Bootable CD Restore vs Windows Restore

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by Phil B., Jul 4, 2005.

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  1. Phil B.

    Phil B. Registered Member

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    I used 889 to create a full backup of the 5 partitions (120GB) on my internal drive to an external USB drive(200GB). Took about 22-23 minutes for 19.8GB of data.

    Did a Bootable CD (created in 889) restore of one partition of 3.3GB of data. This took 46 minutes.

    Did a windows restore of the same partition which took 3 minutes.

    Again everything was done with build 889.

    Does the bootable restore take that much longer than the windows restore or is something wrong?

    Dell 4600 2.8GHz
    512 MB RAM
    120 GB Internal hard drive
    200 GB USB External hard drive, 7200RPM, 8 MB Cache

    Phil
     
  2. pjb024

    pjb024 Registered Member

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    The bootable CD uses standard Linux drivers that work but are not optimised for your specific hardware configuration. This is not to say that Linux is inferior to windows, quite the contrary many would say, but the drivers on the bootable CD are not specific to your hardware while the windows drivers are. Windows knows what chipset your motherboard uses etc when the drivers are installed and therefore the drivers can optimise according to hardware configuration. The creation of a Bootable CD does not involve detailed analasis of hardware configuration, it is simply a 'safe' set of drivers that will work for most hardware.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2005
  3. Phil B.

    Phil B. Registered Member

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    pjb024,

    Thanks for the excellent explaination of why the bootable restore took longer.

    Also reinstalled 826 and ran both restores using a 826 bootable restore and the windows restore. Results were the same as in the 889 build. Reinstalled 889.

    Just a quick question: When Ti creates the bootable CD why doesn't it use the drivers that windows uses?

    Again, thanks for the explaination.

    Phil :)
     
  4. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hi Phil,

    The bootable rescue CD is wholly Linux based, which means that the Windows drivers are totally incompatible.

    You could try a "Safe" version of the rescue CD. This uses a combination of DOS and your motherboard's BIOS routines to access the hardware. Depending on the make and model of your motherboard, you may be lucky and find that the Safe rescue CD can detect your external USB HD and restore an image faster than the "Full" version rescue CD.

    Regards
     
  5. pjb024

    pjb024 Registered Member

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    Hello Phil

    When you create a Bootable Rescue CD you are getting a bootable CD that contains a Linux environment with some basic drivers that will work for a wide variety of hardware. The TI process that creates this CD for you doesn't analyse your hardware and the resultant CD is the same for you as it is for other users who may have very different hardware to yours.

    It only takes a couple of minutes to create a Bootable Rescue CD but it takes anything from 30 minutes to more than an hour (depending on hardware configuration) for windows to enumerate your hardware and install correct drivers. I don't think most Acronis customers would be happy to wait that long for a Bootable Rescue CD to be made and they would be demanding a more basic 'rescue' system that does the job albeit not as efficiently as full blown windows environment. The current rescue CD utilises an environment that is similar in concept to Windows Safe Mode. The priority is to have something that works reliably rather than most efficiently.

    If you want to experiment and create a more optimized environment then I recommend that you read about the Plug-in for BARTPE. You can read about it here ... http://www.acronis.com/enterprise/support/bartpe/

    Hope this gives you more insight into the general philosophy of TI.

    Good luck

    Paul
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2005
  6. Phil B.

    Phil B. Registered Member

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    Thanks to all who responded. I now have a much better understanding how TI works. If I ever have to do a full restore, 4-6 hours (19.5 GB), it is much better than 4-6 days to reinstall everything if I had a HD problem.

    Again, thanks for the help.

    Phil B.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2005
  7. pvsurfer

    pvsurfer Registered Member

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    Good question and good answers! While on this subject, it would seem to me that image creation and restoration would be more reliable using the TI Boot CD for both functions. I believe this because by booting into Linux (as the CD does), Windows' system files are not open, whereas many are surely open when executing either create or restore from within Windows.

    Does my conclusion 'hold water', or not? o_O
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2005
  8. pjb024

    pjb024 Registered Member

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    It does not matter that Windows system files are open during backup as that in itself will not affect the integrity of anything backed up. However, it is still possible to run a backup at an inappropriate moment. Consider a scenario where a scheduled backup starts while you are in the middle of running an installation program to install a new application. Following a restoration of the disk or partition referencing that application you could well find that the 'semi installed' application is not in a working state. Of course that scenario doesn't apply if you backup using the Acronis Recovery CD as nothing can be running on the PC other than Acronis TI.

    The downside to running Acronis effectively offline is, as has been noted earlier, that there is a performance hit and that could be significant. On the positive side, running offline guarantees integrity of what is being backed up.

    An alternative, if you are worried about system integrity during backup, is to run TI under Windows, so getting the benefit of best performance, but to schedule the backup to take place when your PC is first booted up. Similarly it can be scheduled to take place when the PC closes down but I would prefer to run a backup on a freshly booted system rather than one that has been running applications.

    In a restore situation you may have no choice but to use the Acronis Rescue CD if it is your system partition that is damaged.

    You make a good point and it illustrates that you have to give some thought to making backups and choosing how and when to run TI.
     
  9. pvsurfer

    pvsurfer Registered Member

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    pjb024~ Thanks for your very informative reply! From what you say, it seems my conclusion (re: Windows' open files adversely affecting image-creation) not only doesn't hold water, apparently, it's all wet. ;) ~pv
     
  10. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Hi PV,

    This <Acronis technical article> provides a good insight into how TI achieves live imaging. It should be noted that, after TI takes its "snapshot", any changes written to the source drive will not be included in that particular image.

    Regards
     
  11. Menorcaman

    Menorcaman Retired Moderator

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    Yes, the "Full" version of the recovery CD is Linux based whilst the "Safe" version utilises a combination of DOS and your motherboard's BIOS routines. However, if the Full or Safe rescue CD fails to detect your hard disk controller chipsets then there is a True Image PE Plugin available from Acronis Support.

    Not all users have experienced a drop off in performance (myself for example). It very much depends whether the Linux device drivers contained on Build 889's bootable rescue CD are optimized for your particular hardware.

    Regards
     
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