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Windows 7: Image your system with free Macrium

15 Jul 2014   #1661
Electron

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Thanks essenbe and whs for the help. When I mentioned buying another 1 TB internal disk, that would be the potential restore disk should my current disk drive ever fail.

My concern is not storing the image file somewhere but rather restoring it and then booting from it.

At present I am storing images on an external 500 GB Seagate backup drive.

I believe essenbe is saying that it is OK as long as the new boot disk is larger than the restored image file. It would then boot up and work like the original disk.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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16 Jul 2014   #1662
kado897

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Service Pack 1
 
 

Yes that is correct.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2014   #1663
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Just make sure that you do not forget to image/restore the 100MB system partition. You need that plus the C partition for an operational system.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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16 Jul 2014   #1664
kado897

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Service Pack 1
 
 

A good point.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2014   #1665
Electron

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Thanks all again for the help. The more I think about Imaging the more complex it seems.

If you looked at one of our Windows 7 disks, the first 70 GB might be mostly filled up followed by empty space and then more files which are often restore points, system files, or new data. Let's assume for the moment that all data is below the 500 GB point on a 1 TB disk.

That empty space in the first half of the disk is not actually stored in the Image file, but I assume it reappears in the restored image. If the image is written to a 500 GB disk, everything would fit but with little empty space after the last files on disk.

I believe everyone is stating that Macrium would image a 1 TB disk to 500 GB disk in this way and that it would boot and run the same.

But aren't there other factors such as the MBR? The MBR knows about things like partition size so I wonder if Macrium has to make changes to the MBR. Lastly, Windows usually detects all hardware changes so I wonder how that impacts the first boot.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2014   #1666
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

1) Restore image to Same machine;

Windows will be fine if restored to the same or different HD on the same machine.
All imaging programs will take care of the details. It will boot up fine on the same machine.

2) Restore image to different machine:

You might have trouble restoring to machine with a different motherboard.
If you transfer to different machine/motherboard, most imaging programs have a function to cope with that - but only in the paid versions as a rule. You will also need to reactivate windows, which sometimes means calling MS on a toll free number to get them to do it for you. Type slui 4 at cmd prompt to get the toll free number.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2014   #1667
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ken75 View Post
Thanks all again for the help. The more I think about Imaging the more complex it seems.

If you looked at one of our Windows 7 disks, the first 70 GB might be mostly filled up followed by empty space and then more files which are often restore points, system files, or new data. Let's assume for the moment that all data is below the 500 GB point on a 1 TB disk.

That empty space in the first half of the disk is not actually stored in the Image file, but I assume it reappears in the restored image. If the image is written to a 500 GB disk, everything would fit but with little empty space after the last files on disk.

I believe everyone is stating that Macrium would image a 1 TB disk to 500 GB disk in this way and that it would boot and run the same.

But aren't there other factors such as the MBR? The MBR knows about things like partition size so I wonder if Macrium has to make changes to the MBR. Lastly, Windows usually detects all hardware changes so I wonder how that impacts the first boot.
You are complicating your life. Why don't you just make an image and let Macrium take care of the rest. It has worked thousands of time - so why wouldn't it work for you.

All you need to know is that the image is appr. 65% of all data in your C partition (OS, system generated data, your own data - it does not matter) and that you can restore the image where the full data content fits (not the 65%). All other settings like MBR etc. are automatically taken care of during the restore. You don't worry about the MBR during the installation of the OS - do you ??
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2014   #1668
Electron

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Thanks once again, and you're right that I should just use the program and forget the fine details of what really goes on.

Unfortunately, I worked in Engineering for many years and really like to understand as much as I can. This is especially true in this case where I might be imaging onto a disk that is smaller than the original.

I've heard mention that the paid versions of the various imaging programs can work with different sized disks where the unpaid versions might not. I know that some of that might involve changes in partition sizes but one also wonders about the MBR.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2014   #1669
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Macrium Reflect will restore an image to a smaller disk as long as the destination disk is larger than the original data amount in the image. Example: You image a 1TB disk that has 350GB of data on it. You will be able to restore that image to a smaller disk as long as that disk has room for at least 350GB of data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jul 2014   #1670
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Free Macrium can work with different size disks - since the last releases. And the MBR is dealt with at the recovery stage - similar to an original installation. You are reading too much into it. It is straight forward.

I suggest you study what happens between the MBR > active partition > bootmgr > OS. Maybe then you will see that this is no rocket science.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Image your system with free Macrium




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