Suggest "Freezing" software that allows a frozen session across reboots.

Discussion in 'sandboxing & virtualization' started by paulescobar, Sep 22, 2008.

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  1. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    I have searched the forum, and read many topics.
    But I still have a question.


    Is there a "Freezing" software that allows a frozen session across reboots?
    (By "freezing software", I mean stuff like DeepFreeze & SteadyState)

    For example, I want to test installations of various software.
    But in many instances, the installer needs to reboot to complete.
    Many "freezing" software don't allow reboots within a frozen session.

    • I have tried "DeepFreeze". But it doesn't allow multiple reboots in a frozen session.
    • I have tried "SteadyState". But it messes up my Windows settings.
    • I have heard of "ShadowUser". But I hear that it has basically been abandoned by its developers.
    • I have heard of programs like EAZ-FIX. But I hear that they take long to load previous states.

    Are there any other programs?

    My criteria is as follows:
    1) Should not take long...to exit from frozen session & return to normal.
    2) Should use little to no resources...when not in frozen session.
    3) Should be a software that still has dedication of developers.

    Thanks for any help.
    And feel free to question me if more info is needed.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2008
  2. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,
    Have you considered virtualization?
    Mrk
     
  3. raakii

    raakii Registered Member

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    * I have heard of "ShadowUser". But I hear that it has basically been abandoned by its developers.

    So wat if it is abandoned by it is developers, this softwares is a good one , esp if u wanna test a few softwares,

    I think the viruses , which break through its defenses occur only very rarely and not frequently


    * I have heard of programs like EAZ-FIX. But I hear that they take long to load previous states.

    hmmm.........eaz-fix or ayrecovery these softwares are very very fast..use it and see
     
  4. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    I'm only vaguely aware of stuff like VMWare.
    I've heard about it, but never tried it.

    I guess the main reason I haven't tried it is that I fear it takes up system resources.
    I imagine both my windows programs and the "virtualization" program battling over memory and processor.

    So I'd rather have some program like DeepFreeze.
    Where its in use when I need it.
    But disabled when I don't.
     
  5. raakii

    raakii Registered Member

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    Deep Freeze is utter waste ,there are softwares likes shadow defender

    but these softwares dont keep sessions across reboot, so does not give u any solution.

    You may even try Altiris SVS , it doent require reboots an it is good
     
  6. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    I will settle for "ShadowUser"...if no one suggests anything better.

    But I'll just hold off until more people post in the topic.


    I originally thought Eaz-Fix was good.

    But then I read this collection of reviews (for duplicate Rollback Rx):
    http://www.neatnettricks.com/SoftwareReviews/review_Rollback.htm
    Stuff like this freaked me out:
    I wouldn't mind trying it, if more people contradicted the "slow" claims.
     
  7. raakii

    raakii Registered Member

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    My opinion , never never use these two options in rollback rx eaz-fix or ayrecovery
    1)Synchronize Files-Utter waste ,eats away ur C drive space and causes lot of problems.

    use this option Default one:take snapshot during restore and synchronize the files u want by right click and select synchronize,or use virtula dive


    2)Remove logo during start up -saves u 5 seconds during startup
    remove the program startup list using msconfig


    startup increases :as it has to otherwise the software will never work , all Writes has to pass through its driver , and u need to load these drivers ,

    startup time increases by 7 seconds for me (many give false information)

    i dont like rollback rx and use only ayrecovery( i dont know the reason)
     
  8. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    Thanks for the interesting suggestion.

    I just looked it up, and came across this site:
    http://lifehacker.com/software/installation/hack-attack-safely-install-software-in-a-virtual-layer-162910.php

    I guess I'm skeptical.
    The way it works is kind of worrying for me.
    Not sure if it'll let me test the installation in a real-world setting, due it it isolating the software. Plus, I read that it has trouble with an install like IE7.

    But I'm adding it to my list.
    I'll test it later, and see if my worries pan out.
     
  9. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    Thanks again.
    I'll test this also, keeping in mind your suggestions.
     
  10. tradetime

    tradetime Registered Member

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    As already suggested, I think many who do extensive testing of softwares requiring reboot use virtualisation such as VMware player. I also suspect a critical and must have tool for anyone testing many softwares is a reliable imaging software, so that when it all goes horribly wrong you can simply restore an image.
    If you consider Virtual ware not to give you a real world testing environment then the solution would seem to be to acquire said reliable imaging software, image your system, and test it, then install your software normally, knock yourself out with it, and restore the image when done.
     
  11. raakii

    raakii Registered Member

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    altiris svs does not support reboot softwares

    I think the best thing is to use shadow user ,but that software just does not have alternative .Eaz-fix is a different kind of software, so is altiris svs . Hence topmost priority has to be shadow user(even tough it has loopholes my fav for testing if u consider trying out a software).Eaz-fix installation is a pain , if ur c drive is not new and has old data.
     
  12. raakii

    raakii Registered Member

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    Imaging software:go for drive snapshot or Shadow protect but recovery is not instantaneous.
     
  13. farmerlee

    farmerlee Registered Member

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    Nothing slow about eazfix/rollback rx from my experiences, i use both on different systems. Boot times are pretty much the same after installation and theres no noticeable impact on performance. To revert all changes requires a simple reboot which takes just a few seconds longer than a regular boot. I'm an impatient person and i definitely wouldn't be using these programs if they were slow.

    As mentioned above, virtualisation is a good option if you have the required system resources. Virtualbox is free and can do what you require.
     
  14. Tony

    Tony Registered Member

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    Theres firstdefense-isr rescue.
    Although it only has 2 snapshots, you can use one for testing purposes and if you dont like it, then you can copy/update from the other snapshot and restore the snapshot to how it was previously.

    No slowdown when booting up either.
     
  15. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

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    ShadowUser hasn't been really abandoned by its developers: It is still on sale with no discount (69 $, pricey considering current competition), but it hasn't been, alas, updated for Vista, presumably the reasons are with the high degree of piracy. I've been using it for years without any problems, although I must admit that to test programs and new configurations, First Defense ISR Rescue is more suitable by design (I do use it with great satisfaction on my Vista system). I hear that Drive Vaccine is similar to ShadowUser, but I haven't tried it hence I can't say anything.

    There's also 'Smart Restart' by Centurion Technologies, http://www.smart-restart.com/products.php which I'd like to have some feedback.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2008
  16. SpikeyB

    SpikeyB Registered Member

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    Do you have any examples of software you would like to test?
     
  17. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    Are you going to test something yourself?
    If so, then any "Microsoft.Net Framework" installation would be a good sampler:
    Code:
    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=262d25e3-f589-4842-8157-034d1e7cf3a3&displaylang=en
    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=0856EACB-4362-4B0D-8EDD-AAB15C5E04F5&displaylang=en
    http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=10cc340b-f857-4a14-83f5-25634c3bf043&displaylang=en
    Otherwise, in general, I'd be using it to test things like PhotoShop plugins, Windows Updates, and any new software I haven't tried before.
     
  18. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    I don't mind an "imaging" software in principle.
    My only concerns are:
    1) The space images take
    2) The resources software uses when I DON'T need it.

    Meaning, I'm concerned that the images created will be huge.
    And I'd like software that doesn't leave tasks and services on while I'm not using it.

    Any "imaging" suggestions, according to that criteria?
     
  19. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,

    If your windows / root partition is small (e.g. 20GB) and taken up only up to about 50%, then with good compression, you can compress the images of these drives down to 3-4GB.

    My personal example: a 8GB Windows C: drive used to produce a 2.5GB image, and after SP3, this goes up to 3GB. My Ubuntu root that takes about 5GB produces a 1GB image with bz2 compression.

    I have an external hard disk dedicated to keeping images from 4 machines, and all in all, in the last year, the space taken is approx. 50 images = 120GB or so.

    Mrk
     
  20. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    Thanks for your post! :)
    The examples put things into perspective.

    In my situation, the hard drive would be 160GB.
    With around 120GB used / 40GB free.

    I don't have an external hard drive.
    So I guess "imaging" isn't a good option for me.
    As I need speed and low space usage.
     
  21. farmerlee

    farmerlee Registered Member

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    You'd have to partition your hard drive so you have the operating system on one partition and personal data on another. That way your backup image size can be kept to a minimum which helps to speed things up. An image of my XP partition is around 2gb in size which only takes 2 minutes to restore.
     
  22. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    But here's my situation:
    160 GB hard drive...
    120 GB used...
    40 GB free space.

    Care to take a guess as to what size this image would come to?

    I can live with an image 10GB or under.
    But anything over that is a problem for me.
     
  23. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,

    What sort of things you got on your drive. What takes 120GB? Besides, if you were to repartition, as suggested, you could go a long way toward cutting that down.

    My estimate is approx. 50GB image size - too big and impractical.

    Mrk
     
  24. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

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    To do the kind of testing you are talking about you need to have adequate resources on your machine. Use of a VM machine would really be best, but honestly I don't think you have the resources on your hardware.

    I do the kind of testing you are talking about in a VM machine, and the directory for that machine is slightly over 60gb.

    Pete
     
  25. paulescobar

    paulescobar Registered Member

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    I'm a graphic artist.
    So files are mostly media like stock video, audio, and images.
    And installed software is media-related editors.
     
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