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Windows 7: Some questions on Win7 backup

13 Oct 2016   #1

Windows 7 Professional 32 bit and 64 bit
Some questions on Win7 backup

Just got done reinstalling 7 after a hdd failure (good excuse to upgrade to ssd) and will be adding a new machine next week. So I'm looking at a new backup strategy.

Some background first. Living on a boat, I've had to come up with a somewhat unique setup, as space is at a premium. My solution was to use a USB hub (which runs the monitor, speakers & keyboard/mouse, plus an external hdd that I save all my files to). By simply changing which machine the hub is plugged into, I move between the different machines. Thus, the ext hdd is part of which every machine I am on at the time. So, what I have are 3 computers with only system files (I guess you'd call them), while all my personal files are saved to the ext hdd. (I also have a NAS and other ext hdd's)

After going through the hassle of finding all the drivers and apps necessary for a reinstall, I'd like a way to restore the system entirely (programs, drivers and all).

So, my first question is, will a Win7 disk image restore the whole system? If not, what will?

Second question is, what would be a good backup program to do continuous backups on the shared ext hdd and the user folder from each machine? (Doesn't have to be free, just continuous)

I've read a bunch of articles on backup, but they didn't really tell me what I wanted to know very clearly. Thanks for any advice or insight you can give.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Oct 2016   #2

10 Pro x64

I would use Macrium Reflect free then you can have a folder it uses to just image all your different machines into as the image file is one file on there so it will be easy to name and tell them apart in a bare metal recovery scenario.
Macrium Reflect Free

EDIT: For continuous backup of a folder structure you could use second copy (not free but very good).
Automatic backup software - secure data with Second Copy
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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