Image or clone - what's my best back-up strategy

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by quietman, Apr 23, 2015.

  1. quietman

    quietman Registered Member

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    I've looked at various posts on these forums before posting this .... so I apologise in advance
    if it's already been covered.


    I'm a little confused here.

    I'm currently making my regular backups on two separate external hard-drives.
    One is made using EaseUs and one with Aomei Backupper , both of them are the free versions.

    The more I read on here , the more I realise that I need to learn a lot more about back-up procedures.

    If my laptop's internal HD failed , what would be the easiest / quickest method to get up and running again ?
    A system restore from an image or from a clone , of the internal HD ?

    I made a System Rescue Disc shortly after buying the laptop , using the bundled Windows utility.

    When I first used Backupper , I tried to make a new Rescue Disc using their utility but failed because
    of a Windows module not being pre-installed in my OS.
    Then I downloaded and burned a disc of Windows Automated Install Kit , to try to make the Backupper
    utility work , but went no further with it.
    So I have no way of knowing if I really need the Rescue Disc from Backupper to restore from back-ups
    made with their software.

    In a way I'm fortunate , because I've never needed to do a full system restore , but it bothers me that
    if I needed to , I might find that the backups I have been carefully making are not going to work .

    Ironically , the most likely scenario where I might need to restore is probably following a Windows Update ....
    ( see here #12 )

    Any advice will be much appreciated.

    W7 SP1 64-bit
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2015
  2. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Images. Clones are for upgrading to a SSD or to a larger HD.

    You need to create AOMEI boot media and test it does boot.

    Can you post a screenshot of Disk Management? The partition layout is important.
     
  3. quietman

    quietman Registered Member

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    Thanks Brian K , I assume that means back to the Windows AIK , which I was reluctant to install.
    It seems like a big file when I need just one little bit of it ..... guess I could uninstall it after using it .

    From what I've read , it seems only my edition of W7 does not have the necessary utility bundled ( WinPE ? )

    My other back-ups are made with EaseUS Todo Backup ( Free ) and I never saw an option to burn a rescue disk.....
    .... but once again , I've never tried , or needed to do a full restore and I don't want to find out the hard way
    that I can't restore from those back-ups !

    I took a screen shot but can't see how to attach it on this forum .... all the options seem to want a URL

    EDIT .... OK got it , see below ..... I just can't work out how to do it in "edit" mode :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2015
  4. quietman

    quietman Registered Member

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    - Screenshot of Disk Management
    Pretty basic and simple , as you can see ....
    .... when I use Linux I boot off a USB Flash drive .... I just couldn't be bothered with dual-boot .
     

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    Last edited: Apr 23, 2015
  5. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    I agree with images. With cloning, you have one shot at it and that is it. If you make a clone while you have a problem and didn't realize it you are dorked. With images you can keep different points in time, so if the current one should be bad, you can try another.

    Also I would a) keep images with 2 programs, and b) test restore images occasionally. That is really the only way to be sure they will restore.
     
  6. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Yes, uninstall it when you don't need it. It takes up 3 GB of space.

    You MUST have rescue media otherwise you can't restore an image.

    The System Reserved and the OS partition are the only important ones. Note, the System Reserved partition is the Active partition, not the OS partition. But you should create one Entire Disk image as it is easy to restore if you have a HD failure. After creating that image you only have to create images of the OS partition as the SRP and Recovery partition don't change.
     
  7. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    I had a look at AOMEI. Click Utilities, Create Bootable Media, Windows PE. etc.

    With Win8.1 you don't need WAIK. I don't know about Win7.
     
  8. jwcca

    jwcca Registered Member

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    You need it, it's not included in 7.
    But there's a difference in which version of WinPE you use.
    PE3 was 1.6GB download whereas
    PE5 (based on W8.1) was only 384MB IIRC.

    With Macrium Reflect it's very easy to create the media choosing PE3, PE4 or PE5 within the Reflect UI.
    I've never tried Backupper so I don't know what it's options are or how easy or difficult it is.

    J
     
  9. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    I looked at Win7 and created AOMEI USB boot media. WAIK wasn't needed.
     
  10. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    It was easy with AOMIE. Strange thing is going CD there was a full suite of stuff, where as going to USB it was strictly AOMEI.
     
  11. quietman

    quietman Registered Member

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    Thanks to all for the helpful suggestions .

    I'll have to make a rescue disk with AOMEI after installing WAIK.

    I'm still puzzled as to why EaseUS doesn't prompt me to make one for their backups.

    Anyway , it seems I've been doing the right thing in making back-up images rather than clones !

    W7 SP1 64-bit
     
  12. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    See above. WAIK isn't needed.
     
  13. quietman

    quietman Registered Member

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    From Backupper "Utilities" I chose the option " Windows PE - Create bootable disc..... "

    There must be something odd about my edition of W7 , jwcca commented on this ( above )
    This is as far as I can get :-

    upload_2015-4-24_12-26-39.png
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2015
  14. jwcca

    jwcca Registered Member

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    WADK is the smaller one based on W8.1, that's the one you want.
     
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