip file.

For laptops, external usb drives are the most common by a very large margin.

And by making a system image backup then you have backed up Windows and the programs you have installed. You can use the System Repair Disc to restore your system image. Please note that Win 7 does not make a sector-by-sector image backup. Although all of this is explained in that tutorial.


Notice that Win 7 uses the term Repair Disk and not Restore disc.

The system repair disc can do much more than just restore a system image. Here you can make one, boot from same and investigate the options.

Win 7 Backup will delete old backups if it needs space. The handling of multiple system image backups doesn't agree with MS documentation. for this point, the tutorial correctly explains the handling.

I have used Win 7 Backup and Restore system image capabilities to backup a hard drive, then insert a new hard drive and restore to the new drive from the backup. Works great. Useful to remember if you ever consider either using a SSD or new hard drive.
Yes, I've read the tutorial, and several other sources, plus my own personal experiences. I understand the Windows 7 backup utility pretty well. My post may have been a little simplistic in nature as I just wanted to make it clear to the OP, the differences between the terms "image" and "backup", as he seemed to be struggling with the definition. Sure, there are many, many, more details involved in Windows 7 backup but it wasn't my intent to exploit the full capabilities of Windows 7 backup. Your entire post is correct, although, perhaps a bit daunting for the OP.
Cheers.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2010   #17
DeaconFrost

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

So many things in the first post have me scratching my head...so hopefull we can figure them out for clarity's sake. Nothing bugs me more than blaming MS for something that isn't their doing. Anyway...if you "gotta love MS", and you use Open Office...I have one word for you: Linux.

First, it sounds like you have a prebuilt, OEM system. If the problem is that bad, why not roll back using the recovery discs? I've also removed the Office trials from several OEM systems, without any issues, using the standard Programs and Features applet. Not once have I had an issue, nor did it remove .NET either. Sounds like you either clicked the wrong thing, or you bought a misconfigured system. If it was my system, I'd be getting a disc and doing a clean install.

Dial up? In 2010? Seriously?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2010   #18
nithig

Windows 7 Pro 64bit SP1
 
 

Deacon Frost wrote
Quote:
why not roll back using the recovery discs? I've also removed the Office trials from several OEM systems
well Deacon that sounds good ... what does it mean (btw you're right it's a pre-installed system)?

Quote:
blaming MS for something that isn't their doing
I do not want a 60 day trial vers of Office.
So putting it on the system and making it so difficult to remove ... we'll I'd say that is MS's doing, wouldn't you?


Quote:
Dial up? In 2010? Seriously?
Parts of Australia where anything else is just too prohibitive
financially. There is a NBN (National Broadband Network) underway but there are many clouds mostly due to the enormous cost of laying optic cable everywhere.
__________________________________

To all the other contributers ... thanks heaps.
Ok to summarise: I've ditched the disks
Now I've got a portable HDD
The whole b/up and Image process is now much clearer to me.

So all I need to do is find a way to get .NET back and make an Image onto the external HDD.

btw tried a Restore and it won't do it. First claimed an anti vir was blocking so turned that off and tried
again - then it stated that there was a file it couldn't access.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2010   #19
karlsnooks

MS Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit
 
 

Sounds like progress.

Which backup software are you using?

What are you trying to backup?

What anti-virus software do you use?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Oct 2010   #20
nithig

Windows 7 Pro 64bit SP1
 
 

Quote:
Which backup software are you using?

What are you trying to backup?

What anti-virus software do you use?
- The one which comes with Win 7 (can you recommend alternatives?)

- First I would like a Image of the whole system then b/up files
(before this is done want to get .Net back on ...may go to a computer shop and ask if it can be put
onto a flash drive for me).

- Zone Alarm (but have tried Restore with ZA off - makes no diff.)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Recovery from Image or b/u disk




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