How Can I Backup My "C" Windows Drive To My External USB Drive?

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by budachild, May 1, 2008.

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  1. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    :cool: Good evening ladies and gentlemen,


    I'm a new user of Acronis True Image Home v10. I'd like to know how to complete the only procedure I got it for before installing the program. You see there is no security in this ever changing world. I have no guarantee that my main Windows drive will run perfect for all of it's days. So I snagged a copy of Acronis to provide myself with a some future security in case things ever go haywire on my Windows drive.

    What I want to do is basically create an exact copy of my "C" windows drive to my external 500GB Seagate USB hard drive using Acronis True Image Home v10. Before I go on I should mention that my "C" windows drive is on an 80GB hard drive which is actually partitioned into two halves [ie: a "C" drive partition for windows which is 20GB in size, and an "E" drive partition for all of my downloads which is 55Gb in size]. But remember all I want to clone for backup purposes is my "C" windows drive, not my "E" drive which I use for needless downloads.


    So I basically just want to know how to accomplish the following:

    1. How to create a backup of my "C" drive to my external 500GB USB drive using Acronis True Image Home v10.

    2. How I can restore my "C" drive from my external hard drive in the event that my "C" drive crashes or becomes unstable, & do so on the right internal drive partition [ie: restoring back to "C" drive - not "E" drive].

    3. Ok now let's say my 80GB internal hard drive dies completely, and the only option I have is to purchase another 80GB hard drive or a much larger hard drive. I choose one, take the new hard drive home, install it on my motherboard [same pc as original dead drive], & partition it into two halves [one half being the exact same size as my original "C" Windows partition on my dead drive]. Will I be able to restore a backup copy of my "C" drive from my external 500GB USB drive, to the brand new hard drive partition? I ask because I'm not sure if Windows XP will take that as some sort of massive hardware change which would require reactivation of Windows XP. & also to basically know if a Acronis image of my dead "C" drive would work on an exact hard drive partition within a new drive. I need to know because I had a drive die on my computer a year ago so I can't take that kind of risk which only amounts to total reinstallation of O/S and software again on a new drive.


    Please let me know the answers a la "step by step"... Hehehehehe :argh:



    - Thank You




    P.s.
    This is my first time switching from Norton Ghost which didn't even install for me. & their support + forums suck... I averaged 1 reply per month with them. Not to mention auto reply emails. It would also be good for you to know that I have no knowledge or clue on how to use Acronis, but I am a pc tech so I'll get the hand of it if you give me the steps one by one.
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2008
  2. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    You can create a backup file that contains the image of an entire harddisk or just a partition. You can create the backup on a usb drive. Since the backup only contains the sectors necessary to restore the disk/partition (for example, it doesn't contain the hibernation of page files since those are recreated by windows when the restored drive is rebooted), the backup is usually much smaller than the source drive size. Provided there is room on the target drive for more backup files, you can store many of them there, having a histopry of images that you can restore.

    Diff backup programs (ATI, Paragon, shadowProtect, etc.) have problems with some hardware set ups but they don't all have probs with the same hardware, so take advantage of the free trials offered before you buy and see what works on your machine(s) and has the features you want. And be sure to read the user guide(s). ;-)

    Since you can't restore system files while they are in use -- and you can't boot a system drive when the drive has crashed, these progs all have bootCDs that you can use to restore a disk/partition. Most use linux as the operating system onthe bootCD--ShadowProtect uses VistaPE..
    good luck.
     
  3. DwnNdrty

    DwnNdrty Registered Member

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    And just to add that True Image uses the terms Clone and Backup (or Image) for two different processes. Be clear in your mind which is which. In the situation you describe, you want the Backup feature, not Clone.
     
  4. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    Thank you for the replies! :argh:

    I didn't get some sort of boot cd with Acronis True Image Home v10. I haven't installed it yet either. I would assume that the disc is made after the program is installed no? Creating some sort of iso file to burno_O?

    My first question wasn't really answered. So can someone still walk me through each step it takes to create a backup image of my "C" windows drive and save the backup image to my external usb drive for safe keeping?


    Thanks
     
  5. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    Check my guides listed on line 2 of my signature below.
     
  6. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    Wow hey thanks for the guide tip! But let's say I want to recover a drive using an image I stored on an external usb drive. How do I connect the usb drive to use it with the boot rescue cd? Do I just connect my external usb drive containing the image to my rear usb ports, turn on my pc, slip in the rescue disc quickly and wait for it to load? I mean I have a Segate Free Agent 500GB external usb drive, and well I don't want to ruin it. How will my bios or pc know to turn it on during a rescue disc operation with Acronis? I'd just like to know how to do that procedure of connecting my external drive properly, and also disconnecting it properly after I'm done restoring an image to my internal drive.
     
  7. DwnNdrty

    DwnNdrty Registered Member

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    The external drive will not be ruined simply by connecting it to the computer and then powering on the computer. In fact the external must be connected and powered before the True Image cd starts to boot.
     
  8. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    I just installed Acronis True Image Home 10... During setup I chose to only install Acronis for the "current user", which is me. I'm the administrator of this pc and there are no other users on this pc so I hope that was fine to do. If not please let me know... Because I don't know if Acronis has any use if you run it in windows xp's safe mode. I mention this because I'm the administrator of this pc and for some odd reason when I've booted up in windows xp's safe mode it's shown two accounts instead of one at the windows login screen. One saying administrator, and the other saying the name I chose for my pc. But I never created two accounts... I was told that they two logins are one in the same. If Acronis has no functionality or real world uses during windows xp's safe boot mode I've got nothing to worry about just because I installed it for "me" not all users on this pc. I don't know you let me know please...

    Second off does Acronis True Image Home v10 support creating a backup image to an external usb drive? I only ask because I know it's supported in v11 but haven't seen it mentioned anywhere for v10 which is what I have.

    Oh and by the way you guys offer some superb support here. Way better than the experiences I had with Norton Ghost.



    Thank You All!!
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2008
  9. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello budachild,

    Thank you for choosing Acronis Backup software.

    Administrator account is one which is created automatically when Windows is installed. It is hidden one and that's why you can see it booting in Windows Safe Mode only. If you installed Acronis True Image 10.0 Home for your account only (you have chosen to install it "for current user only") it is impossible to run it even under Administrator account. So please be sure your backups are in safe.
    Following your second question please be sure Acronis True Image 10.0 Home also supports USB controllers (this means the USB drives are supported too) as the eleventh version does. Somehow or other we would recommend you to check whether USB drive is recognized correctly when you run under Acronis Bootable Rescue Media (as shieber told Acronis Bootable Rescue Media uses Linux environment and the drivers used under Bootable CD differ from ones used under Windows). So if external USB drive is detected under Acronis Bootable Rescue Media you will be able to restore an image kept on external drive under CD. Acronis Bootable Rescue Media can be created via Tools -> Create Bootable Rescue Media.

    Thank you
    --
    Nikita Sakharov
     
  10. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    You know what? You guys are fantastic! Your support is amazing! I've never ever ever ever ever had this much support for any product I've ever put on my pc. This is outstanding :eek: ... I'm sure ACRONIS is going to win some awards for your support in the future. I notice that your section of the wilders forums is very much alive and vibrant. Heck I post something and yet the very next day I check for an answer there is one but my thread is still at the bottom of the page which goes to show how alive your forum is. :argh:

    I'm impressed.

    Anyways I'd like to know what would be the correct way to see if my USB external drive is detected by the rescue disc? I'm thinking I should shut down my pc, plug the ac power cord of my USB drive into the wall outlet, plug the USB cord from the drive into a rear USB port on my pc, turn on my pc, quickly press the "ON" button on my external hard drive case [Segate Free Agent Pro 500GB External USB HDD], and quickly put in the rescue disc during my pc bios screen so it catches it fast enough to load the disc instead of windows. What do you all thinko_O:blink:

    Good idea?? Bad idea??

    Also how do I check that my external drive is seen by the rescue disc once it loads the rescue disc?
     
  11. DwnNdrty

    DwnNdrty Registered Member

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    As the Nike commercial says "Just Do It". You're worrying too much. The software will guide you as you "do it".

    To check whether the software on the CD will see your usb drive, go through the steps of doing a Backup. When you get to the window where it asks for the Destination, see if it will let you choose the USB drive. If it does then you can Cancel out of the process or procede if you actually want to do a BAckup.
     
  12. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    Success my USB drive is listed as a saving location during the backup wizard in windows xp that is!!! I still have yet to create the rescue disc and check there.

    I actually have a question about that. When you go to create a rescue disc there are three boxes as you can see in the picture below:

    http://i29.tinypic.com/20ieyjq.jpg

    1. Which ones have to be checkmarked? All three or can you only checkmark the two bottom ones?

    2. If you pick to create a rescue disc with all of those and you boot up from the cd, do you have the option to choose full or boot mode?
    [I'm assuming that's what happens]



    Thanks
     
  13. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    Include both the Full and Safe mode versions on the CD (check them all).

    Yes, you can select which to run when you boot the CD. Normally, you'll want to run the Full mode version, but sometimes the Safe mode version is needed. It's nice to have it already on the CD.
     
  14. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    Hey thanks! Yes I figured the full version would be the one used during boot. I read that unlike the safe version, it actually allows loading of external USB drives. I actually tested out the rescue cd to see if it would identify my external hard drive and it did! :argh:

    One problem though...

    For some reason it displayed my SEAGATE FREE AGENT PRO 500GB USB EXTERNAL DRIVE info as follows:

    FREE AGENT DRIVE "E"

    FIXED DISC DRIVE

    FREE SPACE - 79.94GB

    TOTAL SIZE - 465.8GB


    Why would it say it only has 79.94GB of free space in the Acronis rescue disc when I really have about 300GB of free space on my external drive as seen in a normal boot with windows xp?
     
  15. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    On a lot of newer computers, USB drives are available when using the Safe mode version of TI. The speed is usually USB 1, though.

    Does TI in Windows show the 300GB or the 79.94GB of free space?

    Have you checked the drive for any file/allocation errors (using chkdsk /f, for example)?
     
  16. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    Yes Acronis v10 software used through windows xp shows my external drive as being 465.8GB in size & 153.0GB in used space which is correct & equal to what windows xp shows in the "My Computer" details section. That when subtracted equals 312GB in free space... Regardless of the anything why is the Acronis boot cd showing the correct drive size for my external drive but the wrong free space size? It shouldn't show 79GB of free space but instead the real free space size which is 312GB. Both windows xp and Acronis through xp see it correctly. I just don't understand what's going on. :mad:

    No this is a new drive and it's a couple months old... I don't think there would be anything wrong with it. I haven't used chksk in years... How do you do it? Last I remember it takes hours to scan a drive for errors. I wouldn't like to scan my external drive if it's going to take long because my external hard drive has no fan in the enclosure and gets really hot. It was made that way by SEAGATE with vents on the sides of the enclosure. & It's an enclosure you can't take apart so there can never be fans in it. The drive and enclosure come together so your not buying anything separately as it's all pre packaged and sold that way. I don't want to ruin the drive by leaving it on too long as it would get hot. I don't think the problem has anything to do with my drive anyways.
     
  17. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    To run error checking:
    Open My Computer and then Right click on the external drive letter.

    Choose properties. Choose tools. Error checking option is there.

    Error checking should be performed. Set up a fan blowing on it if you are concerned that it will get too hot. It should take only a few minutes.
     
  18. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    You can run chkdsk from a Command Prompt or you can open My Computer, right-click on the drive, select Properties, then the Tools tab and then Scan or Check for Errors (I don't have XP up right now).

    For example, if your external is assigned the F: drive letter:
    Code:
    chkdsk f: /f
    If you only check for errors (just the /f option) and don't do a surface scan (check for bad sectors, the /r option) then the scan doesn't take that long. If there's not many files, it only takes a few seconds.

    You're probably right, though. There's probably not anything wrong with the drive since Windows sees it okay.
     
  19. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    Ok well I connected my drive, went into "my computer", right clicked the drive, chose "tools" tab, clicked on "check now" button for "error checking", and I guess it scanned my drive because it was saying "phase 1, 2, etc". But in the end all it said is "Scan Complete". It didn't list a log of any kind or mention any details about the scan at all. I would assume that means nothing is wrong? :doubt:

    By the way [completely off topic] GROVER H your pdf guides were very helpful to me when I got Acronis.
     
  20. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    Glad the guides helped. Keep checking my signature for a new "Cloning" guide coming soon.

    I would reboot using the Rescue CD and see if the error checking made any improvements.

    You might check and see if XP system restore is enabled on this drive. If yes, you can disable.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2008
  21. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    No system restore is not enabled on my external drive. My external drive doesn't even show up there! :cautious:
    I don't know if I should be using Acronis to create an image of my internal hard disc if it isn't even reading my external drive properly.
     
  22. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    I would not let this delay getting a backup completed while booted from the Rescue CD. You might try pluging the usb cable into a connector on the back of your computer. Suggest you perform a "disk" backup which would be all partitions on the system disk.
     
  23. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    I never use the front usb ports on my pc... They're not even hooked up! I only use my rear ports.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2008
  24. budachild

    budachild Registered Member

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    Ok well I created my first "C" windows drive partition image using the Acronis v10 rescue boot cd. I followed the instructions on how to do so as per Grover H's pdf tutorial and a bit of reading from the official Acronis v10 manual. It took about 2 hours to create the image and validate it. At the end of everything I was prompted with a message that read:

    Backup Archive Creation Has Been Completed Successfully

    But just for the sake of doing so I clicked on the "show log" link on the left side of the Acronis panel. It showed a list of events, and I couldn't help but notice a colum called "error code" and a few things listed below it that I guess had occured during the tif image creation. I hope this doesn't mean something went wrong with the creationo_O

    Anyways I tried saving the log to my external drive. & it actually showed up as being saved on the drive when I browsed my external drive. I exited the rescue application and restarted into windows xp. I checked to see if the log was on my drive and it wasn't. That's weird... The tib image I created as a backup of my "C" drive is there though. Should I do some sort of validation process on the tib image through windows acronis to be sure it's ok, and if so how is that done?


    Thanks in advance
     
  25. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    For your first backup, you should run the validation from both the Rescue CD and from within Windows.
     
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