New to Returnil-Newbie question time

Discussion in 'General Returnil discussions' started by papasmurf, Aug 16, 2010.

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  1. papasmurf

    papasmurf Registered Member

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    Well the title of this thread says it all. In keeping with that theme,
    before I install, (or attempt to install), I would like to ask a couple of questions..

    1) Should I disable the windows system restore before install?

    2) Does this cloner play nice with firewalls/antivirus programs?
    I run Privatefirwall v.7.0 and Avira Antivirus v.10, both are free home editions.

    3) Now as I understand it, this is sort of a real-time clone, (sort of like having a full system
    sandbox), so does this system image disappear on reboot, or will there be an option
    to chose which image to boot to?

    4) Is this an image of the system? Is there an option to chose where to store the image?
    If it is not an image, what is it? I am guessing that the cloned device, (i.e. C drive), will be
    used to also store the image.

    5) Is this a complete clone of C drive, or is it just the system? I would like to avoid any
    conflict issues.

    Thank you for any answers you can give to these questions.
     
  2. Boyfriend

    Boyfriend Registered Member

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    I will try to answer your questions:

    1. It is up to you. It is better to disable it.
    2. Yes. It is compatible with numerous security setups. It will not conflict with your security setup. Remember to disable Virus Guard (built-in virus scanner in Returnil 2010 products).
    3. It does not show an option to choose which image at boot time. It has option to retain or discard changes. Default is to discard changes. If you want to save changes of few folders, Home Lux version has option to use File Manager.
    4. No. it is not imaging software. The whole process is transparent. It will not ask you about where to store changes. It will do whole process for you.
    5. It is clone of your OS drive only (usually C: drive).
     
  3. Coldmoon

    Coldmoon Returnil Moderator

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    Hello papasmurf and welcome to the forums :)

    1. No, but you will need to deactivate automated backups/imaging and then create them when the virtual mode is off.

    2. Yes, RVS will "play nice" with the programs you list, but it would be worth your time to try RSS Pro 2011 as a stand alone solution for best system performance...

    3. RVS/RSS are not imaging solutions so there will not be an image provided by the software to boot up. In the RSS series (and being tested in the Returnil Multi-Snapshot Utility) there will be a new feature that allows you to create, store, and recover to multiple snapshots of your system. This will not be a "boot to" option however as you will need to restore the system to the target snapshot. It will provide a means to test software over extended periods of time...

    4. RVS/RSS tracks disk changes and either drops them at restart (default) or allows you to save selective file and folder changes to disk while the virtual mode is on (paid versions). It does not create or store an image.

    5. In RVS 2010 and RSS 2011, the virtual mode applies only to the System Partition. In RVS Lite 2011, you have an additional feature that allows you to virtualize non-system disks and partitions.

    Mike
     
  4. papasmurf

    papasmurf Registered Member

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    Thanks for the info.
    I think I will pass on this program,
    I am more interested in imaging, but I
    think this program does have its' merits.
     
  5. pegr

    pegr Registered Member

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    Hi Mike,

    I have some questions regarding this new feature. I apologise in advance if they have been asked before or if this is the wrong thread to raise this subject.

    1. Does it modify the MBR?
    2. Is it implemented using sector mapping, similar to the technology used in Rollback RX, Comodo Time Machine, etc?
    3. If using sector mapping, is it compatible with third-party degfragmenters and imaging programs?

    Thanks.
     
  6. Coldmoon

    Coldmoon Returnil Moderator

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    1. No, RVS/RSS will protect the MBR but does not use it or modify it.
    2. No, the technologies are completely different.

    Mike
     
  7. pegr

    pegr Registered Member

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    Thanks for clarifying that Mike.

    I'm intrigued as to how you've managed to create multiple snapshots without using sector mapping. If it's not a trade secret, is it something like the technology used in RVS, but with the ability to store multiple hidden RVSYSTEM.img files on the disk, each containing a separate clone of the system?

    As you didn't explicitly answer the third question, I assume this means that, however it works, it is compatible with other third-party software, subject to the usual caveat that the user should exit the virtual system first before defragmenting or imaging the disk. Is that a correct assumption?

    TIA. :)

    Regards
    pegr
     
  8. Coldmoon

    Coldmoon Returnil Moderator

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    Think of what RVS does and what has been said about it being more like a disk filter where there is little concern over what happens within Windows itself and you should begin to see why sector mapping is not required to achieve snapshots.

    You phrased the question as dependent on the answer in #2 and that is why I did not answer it specifically. You answered the question however in the quote above ;)

    Mike
     
  9. Dundertaker

    Dundertaker Registered Member

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    Have you guys heard about the "disable Volume Shadow Copy or system restore solution" at the Avira forums when Avira has a problem with freezing during full system scans? I kinda saw you were/or wanna use Avira (have not read the full thread though...still readig..)

    Returnil I think uses the volume copy service of windows..like ShadowDefender..
     
  10. Coldmoon

    Coldmoon Returnil Moderator

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    Hi Dundertaker,
    If you are reporting an issue when using RVS/RSS with Avira, please open a report thread in the appropriate forum (RVS 2010 = Releases and RVS/RSS 2011 = Betas) so this information does not get lost in a general discussion.

    Regarding Volume Shadow Copy, yes, this is the current available System Restore option in RSS 2011 but future versions will have the features available in the Returnil Multi-Snapshot Utility Beta which does not use VSC to create snapshots...

    Mike
     
  11. Dundertaker

    Dundertaker Registered Member

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    Hi Coldmoon;

    Well, not really reporting a conflict/problem but I just got wind of the VSC service in Avira and just thought "it might affect" Returnil usage. I don't have an experience with said probems pertaining to VSC but just wondered "if" I had that problem and I'm using Returnil 2010....I might be forced to abandone Avira.

    It's good to know that future versions not use VSC to create snapshots anymore!

    Thanks!
     
  12. Coldmoon

    Coldmoon Returnil Moderator

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    VSC will still be an available provider.

    Mike
     
  13. pegr

    pegr Registered Member

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    Hi Mike,

    I already knew from previous explanations of how RVS works that it performs some kind of disk filtering below the level of the Windows file system. I was also aware that changes to the disk while virtualised are recorded in a hidden file within the Windows file system. What I was trying to ascertain was whether the multi-snapshot feature is an extension of the same principle or whether it's been engineered in a completely different way.

    Although not explicitly stated, your reply hints at having extended the same approach currently used within RVS, which implies that multiple snapshots are stored as one or more hidden files within the Windows file system. If I've understood this correctly, then kudos to the Returnil team for coming up with an imaginative solution to creating multiple snapshots without the use of sector mapping, which I'm not keen on as an appproach. :)

    Many thanks for the clarification.

    Regards
    pegr
     
  14. Coldmoon

    Coldmoon Returnil Moderator

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    Hi pegr,
    At a high level, you are correct in your assumptions and the snapshot files can be backed up for compliance and/or auditing.

    Mike
     
  15. pegr

    pegr Registered Member

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    Hi Mike,

    Thanks once again for the additional confirmation.

    Regards
    pegr
     
  16. pilgrim49

    pilgrim49 Registered Member

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    I currently use Windows Steady State but want to move to Windows 7,
    which it does not support. The key feature for me is the ability to
    install an evaluation program which requires a system reboot, then a few hours or days later (as I specify) the system will revert to its original state removing all traces of the program. I do this so that I
    can try utilities written by individuals, often on foreign sites, which allow novel video processing but which occasionally come free with all sorts of undesirables.


    I cannot find in the available online documentation whether returnil will support this. Can you let me know or point me to a link that explains this capability?
     
  17. Boyfriend

    Boyfriend Registered Member

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    @pilgrim49: Returnil do not support saving virtual sessions across reboots. Once in virtual mode --> Reboot --> Everything is gone.
     
  18. Coldmoon

    Coldmoon Returnil Moderator

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    Hi pilgrim49 and welcome to the forums :)

    Though Boyfriend is correct regarding the current generations of RSS and RVS 2011, we are working towards support of this with our Multi-Snapshot Restore Utility that will eventually be integrated into a later version of our flagship product:

    http://www.returnilvirtualsystem.com/returnil-labs

    Take a snapshot and then restore later or take hourly snapshots and restore your system to a specific state during an extended evaluation as you describe.

    Ex:

    1. Create a snapshot
    2. Turn on automatic snapshotting
    3. Install an evaluation
    4. Watch for an hour or so for stability
    5. Change settings or other system configurations
    6. Restore the system to a previous snapshot before you changed the settings but still has the evaluation installed
    7. When done, restore the system to before the evaluation was installed
    8. Repeat as required...

    I think you will be impressed with the speed of the snapshotting ;)

    Mike
     
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