system backup/restore procedure

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by calvin2s, Apr 16, 2008.

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  1. calvin2s

    calvin2s Registered Member

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    I used True Image 11 Home to create an exact copy of my 3GB C:\ drive onto a 120GB usb external drive. What a waste of space, eh? No way around that I suppose.

    Unfortunately, my bios does not support boot-from-usb. It does, however, look to the CD-RW drive (D:\) for a bootable cdrom. So in the event of a software crash or a C:\ hard drive crash so bad that Windows will not launch, I plan to boot from the Acronis installation CD and use Acronis to transfer the backed-up system from the external drive onto my C:\ drive...or onto a new C:\ drive if hard drive failure was the problem.

    My question to you is, Does that plan sound doable?
     
  2. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    calvin2s,

    Are you using images? 3 GB of imaged data would take less than 2 GB on your external HD.
     
  3. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    Calvin,
    Sounds like maybe there is confusion with the definitions of cloning and imaging. Check out page 10 of my beginners backup guide listed below for further details. As Brian has mentioned, imaging will do very nicely so you can use the external for other purposes of many more image backups.
     
  4. calvin2s

    calvin2s Registered Member

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    You are both correct...I have never understood the relationship between copies, images, clones, mounting (that term is a total mystery), etc.

    You understand that I'm looking for alot more than the ability to restore my data...heck, I have my data backed up on a usb flash stick...but what I'm looking to be able to do is recover my whole system without having to reformat, reinstall, re-anything. It sounds like you're saying I could do that with an image.

    Thank you for the quick help.

    calvin2s
    (who is now exploring the beginners' backup info and will probably come back with more newbie questions)
     
  5. nb47

    nb47 Registered Member

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    If I'm 'reading you right' , a restore will do that but you'll still have to re-run your updates.:D
     
  6. calvin2s

    calvin2s Registered Member

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    Negative. If I read YOU right, you are referring to the ability, after a disaster, to boot from the Windows installation cdrom, repair or reinstall Windows, re-download Windows updates, re-install those updates, reinstall applications (in my case Office), etc. That is exactly the labor-intensive user-unfriendly days-long procedure I definitely want to avoid.
     
  7. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    calvin2s,

    Correct. Restoring an image to your computer should take less than two minutes.
     
  8. nb47

    nb47 Registered Member

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    Well , I wasn't referring to using the Win disk-jus*puppy* t Acronis restore which is what I do.
     
  9. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    nb47,

    I'm confused. Why would you need to run any updates if you restored "yesterday's" image?
     
  10. nb47

    nb47 Registered Member

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    I don't use 'restores' every day so you would have to if you only did it every so often like I do(when something goes wrong with my computer). If you use it every day then you wouldn't have to obviously.
     
  11. calvin2s

    calvin2s Registered Member

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    Per Grover's suggestion above, I read the Beginner's Guide to creating a basic full disk archive and am clearer about the difference between cloning a disk drive and creating an image of the disk drive in an archive.

    I went ahead and created my first ever archive of my internal C: drive on my external usb drive.
    The next day I made an incremental archive of the same.
    In Windows Explorer, they look like

    Name________Size__________Type____________________DateModified
    Incremental.tib__466,374 KB__Acronis TI Backup Archive__4/18/2008 5:52 PM
    Full.tib_______5,396,177 KB__Acronis TI Backup Archive__4/17/2008 7:55 PM

    Assuming tomorrow I want to return my internal drive to its state on 4/18/2008, I will have to first restore the Full.tib and then restore the Incremental.tib, correct?
     
  12. Xpilot

    Xpilot Registered Member

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    No, just select the incremental. The restore will use both the files for the restore.

    Xpilot
     
  13. nb47

    nb47 Registered Member

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    I only restore every so often so If I go back several months I would have to restore the Win updates I 'lost' in the meantime since then. If you backup every day , that's a different story.I thought that's what he meant.:)
     
  14. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    calvin2s,
    If you have not done so, open Windows Disk Management and look at the arrangement of your partitions on your system drive. What you see there will match what you see on the backup "Partition Selection" screen or as illustrated on image B4 of my backup guide. Many people do not know whether they have diagnostic or recovery partitions. The Disk Management can be a big help in understanding your backup and restore options.
     
  15. calvin2s

    calvin2s Registered Member

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    Xpilot

    Thanks to you et al for the ongoing tutoring.

    So even tho the incremental file is less than 1 tenth the size of the full, it contains a link to the full.

    What if I move the Full.tib to a different location in the file tree and then still select the Incremental. Will the restoration process hang up...?...or will Acronis ask at some point to be pointed to the "missing" file?

    calvin2s
     
  16. winders

    winders Registered Member

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    calvin2s,

    What happens if you cross the street without looking both ways? Same deal with separating the full backup from the incremental one....don't do it.

    S-
     
  17. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    When you create a full backup and any number of incremental or differentials, these *.tib files are considered a backup set. All must be kept together in a single folder or root drive. You can make multiple copies and store each set in a different location for security. Whenever you copy or move a set, it is always prudent to validate the set (when booted from the TI CD) just to make sure nothing changed as a result of the movement.

    When performing a restore, the user must point TI to the exact location where the backup is stored and that can be any location of the user's choice.

    When performing a manual backup, the user can point TI to the location where you want the resulting backup to be stored.

    When performing an automated backup, the previous backup files must exist in the same location as previously specified, otherwise, TI will start over at its last completed backup file. For example, if you have created a full backup and 3 incremental (all stored in one folder), the incremental 1 & 2 must exist before it can perform a backup or restore of #3. Or, if you delete incremental #3 and #2, the next backup, it will perform a new #2 and then a new #3 at the proper time. The set must be sequential and every validation of an incremental will validate the entire set every time. It will take longer to validate than to perform the incremental.
     
  18. Xpilot

    Xpilot Registered Member

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    Just an additional note about validations. GroverH has already said that, when a validation is run all the parts of an image set are validated.
    This will apply even though some of the elements such as the base image have been validated before.
    There are further complications if you are using the special TI "backup locations" feature or are keeping your images in a secure zone.
    If you run a validation as part of the creation process ALL the backup sets in the "location" or "zone" will be validated. This applies to secure zone images when ever a validation is run. It is possible to only validate the last set in "locations" by running the validation as a seperate exercise.
    There are way to avoid the need to run validations but that is wandering off topic.

    Xpilot
     
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