Acronis & True Image have major catch-ups ahead...

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by thill, Sep 3, 2004.

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  1. thill

    thill Registered Member

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    I'm a current user of TI 8/768 and TI Server 7/634 and have been for several previous versions. Like most experienced users, I have gone the route of various hardware issues and contacts with tech support who have tried to solve various problems in my installations. I'm afraid the linx kernel approach and not allowing custom drivers to be installed (as with the windows F6 technique) is going to continue to be a real problem in Windows installations. Acronis is a smaller company and seems to try to refine the product, but I'm afraid as the vast majority of post on this forum suggest...things seem to be getting worse.

    I have continued to use DriveImage Workstation and Server versions and actually run them concurrently with True Image products on some of our critical PC/Server installs; WIN2k, XP Pro (not SP2 yet), Win Server 2000 & 2003 (can never have enough backups when the grim reaper calls). Between DriveImage and TI products I have always been able to test and find a software matrix that would work on the specific machine in question. I of course keep hoping that the next maintenance release or new program version would work on all my installations.

    Last week I picked up a copy of Ghost 9.0 and the initial results are not good for Acronis and the True Image products. First I might add, I was also apprehensive about the Symantec purchase of DriveImage given I concur that Symantec tech support is non-existent (DriveImage was pretty poor also). The new product however is definitely a new release of DriveImage under the Symantec umbrella. Symantec splash screen on startup, but DI from there on. I have tested on SATA controllers including a RAID1 configuration, SCSI U320 adapters including a RAID1 and multiple external USB drives and all tests have been totally successful. In addition, in the past when I would have to use the "F6 Key" to load a special adapter driver during boot, the new version seems to have a broader range of embedded device support and I haven't had to do that once! I have also used the scheduling features with daily incremental and all has also worked flawlessly.

    So, barring the need for tech support from Symantec, or some latent problem popping up which is not currently visible, I'm starting a migration away from the Acronis product. I will of course keep an eye open for new products, updates and forums like this to keep current with the constantly changing hardware/software environment.

    A backup scheme or product that fails is the worst scenario for any computer user. I felt this feedback may offer others another avenue to investigate for their installations.
     
  2. Bubba

    Bubba Updates Team

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    Hey thill,

    Welcome to Wilders [​IMG]

    I have moved your thread from the Official Acronis Support Forum since it appears the discussion would be more suitable in this Forum as you migrat to Ghost.
     
  3. Devinco

    Devinco Registered Member

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    thill,

    Thank you for posting your experience with Ghost 9.
    Would it be possible to confirm if it is able to successfully make bootable CD images (without needing a boot disk)?
    Also, is it able to automatically span an image across multiple CDs (unlike TI where you have to presize them to fit)?
    These features worked perfectly well for me in Ghost 8, but that was when Ghost was Ghost. With Ghost 8 CD images, I tested the restore and that worked perfectly as well. I wonder if 9 will work as well and if you could restore ghost 8 images with ghost 9.
     
  4. thill

    thill Registered Member

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    Sorry, I never use CD images.

    I always store the images on a local (internal IDE, SATA or SCSI's) or a network mapped location. I also use an external USB drive for frequent failsafe Image storage. I unplug the failsafe USB Drive and put in a fire-proof storage cabinet. Ghost 9.0 doesn't seem to offer the ability to make a new boot disk, you must use the one you purchase or burn a copy of it external from the program and use the copy.

    I have found with the very reasonable cost of drives today, that using Imaging software and disc storage of the images beats the old tape approach any day.
     
  5. Devinco

    Devinco Registered Member

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    Thanks thill,

    I find it useful to have a master CD backup of when the OS was pristinely clean and another with my security suite. Once I have regular apps installed then I would image it to a hard drive like you have done. It is good to know that the USB HD feature is functional as well. I agree that tapes are no longer a practical way of backing up.

    Are you saying that Ghost 9 does not have the option to make a bootable CD image? That you would need to boot from the original Ghost 9 CD and then put in the CD image? If so, that is unfortunate, that was one of the best features of Ghost 8.
     
  6. FanJ

    FanJ Guest

    A little side-note :

    As I understand from the Symantec site, you cannot use Ghost 9 on Windows 98 SE :(

    http://www.symantec.com/sabu/ghost/ghost_personal/sys_req.html

    Quotes :

    System Requirements
    Norton Ghost 9.0

    Windows® XP Home, XP Pro, 2000 Pro SP2 or later
    Pentium 233 MHz or higher processor
    256 MB of RAM
    85 MB of available hard disk space
    Microsoft .NET Framework
    Microsoft® Internet Explorer 5.0 or later
    DVD or CD drive
     
  7. presrc

    presrc Registered Member

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    Thanks for your initial review of Ghost 9. I wonder how you can incorporate program updates to the boot disk? Ideas?
     
  8. thill

    thill Registered Member

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    Devinco,

    Since I don't use and haven't tried Imaging to CD's as I indicated, I can only ascertain an answer to your question. It appears you must use the Norton Ghost CD or a "Symantec Recovery Disk CD (available with Norton SystemWorks Premier); i.e. a bootable CD, and then insert your Image CD's. I don't take that as a serious problem since what's one more CD if you’re using that approach. My Images are 15-20GB so you can appreciate that CD's are not a viable option.

    Presrc asked about future updates. My experience with Symantec products is they don't use the Acronis approach of constant patches to fix problems, but rather major updates only. Those updates seem to be always available as new CD's from Symantec support. I seem to recall I have also received ISO images from Symantec (and also Acronis) so you could burn a new CD with the latest and greatest. As for Win98x support, it seems to me most all the software I have purchased in the last couple of years has dropped support, or cautions restricted support of older WIN98x versions. WIN2k, XP, XP SP2, and Windows Server 2000/2003 seem to be the market addressed currently.

    I also Image a new PC/Server install and save it as a Master Failsafe (USB Drive in a fireproof location) before I start application installations and then follow with a regular backup scenario.
     
  9. Devinco

    Devinco Registered Member

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    Thanks thill! :)

    Having to use one more CD is not THAT bad I guess.
     
  10. luv2bsecure

    luv2bsecure Infrequent Poster

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    Hello Devinco!

    I have a lot of experience with Drive Image (which is essentially what Ghost is now) and I know that with the last release of Drive Image, all I need is to burn the image to a disk....when restoring all I do is open DI and tell it to restore the image in the disk drive, I put the disk in, reboot, and it detects the disk and begins the restoration process. Simple and sweet. I put my image on DVD as it's around 1.7GB.

    As for spanning cd's --- I can do that with my Drive Image. It simply tells me to insert another CD and continues until completion. As I said, I now use DVD and now just the one disk. But when I was using multiple CD's, again, it was simple and sweet.

    I can only hope that Ghost 9 would have kept the simplicity of this last Drive Image that I use. It's simplicity over Ghost was the reason behind the purchase by Symantec in the first place - so I can't see why they would have changed it. But, you never know.

    Have a good weekend!
    John
    Luv2BSecure
     
  11. Devinco

    Devinco Registered Member

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    Hi John.

    Thanks for the information!
    It seems like both the previous version of Ghost and the previous version of Drive Image are able to make bootable CD/DVD images without the need for separate boot disc. It is beyond me why they would have removed this valuable feature. According to thill, it doesn't make bootable CDs anymore, that it requires a separate boot CD. It makes no sense. They already had copy protection in Ghost 8.

    I'm still going to wait and see.

    Have a great weekend! :)
     
  12. jazmaan

    jazmaan Registered Member

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    I've read all the Ghost 9 vs True Image 8 posts in this and other threads and I still don't know which one to choose! I want to be able to restore my notebook Vaio's 60 gig C:drive (boot drive with Win XP and other installed apps) from an External Firewire 250 gigHD.

    Which should I choose Ghost 9 or True Image 8?
     
  13. Lou_Dinunzio

    Lou_Dinunzio Registered Member

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  14. Devinco

    Devinco Registered Member

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    Hi jazzman,

    I think whoever you choose, you should thoroughly test out the backup and restore process BEFORE you buy. There have been way too many problems to merely trust the image verification process.

    I would seriously consider DriveSnapShot. It has lots of impressive features and you can trial it first. The trial allows full restore as well unlike ATI (from what I've heard).
    I'm still happy with Ghost 8 so I'll stick with that for a while, no need to upgrade yet.
     
  15. Tsu

    Tsu Registered Member

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    Thanks all for the feedback on GHOST 9.0

    My 2 cents... I've been evaluating it before I purchase additional copies for my users. I'm "old school" and it gives me the creeps to go with any "point-zero" version. However I have been using Norton/Symantec utilities ever since Peter Norton's 1.0 Unerase saved my bacon in the 1980's on a 5" floppy - yes, I'm that old. I can't live without Ghost and have found Symantec good on the fixes and updates. I was using Ghost before Symantec bought out the NZ operation.

    I recently discovered Acronis' suite of utilities and I'm really impressed with both TI 8.0 ( single user, not server ) and Migrate Easy. I got these to evaluate while I waited for the GHOST 9.0's release. So far they work perfectly for me except for the scheduler on TI 8 which can't wake up my PC at 3:00 a.m. to do an incrimental backup but which starts the backup as soon bring it out of sleep mode ( not hibernate ) at the touch of a mouse. Perhaps an old fashoned alarm clock on my desk would vibrate enough to move my optical mouse enough to wake up my PC to start the backup. Hello Rube Goldberg. ;)

    I found the Acronis web site lacking any knowledge base and the FAQ really lacking. Thus my reason for joining this forum. Yikes! When I went into the Acronis area to see if I could resolve the scheduler problem I couldn't believe the number of unresolve issues. I took particular offense that an Acronis moderator couldn't provide itemization of fixes as they moved from build to build saying it was to complicted of somethingo_O That's no good. Their software developers have to know exactly what they are attempting to fix before they tackle line #1 of the patch code. And, they will know exactly what they believe they fixed and what survived their QA and beta testers scrutiny. There is no way I'm randonly upgrading to a newer build in hopes of it fixing my problem only to find it may have fixed one and reintroduced another which seems to be the case for some uses of RAID arrays.

    I'm quite leary of recommending Acronis inspite of the fact that I fell in love with it while waiting for GHOST 9.0. But I also feel that I want to wait for GHOST 9.01

    Thus ends my rant... thanks all
     
  16. Paranoid2000

    Paranoid2000 Registered Member

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    Since it is possible to make full system backups of Windows 9x/ME systems using free utilities like XXCopy (with the /clone switch - see Cloning a Win 9x system disk using XXCOPY for more info), a specialised imaging utility shouldn't really be needed here. Windows 2000/XP need these, since they don't let go of their system files as easily.

    Jazzman,

    I'd second Devinco's suggestion of Drive Snapshot. It can be run from Windows or via the command prompt and takes only 140KB space (you could run it from a boot floppy, though you would need NTFS drivers also). I've used it to backup (and restore from) a Firewire external drive (the restore is most easily done by booting up a minimal Windows install from another disk or boot CD though).
     
  17. nod32_9

    nod32_9 Guest

    Almost ALL 'image' issues are caused by imaging/restoring data from WITHIN the operating system. I use DriveImage 4. It works with W98, W2K, and WXP. Just click on the DiBack32.exe icon from within Windows. The program will ask you to boot out of Windows to run the imaging software. You only need to boot with the boot discs/CD if you don't have DI 4 installed in the PC or you cannot boot into Windows. You can restore/create the image file from ANY windows PC with the boot discs/CD.

    You can create/restore the image file from another hard drive, partition (same hard drive), or removeable storage devices (no support for DVD discs).
     
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