I have been on several Live Chat sessions with Acronis tech support over the past few days but my problem is still not resolved, so I'm asking here if anyone can advise me, before I switch to Norton Ghost or something else. What I want to do: My Win XP SP3 computer has a 100GB hard drive with about 65GB of data. I want to backup the entire PC (O/S and all) (create an image) to an external Seagate 320GB Free Agent Pro drive that comes with both Firewire (1394) and USB connections. Here is the problem: Initially, I tried the Firewire since it's supposed to be faster than USB 2.0. When I would launch TIH 2009, I select Full Backup, point to the external Seagate drive, without changing any of the settings (left compression and encryption at default levels) and clicked Proceed after completing the wizard. When the Operation Progress dialog box opens, sometimes it fails to initialize (it'll say "initializing" for many minutes, after which I just cancel and close out). If it (appears to) initialize, then during what it says is "1 of 2 - Creating partition image", the estimated time for the backup is anywhere between 26 hours and 50 hours (2 days 2 hours)! I have run chkdsk and defrag on both the internal (Seagate 100GB) laptop h/d as well as on the external backup drive and they both come up completely clean. If I wait and let it start the backup, it starts to creep along, and sometimes the estimated time will fluctuate between approx. 19 hours and 26 hours or something like that, but never lower than 19 hours. Out of curiosity, I ran a System State backup and it backed up 212MB in less than 3 minutes. So I know there is no problem writing to the ext. drive. After many, many online chat sessions with Acronis (the guys in India and in Russia), I finally was advised on how to make a bootable CD version using the ISO image to try to run the backup outside of Windows. I made that CD last night at around 9PM my time (it's now 11:40am the next morning, 14 1/2 hours later), rebooted from the CD and kicked off the backup without changing any parameters, as above. So here's what is now happening: In the Operation Progress dialog box, the Total progress: bar went from 0 to 100% complete in about 5 minutes, it really zipped through! and I was so excited...until..... it got to the end of the bar and then the Remaining time: said 25 seconds and it still, 14.5 hours later, says the same thing. The "Current operation progress:" bar is moving at a snail's pace, so slowly that it's barely visible, and after 14.5 hours, it's only at the letter "e" in progress, therefore about 1/3 of the way through. I was told by Acronis that the backup should be approx. 1 GB/minute or something like that. Even in the worst case scenario, it should not take 19-48 HOURS to complete this backup. I have also turned off my anti-virus and firewall (Kaspersky for both) in order to make sure nothing might be interfering, and nothing has helped. I need some serious investigation into this. Seagate tech support says that it's an Acronis issue; in fact, Acronis wrote their backup product ("Disk Wizard") which is a watered-down version of TIH, so there's no point in trying that. Please, if ANYONE has a concrete suggestion based on reality and his/her actual experience with this, I'd be very grateful. I'm not ruling out anything, including problems with my internal h/d or the external drive, even though they're both testing out as fine. Thanks. I'm at my wits end!