Image size of sytem backup

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by Koiishi, Jun 8, 2008.

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  1. Koiishi

    Koiishi Registered Member

    Jun 8, 2008
    Hi all,
    Well, this turned out to be a longer thread than expected for being the first... sorry for writing so much...

    I'm planning to create a complete system backup image for my girlfriends pc, as it has crashed 2 times in the last 3 months - and i want to avoid the experience of re-installing windows when you less expect it. That's why I'm kindly asking here to see if Actronis True Image would do what I'm planning to do.

    I have installed win xp & sp2, drivers, basic programs and antivirus on a Sata 250GB drive, partitioned in 2 x 120 [C: & D:] Total used capacity is 7GB of 120 GB on C:, drive D: is empty and formatted.
    Now, I've been going to the tutorial creating a full disk archive, very good tutorial indeed, but going through slide B4 one question arises to me:
    If I plan to do an image of my whole system...will Acronis create an image of 120 GB despite the fact that I only have 7 GB used? Is the architecture of Acronis' disk imaging based on the disk/partition size itself?
    I mean with this that ATI creates an disk image with the same size of the partition your system is installed on. If this is the case, the only possible way to reduce the size of your full system image, would be to reduce the size of the partition your system is installed, right ? Sorry if this sounds confusing...but I'm confused myself.
    So for my case this means that I would need to reduce the partition of C: for exmample to 15 GB, either adding the excess space to D: or creating a third partition, correct? Or is there any other way that can be used to reduce the size of the full disk image? :doubt:
    Any tips and hints are deeply appreciated :doubt:
    Best regards, Koiishi
  2. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

    Oct 31, 2005
    TI only includes the "in-use" sectors in the image so all of the empty space in the partition will not be part of your backup. TI also excludes the hibernation file if you have one and the pagefile. It puts a few byte placeholder in the image to denote the excluded files. For a typical C drive the image size using normal compression will be 70% or less than the used size. This is a rough estimate and lots of compressed files will influence the image size.

    If you have TI11 it has a feature called sector-by-sector or something like that which will put all the partition's sectors, used or not, into the image but this is not the normal way to create an image.

    Although based on my answer you do not have to worry about the image size and resize your partition, there is a trick using TI to resize a partition. You create a Secure Zone taking space from the partition you want to shrink. Do not enable the Acronis Automatic System Recovery option. After the Secure Zone is created you then go back into TI and delete the Secure Zone you just created. TI will ask you where you want to return the now unwanted space to and you select the appropriate partition or leave it as unallocated. This is how it is done to the best of my recollection. I last used this trick some time ago so I may have omitted the odd detail but this is the idea. You may search the forum or perhaps it is mentioned in one of the user guides on the forum for more info.

    I personally only put the OS and apps on C so I tend to keep my C drive under 40GB and for me that is more than enough.
  3. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

    May 10, 2006
    Massachusetts, USA
    The size of the backup file will be about 60% of your current used space.

    The disk type backup will create a backup of both partitions.
    When restoring to a new disk, you can restore to a smaller or larger disk.

    When restoring C partition only to the existing disk, you can restore only the C partition.

    If you want to change the size of the partition, you need to perform the restore with resize as discussed in my guide on line 3 of my signature but you still should create a full disk backup of both partitions--even if one is empty.
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