Is There A Better Imaging Program?

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by rwinegar, Jul 3, 2008.

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  1. rwinegar

    rwinegar Registered Member

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    This may not be the best place to ask this question, but is there a better imaging program than TI? TI used to be the most valuable program on my computer. However after upgrading to version 11 I get the infamous USB device disconnect error. I can't live with that. After installing version 8 on a brand new computer and trying to restore an image I get an error message that TI is unable to locate any hard drives. As such I am running this new computer without any imaging program. That scares me to death. TI tech suppport does not answer my emails from two days ago.

    I am looking for recommendations. What about Ghost 14? I see it bashed a lot in online reviews. But can such a popular program be that bad? All I want is a good program that will create a disk drive image of my boot drive and save it on a second internal drive and be able to successfully restore that image.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Tabvla

    Tabvla Registered Member

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    The short answer to your question is "No".

    ATI is not without its problems and Acronis Support can take what seems like an eternity to respond to the simplest of questions.... but at the end of the day you will not find a more complete package nor a Forum with more knowledgable members. This Forum is so good that you only really need Acronis Support for issues around Licensing or where an intimate knowledge of the actual code is needed.

    If you are having a problem with v11 I suggest that you revert to v10 which is very mature, very stable and supports the widest range of hardware options. In my view ATI v11 was released under pressure from Sales & Marketing and you can be almost assured that there are a lot of technical staff at Acronis that were not particularly happy about that event.

    Let us know if reverting to v10 resolves your issues.

    T.
     
  3. LenC

    LenC Registered Member

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    Shadow Protect. More expensive and more stable. None of this nonsense about linux issues and creating special Bart disks or anything like that - and none of the nonsensical features of TI.

    I continue to use TI 9 on older computers, but have moved to Shadow Protect for new purchases.

    It just works.
     
  4. Longboard

    Longboard Registered Member

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    With Apologies and respect to Acronis support: del if you will :)
    lol : you're not kidding

    Lots of other options if you dont like Acronis
    You could try:
    Terabyte: http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/index.htm

    This thread should be...
     
  5. Tabvla

    Tabvla Registered Member

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    LenC is justified in his endorsement of ShadowProtect, which is a good no-frills product.

    Opinion is still divided on the merits of ATI vs "the competition". Below are 2 links that together give a balanced review. Edward Mendelson of PCMag thinks that SP is the better product while Mathew Sparks of PC Pro is not convinced.

    Read both reviews and then make an informed judgement.

    However, something to think about before you commit to a product is the support that you will receive. In this respect, this Forum must rate as one of the best anywhere in the world. There are a lot of very knowledgeable users on this Forum who devote a considerable amount of time and energy to trying to resolve problems quickly.

    Look into the support channels of other products before you make a decision.

    PCMag - http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1895,2254465,00.asp

    PC Pro - http://www.pcpro.co.uk/reviews/173619/storagecraft-shadowprotect-desktop-edition-31.html

    T.
     
  6. layman

    layman Registered Member

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    Isn't it amazing that so few software companies realize the value of sponsoring an online venue such as this? If companies were enlightened enough to "get it", they'd realize that a couple of salaries devoted to competently staffing and moderating an active customer forum would equal an entire building full of tech support grunts. It not only leverages the knowledge and experience of the user base, it provides invaluable feedback: the "voice of the customer."

    Unfortunately, enlightenment is in very short supply. I can't think of many companies that do get it -- including Acronis. The existence of this forum seems more a matter of chance than astute management. At one time, there was a rather similar forum for users of Intuit products. The company hosted it, but did virtually nothing to administer or contribute to it. Still, it was an invaluable resource, the only place you could get knowledgable answers to questions or problems. But, just as here, the threads turned increasingly negative because of sorry company-provided support, serious defects that went uncorrected release after release, feature bloat and quality decline proceeding hand-in-hand. The discussion eventually turned sour enough that the company shut down the forum. That's when they lost me as a customer. I haven't touched an Intuit product with a 10' pole since. Take a lesson, Acronis.
     
  7. LenC

    LenC Registered Member

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    I agree with Tabvla about the quality of support available on this forum - it's unbelievable. Many experts who are very generous with their time.

    At the end of the day, however, I will go with the stable product - Shadow Protect - one for which I don't need continuing tech or forum support to get the product to work properly.
     
  8. AKAJohnDoe

    AKAJohnDoe Registered Member

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    I have Paragon Drive Backup Personal V8.51 and it backs up and restores my notebook flawlessly. I backup from within Vista to an external USB drive (which also worked with ATI 11) and I boot from CD and restore from the external USB drive (which never worked with ATI 11).

    I have a second identical internal drive that I swap with the original for testing the restore process soas to not destroy my system.

    ATI 11 would never successfully restore; PDB does.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  9. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    Paragon has it's problems with some hardware setups when using the boot disk -- Paragon also uses Linux for the Boot CD.

    ShadowProtect uses VistaPE on the BootCD and doesn't have the linux hardware issues. Doesn't do file by file backups last I looked. It might have been added to a more recent version.
     
  10. LenC

    LenC Registered Member

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    Current version of Shadow Protect doesn't do file by file backups. I can live with that. It's linux and the related baggage I couldn't live with.
     
  11. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    A really nifty fieature of SP is that you can boot form the CD and then add harware drivers on the fly. Actually, they're kind of cornered into having this feature since, using MS Vista, they have to kep tigher control over the iso for the boot CD -- just to get a free trial of it you have to ask special permission. All worth it if you want to avoid the hardware hassles of linux drive-you-nuts drivers
     
  12. InfinityAz

    InfinityAz Registered Member

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    Going to agree with AKAJohnDoe. Was a happy user of ATI 9, upgraded to Vista and ATI 11 and had major problems (even on a fresh install) so that I couldn't restore any images without corrupting my system (and requiring a fresh OS install). Even worse was the lack of or terrible customer support I received.

    Anyway, switched to Paragon and never had one issue.
     
  13. yankinNcrankin

    yankinNcrankin Registered Member

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    Check out PING. It even does bare metal restores, I just bought a new HD thats 2x larger than my original 160GB Seagate I upgraded to a 320GB Western Digital, plugged it in, fired up my box with my external HD with a previous image created by PING and it restored my system in a 1 min and 10 sec minus the second partition that was on my original however after a boot up all i needed to do was right click format D: and all is good, a simple drag and drop of my personal data from my external into D: and im back in action.http://ping.windowsdream.com/ping/download.html
     
  14. lodore

    lodore Registered Member

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    acually paragon drive backup 9 at least the pro version comes with a vistape recovery cd. for version 8.5 paragon made one epscially for me.
     
  15. rwinegar

    rwinegar Registered Member

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    I read several reviews on Shadowcopy. I was impressed. But where to buy it other than from the manufacturer for around $80 - which is a very high price - much higher than all it's competition. None of my favorite shopping sites carry this product. I find that very strange for a program that is supposed to be so good.

    This site offers Shadowcopy at a very good price. But I am suspicious. Anyone dealt here before?

    http://www.bestoemsoft.com/product_details.php?product=7189
     
  16. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Did you read this on their website.


    I wouldn't touch them with a ten foot pole.

    Pete

    PS I think ShadowProtect(not copy) is a great program. Very reliable and fast.
     
  17. Long View

    Long View Registered Member

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    Never had any problems with Acronis 6,7,8,9,9.1,10 or 11 but found Shadow Protect to be just as good and a little bit faster for larger images. The only time I tried Paragon it messed up my drive letters. Paragon admitted there was a problem - hopefully solved by now.

    So is there a better imaging program - Yes and No. It depends entirely upon you system and software and what you are trying to do. I doesn't matter what others do - only what you want. So try out Paragon and Shadow Protect and see what you think.
     
  18. acr1965

    acr1965 Registered Member

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    SiteAdvisor red warning-

    http://www.siteadvisor.com/sites/bestoemsoft.com
     
  19. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

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    Exactly my situation. I have already restored my Vista system with ShadowProtect so many times that like with other people one loses the typical anxiety associated with restoring a system: Will it work or not? Yes, it will. With SP it becomes a normal routine.

    I should also say that TI 9 also works flawlessly with my XP system, but it's very hard to ignore the horror stories associated with TI 11. The only minus I have with SP is the price: With the maintenance fee it's just under 100 US $, a bit steep IMO.
     
  20. appster

    appster Registered Member

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    I often find that 'simpler is better' and when it comes to disk-imaging that really is the case with Drive Snapshot. It doesn't have all of the bells and whistles of the others mentioned, but I don't think any of its competitors can match it for simplicity, reliability and speed. It is so simple that it doesn't even have to be installed and you can run the executable (snaphot.exe) from just about anywhere!

    The one drawback of DS is that unless you are a DOS guru, you need to find another method for restoring your system partition. One way of doing this is to create any basic Win bootup CD (BartPE, VistaPE, etc.) and then run snapshot.exe from just about anywhere it resides. Another way is to use markymoo's free 'Drive Snap' front-end which works very well.

    Fwiw, I was an ATI user for several years and while I found it to be pretty dependable, I found that it often (but not always) took an unusually long time to backup and/or restore my drive partitions! I even found this peculiarity occurs with its latest version 11. :doubt:
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  21. Hairy Coo

    Hairy Coo Registered Member

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    Very likely,the first time you have to re activate the product ,it will fail and you will have wasted even the so called OEM price.

    StorageCraft are VERY careful in policing reactivations.

    Just pay the full price-well worth it!!
     
  22. NGRhodes

    NGRhodes Registered Member

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    What do you mean by better ?

    Reliability is most important for sure, its the whole point of a backup, something you can rely on in case of failure.
    This is not just dependant on the software, but also individual hardware configurations, testing is important.

    Support is not far behind in event of something going wrong, this also includes updates/patches to software in the longterm - how long will your version will be supported for ?
    Nothing worse than being stuck with an old broken previous version that you can't even uninstall.

    Featurewise, its OK saying, its best because its got more features than XYZ (and then how reliable), but which do you actually need and RELIABLY ?
     
  23. rwinegar

    rwinegar Registered Member

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    What do I mean by "better"? I mean one that works.
     
  24. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    Well to a degree they all work. But I have beaten the heck out of ShadowProtect and it has never let me down. I routinely switch back and forth between XP and Vista with SP images, and it works like a champ.

    As for simplicity. SP to me is fairly simple right out of the box. Drive Snapshot is also very good, but I don't consider it as simple. Right out of the box you have the DOS nightmare to contend with, or else you have to go to BartPE or other bandaids.

    Pete
     
  25. osip

    osip Registered Member

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    Yes, but BartPe with DS plugin and/or IFW plugin I find absolutely great...I made the BartPe Iso with returnils session lock on, burned the CD, after reboot not a sign of it but with a splendid operational rescue CD ...The .iso created I stored and with UltraIso it´s easy to even upgrade IFW and DS if needed and burn again...
     
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