Free image disk app?

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by L815, Jun 17, 2008.

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  1. L815

    L815 Guest

    Are there any free applications which would make a copy of my current Vista install which I can later burn onto a disk and install it as I would a recovery disk?

    Everytime I format my Vista partition I have to re-download a bunch of drivers and do a few tweaks which take much time to do. I would like to install a fresh Vista version, install all the drivers, and make a disk which I can then use as the installer from there on.

    Please don't suggest Vlite, it's not what I'm looking for.
     
  2. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    Sorry wrong software.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2008
  3. MrBrian

    MrBrian Registered Member

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  4. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    The best freeware is DriveImage XML (I never failed with this one).

    Another opensource and very nice imaging software is SelfImage.

    Both need to be run from a PE enviroment for the restoration of the image.
    If you do not Know and do not want to learn how to build a winPe,BartPE,etc. CD; just download UBCD4Win. It will help you creating the cd (very easy to use) and best of all have both of them already included in the package.;)
     
  5. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Erik, why are you posting about Shadowprotect. It isn't free. Please read the subject.
     
  6. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

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    Another free that I forgot to mention is Easeus Disk Copy.

    I have not tried it but if it performs as good as their other product, Partition Table Doctor V3.5, it will become a must-have freeware. :)
     
  7. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    I know, it's already removed, I only wanted to explain how I do it, it wasn't ment as a recommendation. Don't you never make mistakes ?
     
  8. L815

    L815 Guest

    Some great responses, thanks :D
    I forgot to mention this question on the original post.

    With any of the softwares, where they say "image a partition", saying a partition is 230GB, would it image the entire 230GB or only the amount that is taken up so far?
     
  9. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    That depends. A ot of imaging software has options for both. If you want to backup the entire 230GB look for an option that says someething along the lines of "backup free space." However, usually that option is disabled by default.
     
  10. OldMX

    OldMX Registered Member

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  11. L815

    L815 Guest

    I don't want to copy the entire partition. I just want the goods :p
    But, so far my HDD has 30GB used up, and I'm going to assume that's a lot of DVD's T-T
     
  12. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    DVD or DVD-DL? Also, the product can have a big difference too. Fotr instance, Acronis True Image has the best compression I've seen for an imaging program.
     
  13. L815

    L815 Guest

    I'm not sure what DVD-DL is, so I am going to say DVD. Can DVD-RW also be used? I have a few of those laying around that I wouldn't mind sparing at all.
     
  14. yankinNcrankin

    yankinNcrankin Registered Member

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    I tried and tested all of the above ATI was the only program that couldn't work right on my DELL box. Imo though PING wins hands down on speed in copying and restoring, however it does need to load its environment which may take a bit longer than the above mentioned programs, but no installation to the OS is needed. Check it out here http://ping.windowsdream.com/ping/download.html
    :) This program restores my system so exact to the state it was in when I made the copy, that I don't even have to defrag after a complete system restore, unlike Ghost 2003 which is my favorite, after restoring with ghost I need to delete a VIRT.part data file and defrag my system a bit since it don't put everything back on the disc exactly like PING does.
     
  15. Espresso

    Espresso Registered Member

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    Don't waste your time burning to dvds. One critical error with the disc and the image is toast. Add a second hard drive or get an external USB/Firewire drive.
     
  16. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    I have the complete oppopsite approach. I prefer optical disks to external harddrives, which rely on mechanical parts to store data. Those parts can break and then your SOL. When using optical disks, just remember to verify the disc after burning.
     
  17. L815

    L815 Guest

    The only extra HDD I have are IDEs and since this is a laptop, I don't have an easy way to hook it up without buying a converter.

    PING sounds very good. I'll have to look into it. I have 30GB used up for this partition, what would you estimate the size of the image would be? The same or bigger/smaller?
     
  18. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    n8

    I think your logic here is a bit flawed. The odds of one of several DVD's going bad is much higher then a quality hard drive failing.

    Pete
     
  19. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    Agreed. Now you know why it's so importan tfor me to keep everything on a single optical disc.
     
  20. MrBrian

    MrBrian Registered Member

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    Keep current backup on hard drive if possible. Burn 2 DVD copies of backups. Take one set to a different location. Now you have both redundancy and a spare set in case of a local disaster.
     
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