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Windows 7: Data or Boot DVD?

16 Nov 2011   #1

Windows 7 Pro x64
Data or Boot DVD?

I'm making a back-up DVD for Windows 7 installation. Do I choose Create data DVD or Boot DVD? What's the difference, since they will hold the same files.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Nov 2011   #2

Windows 7 Pro x64 SP1

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by jimlau View Post
I'm making a back-up DVD for Windows 7 installation. Do I choose Create data DVD or Boot DVD? What's the difference, since they will hold the same files.
welcome Jimlau to the windows 7 forums.

the main difference between a data dvd and boot dvd is that a boot dvd
can boot your computer from your dvd drive.

Most backup programs ask you to create a boot dvd so that if your system goes into a funk, you can boot the dvd and restore your files.

Microsoft and other imaging programs as well as the manufacturers recovery programs all give you the option (some demand it) to create a boot dvd so that you can restore the image or recovery disks.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Nov 2011   #3

Windows 7 Pro x64

thanks for the reply.

i still don't quite understand, as the dvd will have the exact same files and folders either way. i'm using BurnAware and they prompt whether i want a boot or data dvd. same files, so i don't get it. does a dvd called a boot 1 somehow auto run or something?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

16 Nov 2011   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit

In Burnaware Free, Make ISO and then Burn Image.

Most burning software have a straight "Copy Disc" feature to make a 1:1 copy of any non copy-protected disk. I do not find one in Burn Aware. So the above process should get you through irrespective of it being a data disk or a bootable disk.

( I always make an ISO and back it up to an external drive. The bootable ISOs needed are stashed into a multiboot pendrive and is always ready to be deployed)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Nov 2011   #5

Windows 7 Professional SP1 32-bit

Your original Windows DVD contains a small boot image that's not part of the visible filesystem, but it's what makes the disc bootable.

If you simply copy all the files on the DVD and write them to a new disc, the boot sector will be missing.

While you can use whichever option your burning software offers you to create a bootable disc from scratch, it would be safer (and more straightforward) to simply make a 1:1 copy as jumanji explained.

If you make an .iso image of a bootable CD or DVD, that .iso will contain the boot image as well and reproduce another bootable disc when written back to a blank CD/DVD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Data or Boot DVD?

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