Fresh Install of OS using Empty Snapshot

Discussion in 'FirstDefense-ISR Forum' started by tradetime, May 4, 2007.

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  1. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    Given that my system is 2 1/2 ys old before I found FD-ISR, and in that time though not a prolific installer / uninstaller of software, I have installed and uninstalled my fair share, maily of security products, I would like to use the blank snapshot feature to put a clean install of XP on my box and start fresh.

    Normally this would be a mad rush over the weekend reformatting loading the OS then chasing down all the drivers etc and loading all the software and customising the setup before Monday.

    If I understand the process using FD-ISR I can do it with much less urgency since I don't reformat the disc and still have a running computer in the meantime with my current snapshots.

    Ok, what I am unsure / confused about, I installed FD on my current OS and then set about making a couple of snapshots, each of those being a copy of the primary, complete with FD. When I make an empty snapshot and jump to that I install a new OS and will have to install a "new" FD-ISR, it will not know anything about the other snapshots, since it didn't make any of them, Is it somehow able to see them, to allow me to move back to them, or is this just a way of installing a clean OS without wiping other data off your hard drive
     
  2. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    FirstDefense, the program itself, sits outside of all the Snapshots, you will not need to reinstall it. You are correct in that you can take your time with reinstalling Windows because there is no urgency, you still have your original Snapshots to continue computing with until you are ready to start using your fresh install Snapshot. Again, the program FirstDefense itself, sits outside of all the Snapshots so it can "control" everything; there will be no need to reinstall.

    Acadia
     
  3. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    OK.....damn it's somewhat confusing...can't really get my head around that, but I accept your knowledge on this. I was of the view that I was always using FD from inside a snapshot, since every snap shot is a copy of another one complete with FD.....my head hurts....o_O

    I have this image of being in a new snapshot with no way back :)
     
  4. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    From Raxco knowledgebase
    http://www.raxco.com/support/windows/kb_details.cfm?kbid=408
     
  5. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    Oops, sorry about that, obviously, I have never done a fresh install. :blink: Duh, that also makes sense or else how would you have the FD icon on the System Tray to click and use?

    Acadia
     
  6. flinchlock

    flinchlock Registered Member

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    Screen shot of "Create Empty Snapshot Wizard"
     

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  7. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    These are the instructions how to install an OS in an "Empty Snapshot".
    I never used an "Empty Snapshot", but other users have done it in practice, so it should work.
    Don't use it for any other OS, than mentioned in this thread. So NO Linux. For Linux you have to create another PARTITION.
    WARNING: Backup your complete system first as a precaution, BEFORE you start fooling around with an "Empty Snapshot".

    Create an Empty Snapshot

    To create a "new install" of a Windows operating system without disrupting your current snapshot, it is very important to
    follow the steps outlined below in the order given:

    1. Within the FirstDefense-ISR interface, select the ‘Tools' pull-down menu; select “Create Empty Snapshot”.
    Follow the instructions given in the Wizard (Select a name meaningful to you, i.e. “My Vista Build”). Click
    Finish to create the new empty snapshot. The new snapshot will then appear with the other snapshots.

    2. Right click on “My Vista Build” and select “Boot to Snapshot”; follow the prompts to boot the system.

    3. During the re-boot, you will see a message on your screen as follows: "NTLDR is missing". This is normal since
    there are no operating system files in this newly created empty snapshot.

    WARNING: If you do not see the “NTLDR is missing” message, an installation of an operating system will
    overwrite your current operating system.


    Install Windows 2000/XP/Vista

    1. Locate your Windows 2000/XP/Vista CD/DVD and place it in the CD/DVD drive. Reboot your system again. If
    you see the message, "NTLDR is missing" again, you will need to enter the system BIOS and set the boot
    sequence to boot from your CD/DVD drive first.

    2. From the Windows installer, you will be asked if you want to format the NTFS partition. Answer NO, since you
    do not want to disrupt your current Windows installation.

    WARNING: Do not format the NTFS partition... Doing so will erase all data from this partition.

    3. Proceed with the "new install" of Windows.

    Install FirstDefense-ISR

    1. After installation of the new operating system, you will not have access to the FirstDefense-ISR pre-boot menu.
    This is expected since Windows overwrites the entire boot process. Install FirstDefense-ISR to access the user
    interface and its functions.

    2. At this point, the system is available to download Service Packs, install applications, perform tests, etc.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2007
  8. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    Thanx for the post Erik, I won't be rushing into it, gotta build up to it, especially since I use no safety net (alternate recovery means)

    Yes it all looks very simple there :) My queries would be:
    1 When you have installed the new OS and the new FD-ISR, can it see the old snapshots since it didn't make them? If it can then I presume I can boot back into them.
    The new OS will be able to see all anchored files soI presume if the worst came to the worst if I exported a snapshot to an anchored folder, it would definitely be able to see this.

    2 I presume there is nothing special that needs to be anchoed just the normal personal folders?

    3 Where it says there will be no pre-boot menu, I presume this is because the new OS install will hose the MBR, does this return with the install of FD-ISR?

    4 WARNING: If you do not see the “NTLDR is missing” message, an installation of an operating system will
    overwrite your current operating system.
    I presume if you don't see the message it will be too late to do anything anyway? And why wouldn't you see that message, is there some precaution to take to make sure its there?
     
  9. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    As I said I have no practical experience with an "Empty Snapshot", but I don't think you have to worry about anything. If there was something special it would have been mentioned by Leapfrog/Raxco.
    Here are members, who have practical experience, maybe they can tell you more. :)
     
  10. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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  11. flinchlock

    flinchlock Registered Member

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    Assuming you are using FirstDefense-ISR Professional v3.20.202

    http://www.leapfrogsoftware.com/support_info/updates/

    So, NO, the MBR is not used/touched/messed with.

    Mike
     
  12. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    I understand, but your thoughts and views are always helpful, I will take some advice from Raxco before diving in also.

    I have exported a snapshot to an anchored folder, and since this computer is on a network, I will also export a copy to another computer.
    It may well turn out that the FD-ISR part is the easy part, setting this PC up under the new OS may be the harder part since I didn't set it up in the first place, which is why the idea of being able to get back to an original snapshot is so appealing.
     
  13. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    That's interesting, does that make the comment about the pre-boot screen disappearing obsolete I wonder.
     
  14. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    I don't know everything, that's why I'm a member at Wilders, because the TOTAL knowledge is spread over all members of this forum. There is no member, who knows EVERYTHING in detail. That's impossible.

    I know FDISR very well as a single home user, but I'm not familiar with a network environment.
    At work, I do a total different job, so that doesn't help me either.
    In fact I only know how to use FDISR, when FDISR is working NORMAL without technical problems, because I never had any technical problems with FDISR.

    I noticed that Peter is better than me in solving technical problems concerning FDISR and if Peter doesn't know, Leapfrog/Raxco will solve it. :)
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2007
  15. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    I suspect it does, but I haven't seen the preboot screen disappear all that much with some of the stuff that I've done, so I suspect it is obsolete.

    Note it might make a big difference if you install something else that messes with the MBR.

    Pete
     
  16. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    Houston, we are all systems go for launch......................
     
  17. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    Well from an FD-ISR point of view that exercise can be called a success, boot to empty snapshot, OS installed and FD installed all snapshots visable, didn't go quite as I expected it to go, but that was down to my mis-conceptions, it went none the less
     
  18. flinchlock

    flinchlock Registered Member

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    @tradetime Can you please elaborate on "didn't go quite as I expected it to go, but that was down to my mis-conceptions".

    Thanks, Mike
     
  19. Sam K

    Sam K Registered Member

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    There's been at least a dozen or so times that I've created an "Empty Snapshot", booted to it and then created an entire operating system from scratch.

    One of the beautiful (convenient) things about this option, is that there's no rush to build it in one day...I'm still customising three or four versions (at least six months later), knowing that within a matter of seconds,I'll be up and running with whatever snapshot I choose to boot in.

    In laymans terms, you can have a crapola system, whilst concurrently, build up a fresh system from scratch in your own time, or another way of putting it, you really can have your cake and eat it.

    BTW, don't worry too much about the "NT Loader Missing" message, as Raxco say "This is normal because there are no operating system files in this newly created snapshot" just "Locate your Windows CD and place it in the CD drive. Reboot your system again"
    All you have to remember is to set your bios to whatever CD/DVD drive you're trying to boot into...not exactly childs play, but once you've done it, it will become second nature.
     
  20. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    Sure, before booting to the empty snapshot I anchored a folder on my desktop with a snapshot of the current setup, and the FD-ISR.exe the plan being that once in the new snapshot and OS installed, the anchored folder would be present and I could install FD from it, and if there were any other unforseen probs such as the new FD not being able to see the old snapshots I would have one to hand to boot into. This however was a misconception. Once the new OS was installed there was no anchored folder to be seen, in hindsight not really suprising. However once I managed to get FD installed there was still no anchored folder which did surprise me a little, although it is available if you run a search. As soon as FD was installed it asked for a reboot an upon restart the pre-boot screen was back and all snapshots were available. All in all a fairly straight forward exercise
     
  21. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    I wouldn't even use an "Empty Snapshot" for a fresh install, because that snapshot would be created, while my computer is ON-LINE.
    I only trust one thing : clean images and clean snapshots/archives that are created OFF-LINE with trusted softwares.
    Once I go ON-LINE, I consider my computer as POSSIBLE infected.
    So I keep my clean images and clean archived snapshots separated from my daily images and daily archived snapshots.
     
  22. Sam K

    Sam K Registered Member

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    Well obviously your idea of "ON-LINE" is totally different to mine. I didn't once say that I was connected to the internet whilst I was creating my various systems, my idea of a "clean" system is exactly that, just like when you or others have to take the plunge and start all over again, it's up to each and everyone of us to protect ourselves.

    There are certain tricks/nuances with FirstDefense-ISR that a novice wouldn't get. I have been using this software in a corporate environment for the last couple of years, now that I have also been using it from a home users point of view, well you know...and if you don't, hopefully others will fill you in.
     
  23. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    That's why I keep my on-line snapshot malware-free and trouble-free with a freeze storage, that is based on an off-line installation.
    After each reboot my frozen on-line snapshot is replaced with this clean freeze storage, which keeps my computer malware-free and trouble-free forever in 100 seconds, no matter what I do wrong.
    I don't need to know what the cause of any problem was, I don't need to know how to fix it, I only have to know how to reboot my computer.
    Only one disadvantage : FDISR keeps me stupid, but I don't have to waste my time anymore on fixing problems and scanning my computer with 10 scanners to keep it malware-free.
     
  24. Bio-Hazard

    Bio-Hazard Registered Member

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    This thread caught my eye. I also been installing and uninstalling lot of stuff. This would be a nice way to do a reinstallation. I have dell machine and it came with lot of crap programs installed. I have windows cd, how can i find what drivers i need? (i am sorry if this of topic)

    Kristian
     
  25. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    If you post this question in the forum "Software and Services" you will get a faster reply, because Wilders has several members with "cleaned" Dell computers.
     
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