Can PartitionMagic be used this way?

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Acadia, Jan 7, 2004.

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  1. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    This may be a stupid question but I have never used PartitionMagic or any other partitioning software. I’m still in the planning stages of my next, new system, which will be only my second pc ever. Besides partitioning, can PM also be used to replace a backup software such as DriveImage? Let’s say that my new pc is a simple single-boot system with WinXP. Besides my internal hard drive I am planning on having an additional external hard drive connected via USB. Using PM, could I make a complete copy of my c:drive onto my external hard drive in a non-booting partition and then should I hose my system, could I then restore the copied partition back onto my internal hard drive as a fully restored and BOOTING c:drive. I understand that unlike DriveImage, I would not be able to call upon PM to restore a single file or folder but I am not concerned about that. I just want a simple and RELIABLE way to recover my entire system; could PM take the place of DI, Ghost, or TrueImage in this situation. Thank you.

    Acadia
     
  2. Pieter_Arntz

    Pieter_Arntz Spyware Veteran

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    Hi Acadia,

    I don't think that's a stupid question, and not only because I don't believe stupid questions exist.

    Partition Magic does have DataKeeper which is a backup utility, but I don't think that was meant to be used in the same manner as Drive Copy/Drive Image. DataKeeper was designed to replace the Windows Backup and does not (at least as far as I know) make images to completely replace a "lost" OS partition.

    Regards,

    Pieter
     
  3. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    No, Pieter, I am aware of DataKeeper and I am NOT refering to that, thanks for replying.

    Acadia
     
  4. bigc73542

    bigc73542 Retired Moderator

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    I have partition magic version 7and8 and I have made a pertition to back up data but l Don't remember seeing anyway to restore a complete os. You could install the os on the external hdd on a minimal partition and if your main os gets hosed you can replace one partiton with another. That is one way you could replace your os but unless you put copies of your important files in it and keep them up to date it would be almost like doing a restore instead of a backup. :) Oh by the way if you did it like I described you can access the second copy of your os and copy out a single file if you needed it ;)
     
  5. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    Acadia, I love your question. It is a problem that I have been wanting the answer too myself. However when i got my external hard drive, it came with image backup software and I was curious to see if that would suit my needs. It really does have some incredable abilities, and soon i forgot my original goal, which was like you stated, to be able to quickly and easily rebound from a complete disaster. Here is the deal though, without xp o/s installed how are you going to set up file structures? still, i am about to try it, i just dont think it will work.

    My plan - B? well, it's not pretty. What if I use a second internal hard drive, install xp on the new one on a bootable partition and then use the xp feature (under "perform additional tasks") called transfer files and settings. okay i transfer my files and settings. Now i have a complete semi-duplicate of the original drive including O/S

    at this point my original plan B plan was to simply unplug the second drive from the data cable and power and whisper to it "your moment to shine will come, and then you will be the system drive".

    Only by now i have been seduced by my image software, Dantz Retrospect express. I would create an additional partitions on both 1st and 2nd drives. On the first drive they are simply used as my data partitions, on the second drive they are left empty, on the external drive i keep a back up image of the first disk system partition, and I keep the data partitions backed up both as images and as duplicates. the images can be updated, and once in a while i might recopy the actually 1st disk data partitions to keep them somewhat current.

    when disaster strikes, i just throw away the first drive and instantly boot up from the second. then i go to the external and copy the contents of the data partitions into the empty data partitions on the 2nd drive. My computer drive, o/s and all is pretty much restored in 5 or 10 minutes.

    The advantage i see here is that (and this has happen 3 or 4 times) often the o/s becomes hopelessly corrupt and refuses to run this or that, and yet it has just enough life left in it for me to click "restore from backup image".

    what happens next is a miracle to me. In about two minutes (literally) anything that has screwed up is replaced by the back up image. it works so well, that when a program stops working, rather than debug it, i just restore from a backup. Note, I keep many backup sets so i can "go back in time to a better time for my computer"

    the problem? well, i have never dealt with a completely destroyed xp, and realize that that is the tricky part, and i dont see getting around having it installed on a backup drive to avoid many hours of installing hell. I do know there is a way, though...it didnt occur to me to ask how!!!
     
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