Need REALLY basic help

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by Trix D, Nov 4, 2008.

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  1. Trix D

    Trix D Registered Member

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    I have Acronis TI v 9 and I've been too daunted to ever use it (stupid, I know). Can someone please offer some pointers for a complete novice?

    I have a 500 GB external hard drive and I would like to backup my system so that if something goes horrendously wrong, I can restore my OS, drivers, customised settings and data (most importantly). Another reason for using the software would be, if I change computer I don't want to go through the whole rigmarole of reinstalling all my software. Therefore, I would like the most simple backup procedure. Here are my questions:

    1-Should I perform a Full Backup as opposed to any other suggested combination?

    2-If I choose Full Backup, how often would you suggest I perform a backup and does this mean I need to keep just one full backup and delete old ones to save space?

    3-If I create a CD to boot from after a crash, is there anything I need to create or do in order for it to work?

    4-If I'm backing up to an external drive, do I need to create a secure zone?

    5-I've read the advice on this forum and it seems to be to test the bootable disc before a system crash. How do I do this? This is such unfamiliar territory it unnerves me slightly.:oops:

    6-I was thinking of using Genie Backup Manager in tandem with Acronis TI. Is this a good idea? I gather Genie is better at data backup and Acronis is best for backing up OS systems.

    Thanks
     
  2. bodgy

    bodgy Registered Member

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    Yes, just make sure that you choose DISK 1 as this will make sure that the whole drive plus the MBR (the area of drive that knows where to find parts of Windows) are imaged.

    The answer to this question is question :D How often do you use the computer, do you have Windows automatic updates working, do you frequently install programs, receive email, etc?

    A bare minimum would be once a week. I would suggest making a FULL image once a week, and then an incremental of that either daily or every two days.

    If you make two tasks that do the above, TI 9,10 and 11 will automatically write over them, TI 2009 will not at this moment.

    I would advise making a one complete image of your system, that is the 'golden image', this is your base image of your system as it is now, and then don't touch this again. Give it a meaningful name like "Great Aunt Bess' master backup for xyz computer", well probably not quite that long :) , then make another task with a weekly schedule for the weekly FULL -"weekly_full_xyz", then another task using the same image name "weekly_full_xyz" but on either a daily or two daily INCREMENT or DIFFERENTIAL. Each week the FULL and INC/DEF will be overwritten.

    I'm not sure what you mean here, if you have a RW CD then it is best you create the CD and then boot from it to check that the Linux environment can see all your disk drives.

    If it refuses to boot, or it boots but it doesn't list your drives, come back to the forum with the exact problem and advice can be dispensed (or not). If it works then eithe rleave it on an RW or burn it to a read only CD.

    No, the SZ is meant for, and is only guaranteed to work on an internal drive.

    Whop the CD into the machine, reboot, if you get to a screen that first shows

    Loading Acronis........ and then see a menu pop up asking if you want to use FULL or SAFE mode, choose FULL, once TI has finished loading, go through all the motions of restoring an image - if you can get all the way to the screen that has a PROCEED button on it, then you can be 98% certain that you will be able to restore your image. The only way to make that 99.99999% certain is to perform an actual restore, but you'd need a spare harddrive to do this, and if you don't have one, then go as far as the PROCEED button and then cancel the operation and reboot into Windows. Do not remove the CD until the computer starts to reboot otherwise TI gets confused.

    Make sure your internal and external drives have NAMES (labels in operating system speak), otherwise it is easy to be confused which drive is which when using the recovery CD. Doesn't have to be anything fancy - the external you could name External etc.

    Can't comment on this one, I've never used Genie.

    Colin
     
  3. Trix D

    Trix D Registered Member

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    Hi Colin

    Thank you so much for this advice. I am really grateful. I feel I know what I am doing now. In question 3 you say make sure the 'Linux environment' can see all the drives. Do I need to use Linux in order to use Acronis?

    I'm just reading the manual again and it says I need to have a secure zone before I can activate the Startup Recovery Manager. Can I just use the bootable CD instead?

    On the subject of the bootable CD, I just tried to test it to see if it works and Windows loaded as usual ignoring the CD altogether. Am I supposed to press a key or something while it's Windows is starting up?
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2008
  4. bodgy

    bodgy Registered Member

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    The rescue CD uses it's own Linux to boot the system in Full mode, in Safe mode it uses a form of DOS.

    For your setup you do not need to use the SRM or a Secure Zone.

    Make sure that in the computer BIOS it is set to boot from CD drive before Hard Drives.

    Colin
     
  5. Trix D

    Trix D Registered Member

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    Ok, now I am showing my lack of pc know-how... :oops:

    How do I get into the BIOS and if I change it so that it boots from CD, do I need to keep this set up once I've tested the bootable CD? If I do does that mean I won't be able to boot up normally (from the hard drive)? Or do I change it back to its original setting?
     
  6. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    You can change it back or you can leave it. I always have the CD/DVD as the first boot device because it is convenient and makes virtually no difference to the boot time or anything else.
     
  7. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    Usually, the computer's manual or the BIOS screen shown when you first turn on the computer will tell you the key to press. You may need to press ESC or TAB when you see your "logo" screen to switch to the information screen. This screen often goes by very fast and it may take several times to find it.

    A lot of computers use DEL, F1, F2 or F10 to enter the BIOS. Some computers also have a Boot Menu key (F11, for example) that will allow you select which device to boot without needing to make BIOS changes.
     
  8. Trix D

    Trix D Registered Member

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    Thanks MudCrab. I'll give this a go. I love the name, by the way!
     
  9. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    Trix D,
    Check my guides listed on line 2 of my signature below. These might provide some help if you are new to True Image Home.
     
  10. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello Trix D,

    Thank you for your interesting in Acronis True Image

    The only unanswered question is concerning Genie Backup Manager. We wouldn’t recommend you to use any backup/restore program with Acronis software, because the latest can malfunction or work improperly.

    Best regards,
    --
    Dmitry Nikolaev
     
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