Terminology

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by brasco, Apr 4, 2007.

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  1. brasco

    brasco Registered Member

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    I have read dozens of forum messages in futile hope of getting an answer to a question I have about using True Image 10, which I bought but cannot figure out how to use!

    I believe there is a lot of confusion (and mis-information) concerning the terms "clone" and "image."

    Could someone who is thoroughly familiar with the terms (and how they apply to True Image) respond to this message and set everybody straight on the subject.
     
  2. seekforever

    seekforever Registered Member

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    A clone is just like making a biological clone of sheep. You run the clone function and it makes a second disk look just like the first disk. The partition layout and files are all copied to the new disk so you have 2 disks that are identical. Since you have 2 disks you could consider one a backup in case the other failed but the real intent of the clone function is to use it when you get a new HD. You clone the old onto the new and then run from your new disk. Since newer disks are often bigger than older disks TI gives you various options in the cloning procedure to adjust partitions to make use of the extra space on the new drive.

    An image is intended to be used to make a backup of your bootable OS partition or any other partition. The contents of the source disk (the one being imaged) are read and compressed (if desired) and written into an archive file on the destination device. The destination device can be an internal HD, external HD, CD, DVD or tape. Since the image only contains the sectors that were actually used it is smaller than the HD unless it was totally full and is made even smaller if compressed. For this reason, depending on the size of your destination device you can store various numbers of images on it.

    The smallest unit an image can backup is a partition so you can make images of a partition, several partitions or all of the partitions on the whole disk. When you restore an image of a bootable partition the device will be bootable.

    There are lots of options that can be selected when making an image like compression amount, split-size so you can make the pieces the correct size to fit onto a CD or DVD or maybe you just like dealing with smaller files. An image of a half-full 250GB disk depending on the types of files on it could result in a single 200GB file!

    You can also have your image validated when you create it. Validating does not compare the data in the image with the data on the disk because if you make the disk while within Windows it is continuously changing. TI calculates a checksum or perhaps several as the archive file is created and includes them with the file. When you validate an image file it reads the archive and recalculates the checksum(s) and compares them with the stored value. If they don't agree perfectly the archive is declared corrupt. The amount of data being processed is typically several to tens of gigabytes and all you need is for one bad bit to happen to have archive declared corrupt and useless so it is imperative your hardware be in top shape.

    You can use the TI Mount command to mount an image. It gets mounted as if it were another disk on your PC and you can use Explorer to copy files out of the image. This is handy to retrieve one or a few files without needing to restore the whole image.

    Images do not use the OS's file system so they can run very fast. The other kind of backup which is intended for data files is the Files and Folders (FF)backup. It will NOT give you a bootable disk if you use it to restore your files. It uses the OS's file system and is thus slower.
     
  3. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

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    Hello brasco,

    Thank you for choosing Acronis Disk Backup Software.

    Please be aware that there are two approaches available:

    Clone Disk - migrates/copies the entire contents of one disk drive to another;

    Backup - creates a special archive file for backup and disaster recovery purposes;

    Please take a look at this FAQ article explaining the difference between Clone Disk and Backup approaches in more detail.

    Actually, Clone Disk approach is usually used to upgrade the hard drive (e.g. install a larger disk), while Backup approach is basically dedicated for the complete data backup and disaster recovery purposes.

    You can find the detailed instructions on how to use Acronis True Image 10.0 Home in the respective User's Guide.

    Thank you.
    --
    Marat Setdikov
     
  4. brasco

    brasco Registered Member

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    Thank you seekforever and Marat Setdikov. Now I understand.
     
  5. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    Cloning and backup don't jsut work for system/OS drives, they work for drives with other kinds of data on them too.

    I think "migrates" is the key term to remember regarding cloning.

    sh
     
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