Lazesoft Recovery Suite 3.3 and free programs details

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Jim1cor13, Nov 4, 2012.

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  1. Jim1cor13

    Jim1cor13 Registered Member

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    I have outlined the features of the recovery suite, but I first tried their stand alone Disk Image and Clone app via bootable WinPe last night and it is a very good free offering, so I wanted to post about their entire recovery suite also. My OS is Win 7 Pro X32 on A Dell Inspiron E 1705 laptop. Much improved since this was discussed here in August I believe, especially the WinPe builder feature. Simple basic interface and easy navigation overall.

    Lazesoft Recovery Suite V3.3 Home Edition Free

    October 2012 is a very important month, also busy month. The iPad Mini was released on October 23. Windows 8 will launch on October 26. So we’ve spent the last Month finalizing changes to Lazesoft Recovery Suite to allow us to fully support this next generation OS. Download version 3.3 of Lazesoft Recovery Suite now to easily create WinPE recovery CD/USB disk and compatibility with Windows 8.

    Changes:
    Added full support for Windows 8.
    Reduced size of installation file.
    Improved WinPE Builder.
    Improved Media Builder GUI
    Improved cloning system disk.
    Added support for hiding/unhiding partition.
    Added support for setting active partition.
    Minor bug fixes.

    Features listed from their web site:

    Boot up from CD or USB disk

    Full access to non-bootable PC, Lazesoft Recovery Suite Live CD, giving you access to your computer even if Windows can’t or Windows is completely broken.

    Boot from various brands of desktops, laptops like Dell, ThinkPad, Hp, Sony, Toshiba, Acer, Samsung, etc.

    With WinPE-based and linux-base bootable disk builder, Lazesoft Recovery Suite has best hardware compatibility. ( Personal note: It is my experience first time I tried this, that their Linux based boot media was unable to see my drive details. It was the first Linux based boot media that has NOT worked properly on my Dell laptop, but now they have a very nice WinPe boot disk builder, and in my experience with their stand alone Disk Image and Clone Home edition free app I tried last night, the built in boot media builder took care of what was needed.

    It was a very nice seamless download of a boot.wim file from Microsoft, then it built the WinPe boot disk as either a bootable CD, bootable USB Flash Drive, or save as an ISO file. NO need to download 1.7GB of WAIK. This feature was very impressive at least for me, and I created both an ISO of WinPe boot media and then a bootable USB flash drive. It worked just fine. At this time, I have booted and created a Partition to Image backup. It is not very fast, compared to my favorite IFL, and the reason is it uses it appears max compression. I imaged my lean Win 7 partition of 6.8GB of data in 17 minutes, ending up with a image file of 2.8GB in size, so it was highly compressed and that is ok and obviously the main reason it takes longer to image. There is NO compression adjustment, they just set it it appears to a max setting. The Disk Image and Clone app does NOT offer image mounting, but certainly has features most could use for backup and restore. I am going to retry the Recovery Suite today, I assume it has the same WinPe media builder which should be much more capable than the Linux based boot, at least it is in my experience. They also *possibly* have improved the Linux based boot media, but I will stick with the WinPe because they have made it so easy to create. Below are all the features of this free recovery suite, it includes Disk Image and Clone plus many useful utilities as seen below. Everything runs from the boot CD/USB drive, and there is NO "hot" imaging available because it is a bootable solution only, but appears very useful so far. Something perhaps others can find useful and add to their backup and recovery solution arsenal. I can only speak for the Disk Image and Clone app at this time, but I still need to complete a restore to test both time and quality of restore.)

    * Boot up computer from CD or usb disk.
    * Support any types of hard disks like SATA, IDE and SSD.
    * User friendly Boot Media Builder interface.
    * Support WinPE USB boot disk.
    * Fast, easily, natively create PE Recovery Disk on 64 bit of Windows Vista, 7, 8.
    * Improved WinPE Builder New!
    * Improved Media Builder GUI New!

    Instantly repair PC when Windows can't start normally recover Windows from critical system errors when BSOD or it displayed a black screen.

    * Recover MBR and partition information
    * Recover missing or corrupted Windows system files such as 'ntldr is missing', 'bootmgr is missing', etc.
    * Recovery or edit corrupted registry, virus-infected registry key value.
    * Edit and Repair Windows boot file boot.ini or BCD
    * Rescue Windows XP Vista and Windows 7 32 and 64 bit.
    * Rescue Windows Server 2003/2008, SBS 2003/2008/2011, 32 and 64 bit.
    * Recover partition after accidental deletion or partition table damage.

    Easily recover data from non-working computer or disk

    * Access and copy files from computer even if Windows can't start.
    * Recover deleted files even if emptied from the Recycle Bin
    * Rescue files after a hard disk crash
    * Rescue files after accidental format, even if you have reinstalled Windows.
    * Rescue files after a partitioning error
    * Rescue files after RAW partition or RAW hard drives
    * Recover files including documents, photos, video music and email etc.

    Quickly reset Windows Local and Domain Account admin passwords

    * Reset Windows password even if forgot or lost it.
    * Clear Windows Local Password
    * Reset Windows Domain Password
    * Unlocks and Enables user accounts.
    * Find Windows key when you want to reinstall it
    * 100% recovery rate.

    Clone & Backup Partition or Disk

    * Create Backup Disk or Partition Compression Image.
    * Create Raw Disk or partition Image (sector by sector copy).
    * Clone entire Windows or Data hard drive or partitions to an internal or external disk.
    * Transfer disk or partitions from an old hard disk drive to a new one.
    * Partitions can be copy either with original sizes and locations, or Resizes transferred partitions to match new hard disk size.
    * Clone with fast mode and complete mode.
    * There are two methods can be used when cloning, Only copy used blocks or sector by sector copy.

    Create, format, delete, Wipe partition and disks

    * Bootable rescue CD or USB disk.
    * Format FAT, NTFS Partition.
    * Create, Delete partitions of any type.
    * Supports large disks: up to 2TB volumes on MBR.
    * Wipe Partitions or disk for data security reason.
    * Hide/unhide partition New!
    * Set active partition New!

    Lazesoft was mentioned here at Wilders a few months ago, but this new version 3.3 appears to be much improved, and with full Windows 8 support, which is also impressive as many others have not yet offered Win 8 support for those who use it.

    I decided to share this info for those who may find this free offer useful, but not before I personally tried first the stand alone Disk Image and Clone app. As mentioned, I still need to test a restore of the image I created, but so far, for a free offering, this appears a very useful kit. I will let you know how a restore goes when I get to it. :)

    They offer the individual programs here, all bootable solutions, NOT run from within Windows.
    http://www.lazesoft.com/index.html

    If you choose, you can download Recovery Suite which includes all programs from: http://www.lazesoft.com/lazesoft-recovery-suite-free.html It will take you to Cnet to download.

    Maybe someone will find this free solution useful and of comparable quality to other more popular free imaging and recovery utility suites/apps. They do also offer Pro and other type paid licensing, but the free features are enough for most I think. The site offers comparison between the free and paid for licenses, so you know what limits there are in the free version. I hope you find it helpful.

    Have a good day :)

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2012
  2. Solarlynx

    Solarlynx Registered Member

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    My system partition image done with Lazersoft is a bit smaller then done with Terabyte (which was made with maximum compression "Enhanced size C") and at approximately the same speed. But Lazersoft's Live CD didn't show me an option to add the system reserved partition of 100 MB (MBR I guess). I didn't take a risk to restore the image. It's a pity there is no option to validate the image.
     
  3. Jim1cor13

    Jim1cor13 Registered Member

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    Hi Solarlynx :)

    Interesting info on your size comparison and compression. Indeed it appears Lazesoft is using highest compression, but has no option to change that. I mainly use IFL, and always just use Standard compression and get about 50% reduction in the resulting image file. With Lazesoft, the image was about 300MB smaller if I remember correctly. I figured the reason Lazesoft took so long with my image creation was due to the compression being used. IFL will image Win 7 partition on my laptop in about 3:20, while Lazesoft took 17 minutes. Quite a difference in speed to save 300MB or so, so IFL in my experience has been the fastest for me in image creation for my OS partition. Some say ActiveImageProtector was even faster doing a hot image, but I personally only perform cold imaging by preference.

    Also, your comment about the SRP of Win 7 baffles me. I do not have that partition as I formatted an existing partition when I installed Win 7 pro, and as far as I know, no SRP is created if one formats existing partition before installing Win 7. Why Lazesoft does not show the SRP you have is certainly a concern. When I tried the Disk Image and Clone stand alone app, it showed me even the Dell utility FAT partition which is factory installed and only 55MB or so in size, but some image apps do not show the Dell utility part. Lazesoft did show this although with a question mark which made me also wonder in order to back up something with a question mark if I were to do a full disk image would require sector by sector, but at least it did show the small utility partition. Why it would not show the SRP in your case and how important that boot partition is is beyond me.

    I suggest maybe dropping a note to support@lazesoft.com and ask them about this incident. One would think it *should* certainly show that SRP if it exists. I would be curious to see how fast they get back to you and with the answer to this, as it would be important to know whether your image is "restore ready" or if this is a bug with Lazesoft. Did you create the WinPe boot media after you installed it? Reason I ask, is when I originally tried their recovery suite back in August, I first used the Linux boot media, as this was before they offered the new WinPe media builder, and the Linux boot disk did not show me anything but my boot flash drive, so I forgot about it and just noticed the other day they had come out with a new version with better WinPe support. I only have tried the Disk Image app, not yet the new recovery suite.

    Edit:Solarlynx: I sent an email to Lazesoft support for both of us. I asked them about the SRP not showing up and also about if the MBR is actually backed up with the image. I will update you on what they have to say when they respond. :)

    I assume you did create the WinPe boot disk, but in regards to your Win 7 SRP, I definitely would inquire about that and see why it would not show it and offer it to back up. Please let us know how it goes. It appears to be a useful kit for sure, but I tread softly when trying this stuff out, as I do not know what to expect sometimes, especially with disk image related utilities. I trust Terabyte products and Keriver and a few others, and while the Lazesoft suite appears useful, what you ran into could be a problem for sure.

    Not sure about this, but I think if your boot SRP is not damaged, I would assume if you had to restore the lazesoft image, it should boot up fine. Another issue is that nothing is offered in regards to if the Disk Image and Clone actually backs up the MBR track...I again assume it does, I hope it does, but it is another question. I will also drop a line to support and ask about this issue to have them clarify that the MBR gets backed up with the image. I hope you get things figured out. Maybe their boot disk is a bit buggy?

    I have run into odd problems with some free image apps, Paragon free acted strangely and messed up my BCD data upon a restore when I tried the 2011 version, Drive Image XML will not show my Dell utility part., and a few others there were either boot disk limitations, or they felt incomplete, which they actually are, but one would think not showing your SRP is a BIG problem.

    Have a good day, and thanks for sharing your experience. Only way we can know if these apps are reliable is to try them, and so far we have legitimate questions that I could not find any info on in their support area, and I can find no support forum mentioned from them, so it appears their support email is the only method to seek assistance.

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
  4. Jim1cor13

    Jim1cor13 Registered Member

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    Solarlynx: Here is the response I received from Lazesoft. They responded within 2.5 hours which is certainly faster than some other companies in my experience, of course it would depend upon the support load and traffic.

    "Hello Jim,

    Thank you for contacting us.

    > 1) When creating a partition image, is the MBR also backed up?
    When creating disk image, the MBR is also backed up. When creating
    partition image, the MBR is not backed up.


    > 2) The SRP is usually a 100MB partition that is created by Win 7 if
    installed onto an unformatted drive. Should not this be shown in Disk
    Image in order to back it up? Could it be a problem with their boot
    disk?
    The SRP sometimes is shown too small to notice on disk panel in Disk Image.
    We recommend you using disk to image function to backup totally Win 7
    system. Disk to image will back up system partition (100MB partition),
    boot partition (C), MBR and other data partitions in the same disk. We
    plan to add a new function – backup system that will only backup system
    partition (100MB partition), boot partition (C) and MBR.


    Lazesoft Recovery Suite Home Edition is all-in-one recovery application.
    We recommend you use it."

    ---

    So the MBR is backed up only with full disk image, not partition image, at least for now. Regarding SRP, again it appears full disk image is recommended.

    As far as I am concerned, the function they are planning to add should certainly already have been implemented, but at least they are aware of it, and for now, 'disk to image' appears the only solution in order to capture the SRP and MBR. Maybe next version will have it implemented. At least they appear to have decent support.

    I do not like the fact of having to do full disk to have the MBR backed up, including the SRP if one has that partition. I assume they figured most folks would simply perform a full disk to image backup, but I find being forced to do this is not only inconvenient, it would unnecessarily be a space hog on the backup drive.

    Edit: I just did a restore using the image I made Saturday night. Restored just fine in 5:40, 2 minutes longer than IFL for comparison, overall easy operation. I used the recovery suite WinPe USB flash boot disk. :)

    Hope that helps! :) I hope they continue to improve.

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
  5. Solarlynx

    Solarlynx Registered Member

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    Thank you, Jim, for your detailed report. Here my observations for my other comp (a notebook) with a separate system partition and 2 additional partitions for data:


    Terabyte sees MBR (100 MB)

    Lazesoft sees MBR (100 MB) and gives option to backup it but only as a separate image, not with the system partition image. Though it is not a big problem.

    Paragon sees 3 additional items and you can check them to backup:
    - First Hard Disk Track (0 Bytes)
    - Master Boot Record (0 Bytes)
    - System Reserved (100 MB)

    In general I'm quite satisfied with Terabyte and most probably I will keep only it for imaging.
    As for Lazesoft, their Recovery Suite seems to be a decent solution with additional tools to fix windows problems and recover data. I've burnt a CD just for a case.
     
  6. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Solarlynx,

    Just to help out with the terminology.

    The MBR is the first sector on a HD. It contains bootstrap code, the Disk Signature and the Partition Table.

    The First Track is the first 63 sectors on the HD and it includes the MBR and the following 62 sectors. BootIt BM uses sectors beyond the first sector to store partition and boot data. Other boot managers use the First track for similar purposes. It's important to remember the MBR and First Track are not inside any partition. The First Track ends after 63 sectors and the first partition commences after at least 2048 sectors.

    The 100 MB partition is the System Reserved Partition and it contains the OS booting files. Again, nothing to do with the MBR.

    When you create a partition image with the TeraByte apps, the First Track is backed up as well. When you restore the image you have the option of restoring the First Track or not. For most users, the First Track need not be restored as it will not contain useful bytes. But if your MBR has been wiped out by any process, restoring the First Track at the time of the partition image restore will restore your MBR.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2012
  7. Solarlynx

    Solarlynx Registered Member

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    Thank you, Brian K, for clarification with terms. Some numbers in my previous post were from Paragon. I attach the picture from Paragon below.
     

    Attached Files:

  8. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    A comment about "formatting" and "unformatted drives". These terms are frequently used loosely and it can be difficult to know what the author means. Formatting is the act of writing a File System to a partition. You have to have a partition before you can do a format. You can't format unallocated space.

    A partition in Windows can be...

    unformatted without a drive letter

    unformatted with a drive letter

    formatted without a drive letter

    formatted with a drive letter

    In addition, each of these partitions can be Active or not.

    We know if we install Win7 into unallocated space on HD0 we get a 100 MB SRP. To avoid getting a SRP we install Win7 into an Active, formatted partition on HD0. But can we install Win7 into an Active, unformatted partition on HD0 and not get a SRP? Yes, we can. So the partition doesn't really need to be formatted prior to the install. But we do it anyway as we don't tend to work with unformatted partitions.
     
  9. TerryWood

    TerryWood Registered Member

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    Hi Everybody

    On the basis of the above comments I decided to try Lazesoft Free

    It is indeed the easiest software to use and in particular to produce a Win PE CD.

    The killer for me was that when I imaged my hard drive some 58gb it took 1 hour and 8 minutes, whereas Macrium Reflect takes 27 minutes.

    Hope this is useful

    Terry
     
  10. Jim1cor13

    Jim1cor13 Registered Member

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    You are very welcome Solarlynx :) I to think having a copy of the boot media is a good idea as it adds some useful tools plus imaging if one wants to use it. My test restore went fine and at least I know the image app part of the suite is stable and works well, although much slower in imaging than IFL and others mentioned. No complaints though for a free suite.

    @Brian: Thank you once again for clarifying about the terms and details. Very much appreciated and helpful my friend. :)

    @Terry: Glad it worked for you, although certainly lagging behind others speed wise. Thank you for sharing your experience with it Terry. I think for a free recovery suite and the tools available, it has its usefulness. I am adding it to my recovery tools just to have it, and I will also follow up over time and see how they improve and any new features they add. I agree Terry also about their new WinPe boot media builder. It really does a good job at downloading just what is needed and creating the finished product. That did impress me and I think would be very helpful to those not familiar with WinPe based boot media or are unable to download the 1.7GB WAIK from MS. Lazesoft simply made the whole process very easy to implement. It appears Lazesoft does not offer the Linux boot as so far when I created the boot media, it only offered WinPe, and that was a good move on Lazesoft part. I had trouble with their Linux based recovery, it was pretty useless on my laptop as it was unable to see my drive details. It was the first Linux boot disk utility that I had trouble with, so using only WinPe now is a move in the right direction for most.

    Thanks to everyone who gave it a try and shared their experience. Has some weak spots, but certainly useful and can't beat the price. Hopefully they will continue to improve especially in the area of image creation speed, but at least it appears solid although slower than most. Comparable for me with the speed of Keriver Image which in my experience is very solid, but was also much slower in image creation than say IFL/IFW, etc.

    Have a good day :)

    Jim
     
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