Can True Image read sector-by-sector a partition and save it that way (i.e., a physical image)? Or does it only save a logical image by having to read through the file system of the OS? I'd like to find out if True Image can save a physical image. That means: - No OS is running in the system that was started from the hard drive or any partitions within it. Only the boot media's OS is running and is NOT associated or dependent on *anything* in any of the hard drive's partitions. - The physical image program doesn't give a gnat's fart about what OS is installed because that OS is *never* loaded during the image save process. - The physical image program doesn't care what file system is used (FAT, NTFS, HPFS, Mac, whatever) because it doesn't use any OS, even its own on bootup, to read through that file system. That means ALL file systems are supported because NO file system is ever used. The image program simply reads every byte in a sector and saves a [compressed] record on the sector(s). Compression may extend across multiple sectors to provide maximum compression, like for unused sectors. Only sectors within a partition are saved, not those that are unallocated (but may also be an option to include unallocated sectors). The image program, like the BIOS, merely reads the partition table from the MBR to find the offset to a partition and its length and saves those sectors, hopefully compressed to reduce the number of media or free space needed for the backup device. From I read of True Image's imaging, it seems dependent on the OS, the file system, and perhaps even what is resident in memory for other processes. I'd like to make exact physical images of my partitions (or the entire drive if only 1 partition is present or include all partitions in the saved image if there is more than 1 partition). Obviously I would have to use bootable media and an OS runs from there to load and execute the imaging program, but it never delves into what OS or file system is used within the hard drive's partition because it reads that partition sector-by-sector (i.e., at a hardware level rather than through an OS). I wouldn't matter which OS is in a partition, which file system was used, if it was corrupted, if it was empty, if it was a hidden partition only containing data and there are no OS partitions anywhere in the host. It just reads and saves the sectors within a partition. I like many of the features of Acronis. It seems oriented as a logical imaging program. Does it also have a component that permits using it only as a *physical* imaging program? This might similar to many drive-to-drive cloning programs but instead an image file is saved for later restore, and with compression the image would be smaller than having to clone the drive to another drive, and I would get more choices on what type of media on which to store the images. ATI has its Drive Clone tool but that is described as cloning drives, not for saving physical images of the drive, and cloning probably won't use compression because it isn't saving an image file but instead writing the non-compressed bytes to another drive or partition. There are lots of nifty features available in ATI for logical imaging, but I also require a physical imager. Can I use their Drive Clone tool to save an image rather than just write to another drive to clone to it, and can that image be compressed, and can it be used for restores? Oh, one more question, is the first backup media, like for CD-R or DVD-R, bootable and loads the restore program? That way, I can just use the backup media to perform a restore rather than hunt around or remember to lug along the installation media or separate bootable discs.