When I do windows image backup should I ...

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Frankfree, May 19, 2019.

  1. Frankfree

    Frankfree Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    Posts:
    83
    Should I leave and shut down all apps ? Is it advised ? I do not want to take any chances
     
  2. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Posts:
    8,346
    Location:
    U.S.A. (South)
    Its always been safe on this end doing backups while still using Windows.

    Does that mean the backup takes longer? Maybe a little.

    Anyone else?
     
  3. Minimalist

    Minimalist Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2014
    Posts:
    12,352
    Location:
    Here
    I know that it's not necessary but I always close all apps while backup is performed. But as I said it's not necessary since it uses VSS.

    EDIT: I'm talking about Macrium
     
  4. bellgamin

    bellgamin Very Frequent Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2002
    Posts:
    6,634
    Location:
    Hawaii
    To each his own -- I always make images outside of Windows -- before Windows starts. When a good, clean, untainted image is needed, it's a top priority. So I give the making of that image a top priority over all other computer activities. Maybe it's superstition on my part but -- if so -- so be it.
     
  5. wat0114

    wat0114 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2012
    Posts:
    2,561
    Location:
    Canada
    I do the same. Maybe my superstition too :)
     
  6. ZMsiXone

    ZMsiXone Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2017
    Posts:
    293
    Location:
    EUROPE/poland/germany
    im always booting from DVD drive: IMO its the easiest way to avoid problems. Im using acronis true image: this software is offering the option to create bootable external boot media (DVD or stick).
     
  7. bellgamin

    bellgamin Very Frequent Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2002
    Posts:
    6,634
    Location:
    Hawaii
    I use R-drive Image (RDI) because it is more simple than the others I tried (plus they have a very patient support staff -- a necessity in my case). I boot RDI from a stick & image to a portable external hard drive with a HUGE capacity -- holds several months of weekly images.

    I do a full image the first week of each & every month, then do differentials for the remaining weeks of that month. Differentials, NOT sequentials. Differentials are a bit slower but a lot more reliable, in my opinion.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2019
  8. guest

    guest Guest

    I do backup on the fly, never had issues.
     
  9. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Posts:
    20,481
    I do all my images from with in Windows as I take hourlyes. As to reliability, with Acronis I never took more than 5 incrementals as things got flaky. On the other hand when I was testing Macrium v6 i went out to 60 incrementals and never had a restore issues.
     
  10. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Posts:
    8,346
    Location:
    U.S.A. (South)
    I also do the same with Macrium my main Imager and can video edit-video watch classics with (2) browsers/several open windows from both and never had an image restore so much as burp! when Macrium put it back exactly as it was when taken with that sort of load.

    AND that is on a Windows 8.1 Gateway 4Gb RAM system still running HDD's. Macrium is a BEAST and is SOLID in and out.
     
  11. bellgamin

    bellgamin Very Frequent Poster

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2002
    Posts:
    6,634
    Location:
    Hawaii
    Umm... is that thar *beast* the one from 20,000 fathoms? :eek:

    Macrium is good, but too many options for my limited span of attention when reading help files.

    I prefer R-Drive Image, a simple app for lazy folks.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2019
  12. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Posts:
    8,346
    Location:
    U.S.A. (South)
    It has more options I care not to bother about (yet) for my purposes-as a backup image and storage on-the-fly type, the more intricate delicacy of all the additional features such as Scheduled Incrementals hourly, daily etc. is better suited for those who need and use them as a routine aka: @Peter2150-Highway Patrol :thumb:
     
  13. askmark

    askmark Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    Posts:
    389
    Location:
    united kingdom
    I don't shutdown applications, but I do limit the amount of disk changes made to the system disk during the backup, by not running applications that create a lot of disk writes or using explorer to copying large (gigabit) files.
     
  14. jphughan

    jphughan Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2018
    Posts:
    334
    Location:
    US
    Limiting disk writes is definitely important. Most people don't realize this, but the "copy-on-write" method used by VSS means that the size of a given snapshot grows after it's created, based on the amount of writes that occur going forward, until the snapshot is deleted (for temporary VSS snapshots) or a new one is created (for permanent VSS snapshots). Windows only allocates a certain percentage of a partition's size to storing VSS snapshots -- by default 10%, I believe -- so if you have a lot of writes while a temporary VSS snapshot exists, such as for creating an image backup, then two things can happen. First, as your temporary snapshot grows due to high write activity, Windows might end up purging some of your permanent VSS snapshots in order to keep your temporary snapshot available. Permanent VSS snapshots are used for things like Windows System Restore points and (on Windows Server) shadow copies. And second, if the write activity is so substantial that the temporary VSS snapshot alone exceeds the total capacity allocated for VSS snapshots on the partition, Windows will delete the temporary VSS snapshot, causing the backup to fail.
     
  15. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Posts:
    8,346
    Location:
    U.S.A. (South)
    Useful point. Thanks.

    While when I do my backups they almost always are within a live windows running, that doesn't mean business as usual although both Macrium/DS and especially my 8.1 units handle the extra writes very well. Proof in that the HDD's have outlasted anything compared to when I was on XP performing those same backup duties before.
     
  16. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,824
    Macrium v. 6.3 free edition here, reliable for years now. I image within Windows but I don’t use the computer during the process (full backup is around 12-13 minutes for 50-60 GB, and 4-5 minutes for differentials).
     
  17. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Posts:
    8,346
    Location:
    U.S.A. (South)
    So glad "differentials" is been brought up. With so much more emphasis on "Incrementals" seems the differences of those compete depending on user's preference of course.

    Either way there's not been much complaint over the years of a flurry over potential image backup distortions or failures that accounted for much in the way of serious issue.
     
  18. guest

    guest Guest

    I found out on my end, restoring a differential backup took way longer than an incremental.
     
  19. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,824
    I have no choice as the free version doesn't offer incremental back up. As a matter of fact I've just installed the trial version of the paid home version, so that I can test the incremental back up and the rapid delta restore, if speed is significantly increased I'll buy a license...
     
  20. guest

    guest Guest

    I remember testing restoring a differential, took 20mn opposed to incremental 5mn.
     
  21. reasonablePrivacy

    reasonablePrivacy Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2017
    Posts:
    906
    Location:
    Member state of European Union
    Unfortunately there is slight possibility of some corrupted/inconsistent data. Filesystem will be consistent, however backup could be taken in midst of some heavy changes to some binary file or database. Fortunately most databases for Windows are VSS aware (have VSS writer).
     
  22. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Posts:
    4,824
    Well, I can't believe the results of Macrium home paid version: incremental back up took 2 minutes, and even better delta restore took 2:45 minutes!
    It is so quick and convenient that it can be used to test programs, it really makes Shadow Defender redundant. At the end of the trial I will certainly get a license.
     
  23. EASTER

    EASTER Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    Posts:
    8,346
    Location:
    U.S.A. (South)
    :thumb:

    Never had a fail on this end either.

    Did have an interruption once where after doing several CHKDSK, Macrium actually managed to restore to a drive that in the next 2nd or so reboot went Kaput! I knew the drive was about toast and nearing full shutoff and Macrium even then finished restoring an image that I needed to pull some apps off of directly-and although the Macrium program BROWSE image feature could open the Image it was a test of will for me to see if the HDD had a little left to it where a restore might stick-And It Did!!
     
  24. jphughan

    jphughan Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2018
    Posts:
    334
    Location:
    US
    Rapid Delta Restore is pretty great. If there haven't been many changes since to the destination disk since the backup you're restoring from was originally captured, then restore operations typically only take a few minutes, whereas the Free version always performs a "traditional" restore that involves writing out the full partition contents. That advantage of essentially rolling back changes vs. restoring the whole partition is especially significant for users with partitions that contain a lot of data. Of course RDR only works when conditions actually allow it to be used. If you're restoring onto a completely different disk, then Reflect has to perform a "traditional" restore instead. Macrium wrote a blog about RDR here if you're curious. And I don't know if you ever have a reason to run a clone job on a recurring basis, but the paid versions of Reflect also include Rapid Delta Clone, which is the same concept in that after you initially clone Disk A to Disk B, subsequent runs of that job in order to update Disk B's contents will only have to clone the differences between A and B rather than rerunning the entire job.

    The difference in restore speeds wouldn't be down to Differential vs. Incremental except for MAYBE some additional overhead if you were restoring from an Incremental at the end of a long chain of Incrementals and Reflect therefore had to work through a lot of intermediate backups to derive the appropriate data to restore. But other than that, the performance would be identical, and the time difference you observed is much more likely attributable to the fact that Rapid Delta Restore was used in both cases, but in one case there was a greater degree of difference between the destination's current state and the backup you were restoring, so there was more to roll back.
     
Loading...
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.