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Windows 7 - System Image, Repair Disk, & ISO Image Questions

Q: Windows 7 - System Image, Repair Disk, & ISO Image Questions

I recently had problems with BSOD. I was able to fix the underlying cause, but this got me nervous. So I am thinking of starting a program of periodically creating system images of my laptop - both the C & D drives - so that I could restore my system in the event of hardware failure. Make sense?
I have some questions to make sure that I understand the underlying System Image & Repair disk process, & also when I would use a Windows 7 ISO image.
(1) Am I correct that when I restore from a system image of both C & D drives, that both drives are **totally** recreated?
(2) Will I still have a legal copy of Windows 7 when I restore using the system image?
(3) Should I make sure that I have a repair disk before I restore from system image? If so, why?
(4) Is it necessary to periodically recreate a repair disk? Or once a repair disk is created, it is good for any future repair that may be needed?
(5) There are sites where one can download a Windows 7 ISO image.   
    (i) Am I correct that restoring from this image just installs Windows 7 and no other programs? 
    (ii) Will I still have a legal copy of Windows 7 when I restore using a Windows 7 ISO image? 
    (iii) When would I restore using a Windows 7 ISO image rather than restoring from a System Image?
    (iv) What is the recommended site to download a Windows 7 ISO image?
(6) Now for an open-ended question: Is there anything else I need to be aware of?
Thank you.

Preferred Solution: Windows 7 - System Image, Repair Disk, & ISO Image Questions

I recommend downloading and running Reimage. It's a computer repair tool that has been proven to identify and fix many Windows problems with a high level of success.

I've used it in the past to identify and fix everything from blue screens (BSOD's), ActiveX errors, corrupt files and processes, dll/exe/sys errors, recover lost memory, Windows update problems, defragging, malware removal etc.

You can download it direct from this link http://downloadreimage.com/download.php. (This link will automatically start a download of Reimage that you can save to your computer.)

A: Windows 7 - System Image, Repair Disk, & ISO Image Questions

Users have (at least) two ways to go to overcome those unforeseen problems that occur.
a.  Make clones of the hard drive reflecting the O/S.
b.  Use backup software which creates a file which can be restored, item for item.
I have done both at some time...right now, I prefer making a clone of my O/S (dual-boot) partitions...while backing up data files on extra hard drives I have lying around.  User preference determines whether a user backs up...or creates a cloned image.
You might take a look at Macrium Reflect, a program that seems to do each pretty well.
Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - Information and download - http://www.macrium.com/reflectfree.aspx
Those ISO files of Windows 7...are covered by this pronouncement here at BC:  Recommending ISOs of Windows Recovery Discs or pre-made ISOs of WinPE-BartPE - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic382841.html .
In addition to being illegal...those .iso files...or any file NOT obtained from a legal, authorized source...are subject to reflect code, errors, malware...or something else that the user has not bargained for, IMO.  If I were a malware misanthrope...that would be my favorite vector...giving an unknowing public something "for free" that they have no desire to legitimately obtain.

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* Before I begin I will add that I am aware of the excellent tutorials available here and will be using them =) *
I need to migrate to a hard drive that already has windows 7 HP 64bit on it. I do not however want the registry information and all of the drivers and bloat-ware that reside in the destination HDD.
To my understanding I will just need to boot a system image of my old HDD on the destination HDD.

I need some confirmation that my understanding of the process is sufficient to complete the procedure without problems.

So here is how I understand I will do this :
1. Create system repair disc
2. Create system image disc
3. Place system image disc in the disc drive
4. Place destination hard drive in the laptop.
5. Boot to the disc containing the System Image
6. Follow instructions
7. Victory


Am I right?

Would I be able to achieve the same result with only using a repair disc from my old HDD?

Will I need to wipe the destination HDD?

A:System image/repair disc creation and use questions

Hello lolpsy,

I would recommend to save the system image to a separate external or internal hard drive. DVDs are just not reliable enough IMO.

1. Create system repair disc
2. Create system image, and save to separate hard drive
3. Connect drive that contains system image.
4. Place destination hard drive in the laptop.
5. Boot from system repair disc
6. Select to do a system image recovery
7. Follow instructions
8. Victory

Hope this helps,

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Hello all,
When I purchased my computer, a salesman recommended I make a system image in case of computer failure and said I should use a 32 GB external drive. So I took his recommendation and bought one of those USB types.
As I pulled up the application to perform this operation, I saw there was a link to make a system repair disk. So I decided to do that first. I had a dvd-rw 4.7 gb and use that. The down load went well.
Next I placed the USB device into the slot and started the download but about 20 minutes later, my computer asks me to place another disk to continue. Why? Is not the 32 gb usb enough to make a system image on usb?
So what do I need to do or check? I speak very little computerese.

A:System Image & Repair Disk

Originally Posted by rjordan393

Hello all,
When I purchased my computer, a salesman recommended I make a system image in case of computer failure and said I should use a 32 GB external drive. So I took his recommendation and bought one of those USB types.
As I pulled up the application to perform this operation, I saw there was a link to make a system repair disk. So I decided to do that first. I had a dvd-rw 4.7 gb and use that. The down load went well.
Next I placed the USB device into the slot and started the download but about 20 minutes later, my computer asks me to place another disk to continue. Why? Is not the 32 gb usb enough to make a system image on usb?
So what do I need to do or check? I speak very little computerese.

Windows will not recognize a thumb drive (usb) for system images.
Try using an external hard drive, (if you have access to one).

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I periodically create a system image using an external hdd and a dvd.

I've run out of dvd's and have only got some cd-r's of 750Mb

Will they be big enough?

A:System Image Repair Disk - Min CD-R Capacity Mb?

More than likely not, however, depending on your backup program (I use Acronis True Image 2011) it gives me the option to boot into the recovery mode before the computer boots, so I don't need a DVD to recover from a corrupt OS...

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Hi there!

I just bought a new laptop that comes with Windows 8.1. I want to upgrade to Windows 10.

My first question is, do I do a System Image or Recovery Disk -prior- to the upgrade, or after?

My second question is, is it sufficient to just do a Recovery Disk if I haven't installed anything yet? The main thing I can't figure out through my research is if I create a Recovery Disk, will that include my current operating system? Or is the operating system only backed up through a System Image?

I -think- my final question is, if I put all of this onto a flash drive, when I plug my flash drive in, is it going to try to reset my computer every time? Or only if I plug it in before I boot up?

I'm really not savvy to deal with a lot of the terminology I see on the web when I try to research these things on my own, so hopefully someone can answer my questions as if they're talking to a 5 year old

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Hi all,

I used the Win 7 Back up & Restore to create a system repair disk plus a system image on an external HD. I'm also backing up my files/documents. Is that enough to do a complete clean re-install of everything in case of a worst-case scenario?

Another question for perhaps another thread: do you make those Rescue disks offered by AV software?


A:System Repair Disk + Image + Backing up files : is it enough?

Just my personal opinion FWIW.
Some people have reported less than perfect results using the native Windows 7 backup and restore tool. For that reason another free product called Macrium Reflect is often recommended instead of (or in addition to) the Windows 7 tool. I use them both and make full system images once a week.

Imaging with free Macrium

How often one should make a new system image really depends on how much data is changed on the drive being imaged. For some folks once a month may be enough. For others, a new system image every night may be required. So I don't think there's a one-size-fits-all answer.

Again, just my personal opinion about rescue disks. They can come in handy for some folks. Usually those people who don't have a system image and backed up files. Assuming a computer goes belly up because of software issues (a badly corrupted operating system, malware, etc) then a recent system image should be all you need to get up and running again. But if a computer stops working because of hardware issues, then I don't think a system image or a rescue disk will do you any good until the failed hardware is repaired or replaced.

As far as a system repair disk goes, it can be used use to boot your computer to the system recovery options to help recover your Windows 7 installation if you don't have a Windows installation disc, can't find your Windows installation disc, or can't access the recovery options provided by your computer manufacturer. A system repai... Read more

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There is a large reference book on Win 7 called Windows 7 Inside and Out.

Even in this big book only a couple pages are on repair. I have recently moved to Win 7 from XP.
The repair routine on the XP installer cd got me out of a lot of jams.

But now it seems I need to make a separate repair cd on Win 7 through the System Image Recovery.
Even this assumes that Win7 is going does it not?

How can I build a repair cd that boots and restores the MBR where the usual problem
is after an unexpected power out or shutdown?

My most common instance of having the HD go bad is having an interrupted clone job
using Norton Ghost.

If image recovery is the wrong place to start, please give the how - to to make
a bootable repair cd/dvd.

A:Build a Repair disk with Win7 System Image Recovery

Seasons Greetings
Listen to me. I and many members of this forum, do not get overly involved with repairs etc. Just download the free Macrium Reflect, it allows you to make an image on an external hard drive. No matter what your problem, just repair with a current image. It saved me several times. I do not know about Norton, but using Macrium is the place to start.
If you still want a repair disc, this will help
System Repair Disc - Create

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I am trying create a backup image of my Win7 OS on a system that has these drives:

DISKPART> list volume

Volume ### Ltr Label Fs Type Size Status Info
---------- --- ----------- ----- ---------- ------- --------- --------
Volume 0 J DVD-ROM 0 B No Media
Volume 1 I DVD-ROM 0 B No Media
Volume 2 D Win NTFS Partition 154 GB Healthy
Volume 3 G NTFS Partition 143 GB Healthy
Volume 4 E Games NTFS Partition 298 GB Healthy
Volume 5 System Rese NTFS Partition 100 MB Healthy System
Volume 6 H NTFS Partition 297 GB Healthy
Volume 7 F Application NTFS Partition 298 GB Healthy
Volume 8 C NTFS Partition 119 GB Healthy Boot
Volume 9 K PATRIOT NTFS Removable 29 GB Healthy
The available space for the volumes listed varies from 29GB (K) to 218GB (F), the backup requires 25GB available storage to complete the image creation. No matter which drive selected for saving the image, the backup fails. The error message goes a long way about not enough disk space, please see the image below...

Creating system repair disk fails with an unspecified error as well, which is ok in a sense; I do have retail version of Windows 7.

A little background how the current volumes came about...

Drive H an... Read more

A:Backup to image, create system repair disk fails...

I think the error is referring to shadow volume space available on the 100MB system reserved partition. 100MB being less than the 500MB specified means that it needs 50MB of free space for a shadow copy.
Go to "Disk Management" and see how much free space you have on your 100MB system reserved partition.
If this is the problem:
In time it generally clears itself. But there are a couple of more immediate changes that can be made. One is to increase the size of the 100MB partition, the other is to transfer the boot functions to the Windows partition. You may need further advice on how to go about this.

Edit: I wouldn't have the system reserved and boot on different drives. So getting rid of the 100MB system reserved on E: may be the best way forward.

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My company jettisoned our IT Department and contracted for IT services with an outside firm. Field personnel provided with laptop or desktop (or both) are now required to perform a System Image once per week and, in addition, to create a System Repair CD/DVD each week as part of the System Image process.

At the outset this appears to be overkill. No reason was provided for the change from simple backup to System Image, which is a time-consuming process. Equally confounding is the requirement for a new System Repair CD/DVD each week.

I'm a bit of a novice-what is the value of a System Image performed weekly and creating a new System Repair CD/DVD on a weekly basis?

A:System Image & System Repair Disk

Images allow you to restore your PC to how it was. Quite different to backing up files and folders. They allow you to recover from (e.g.)
- ransomware
- disk failure
- user error
- unbootable PC
- uncorrectable error
quickly and without technical help by restoring your PC to a previous working state.

Your system configuration evolves as you know, so updates are necessary.

However, there are more robust solutions than the built-in system image, and Macrium Reflect is strongly recommended here. It supports the generation of differential images (free edition) where only changes are saved in a smaller faster image file.

People have reported difficulty in using Backup and Restore here from time time.

Backing up to remote storage would be faster and more convenient than managing DVDs, but then, DVDs can't be hacked(!). (But nor can offline storage of course).

It takes me just a few minutes to update my system image with Macrium- with SSD + USB3.

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Hello all.. Long time Dell user and prior frequent forum visitor, so this question  may seem very basic. Sorry.
I just purchased an Inspiron 5368 (got a new one at the outlet for a good price and thus far am VERY impressed with the machine) and have a back up question.
If I create System Image onto a USB hard drive inside windows 10 and also create the System Repair USB drive, could I use that if I ever had a hard drive failure? I am thinking...

A) replace hard drive with bare hard drive.
B) Boot to Repair USB Drive.
C) direct it to reinstall my System Image.
D) have basically the same system (other than the new hard drive...)
Seems correct from what I know, but just want to make sure. I tend to take backups seriously... Currently use Acronis, but don't actually have it installed anywhere to create the boot USB drive, just boot from the install CD and it works fine. But the 5368 has no optical drive so plan on using the above method if it will achieve the goal should the need arise.

Thanks in advance... I know people here are great - a reason that every laptop I have purchased has been a Dell (except for an Acer I got once on Black Friday as a gift for a relative).

A:Windows 10 System Image / System Repair disc?

Thank you for writing to us!
You are correct in saying how you can back up your operating system on to external media.The link below will give more accurate information and also help you set it up on your system.
Kindly private message the service tag and email address.

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I have a Windows 10 system image created with the Windows 7 Backup - Create System Image. My PC does not have a CD drive. I've tried creating a USB and SD cards, but they won't boot. I have access to a WHS 2011 system with the hotfix to allow it to backup
Windows 10 PC's. WHS can create a USB restore key on a USB stick. Can I use the WHS 2011 stand alone restore key to restore a Windows 7 system image?

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can any of you please explain what a disk image is? i gather it's different from just copying everything from one hd to another, thru windows' "my computer" window.

does a disk image copy everything over exactly as it is on the old hd (for example, do installed programs on the old hd end up as installed in the new location?)?

is a disk image the best way to back up a hd?

is it possible to copy pieces of a hd to a cd-r (i know there's a space limitation on cd's) & copy it back to another hd, or is that not really the same as a disk image.

also -- are there any good freeware/shareware utilities out there for this?

sorry for such a basic, goofy question.


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I am wishing to install another level of computer backup on my 98se system-either
1. Symantec (formerly Roxio) GoBack,
2. Drive imaging. (The best rated appear to be Acronis True Image or PowerQuest Drive Image.)

I would, however, like to know something about each method that I have not been able to discover through the respective software sites or various reviews (CNET, PCMag , etc.)

Regarding GoBack:

How far back would I be able to go, given that I will be setting aside roughly 4GB space to GoBack. Would it be possible to take a snapshot after setting up my system (after a format), then not run GoBack until I am about to make another major change, then close it /disable it again until the next major change, and so on?
The reason I would want to do this, is that I find that problems often don't appear necessarily directly (or even soon) after any change to the system. Rather it can depend on when the program/process (that is causing the problem) is run. For example, I have recently had a conflict between my flatbed scanner and film scanner. I had not used the film scanner for a few months, so who knows when the cause of the conflict was first introduced, or what indeed it was?
Apparently, Goback keeps taking its "snapshots" continuously until the allocated space is used up, then starts deleting the earliest snapshots (to release more space). To me this does not appear enough to cover months of snapshots.
(In fact everywhere mentions a time scale of o... Read more

A:A couple of questions re: GoBack & Acronis True Image/PowerQuest Drive Image

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Hi, I am trying out windows 7 backup, hoping at last that I won't need a 3rd party backup solution.  So far so bad! My first problem is how ridicilously slow the backup is, but this has been discussed at length elsewhere.  My second problem is the backup stalls when I try to backup a folder which I know has got various bits of malware in.  I am an IT pro and use the files in this folder for testing purposes.  OK fair enough I guess, although I think the backup should handle this event a bit more elegantly.  So I've zipped and password protected the offending files to hide them from the AV (security essentials by the way) The final problem which I just can't understand is that when I try to create an image of my system drive, backup wants to add my D drive (which is purely a data drive) to the image.  My D drive is huge and I don't want to include it in a system image.  I keep my system drive lean and mean for exactly this purpose but now I can't back it up because the total size of C and D drives combined exceed the capacity of my backup drive. I know for a fact that the D drive has no consequence to the system boooting or operating, I have disconnected it and windows boots up just fine.  In computer management the D Drive is not showing up as a system drive, so why does windows think it is?  And why isn't there a power user mode wher I can choose exactly what I want in a system image, I understand you're trying to make windows easy to use for the average Joe, bu... Read more

A:Windows 7 Backup - System image includes non system disk

I suggest you check your hard drive jumpers. There should be only one Active drive. If you disconnect the data partition the Active partition will be changed. We are not clear why the partition will be Active partition when you connect it.
You may open Disk Management, set the 100MB system served partition or your Windows partition as Active and check the result again.Arthur Xie - MSFT

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I have the following issue. I have backed up drive letter C; which has windows 8.1 on it using recovery-> system image backup and selected partition Gthe same HDD). I then realized that I am running out of space on that partition. Right click on WindowsSystemImageBackup folder (partition G-> Properties => show 0 bytes. But that partition has some very little space after backing up. So I think that the backup image is not 0 at all. If I double click it it ask me to provide admin permission...

So, my question: How do I move the backup to an external HDD. Can I just cut+paste it? Or it will now work anymore? Also, if I have other pc (same configuration) will I be able to restore it on that pc using my extrenal HDD.

Thank you in advance.

A:Windows 8 system image backup move to another disk

I suggest you try - Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - Information and download - {The Standard version}
It's so much easier than what you are doing.

Someone here will probably come along with advice on how you are doing things.

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Hi, I have a laptop that runs Windows 8 (64 bit), and the hard drive is apparently a dynamic (as opposed to basic) disk. My problem comes when I try to make a backup image of my active drive. I know a lot of backup software has troubles making an image of a dynamic disk. Now after researching, I know that Windows 8 comes with its own imaging tool, "Windows 7 File Recovery". I tried to create a basic partition, and used the file recovery tool to create an image file, but the file would not be saved, maybe because the partition itself is on the same dynamic hard-drive (the error said something about the partition not being large enough etc... even though I made it 40GB).

My question is, is the native system imaging tool of Windows 8 unable to copy a dynamic drive, or is it because I need to save the image file to some place other than the hard drive (maybe a whole bunch of DVDs, since it is an option). The last computer that I own is as old as a dinosaur, so I really did not keep up with all these advancement- I just feel that dynamic format is a beast to work with. Any help in the matter is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

A:creating a system image of Windows 8 on a dynamic disk

Making a backup to an external USB disk (relatively cheap) or even to DVDs is always a good idea anyway , otherwise , if the internal disk goes down , you've lost your backup...

I make 3 backups , 1 on a seperate internal disk , then copy that to my networked storage drive (kept elsewhere in the house) and also to an external ESATA drive.

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Hi everyone. First post at BC.
I'm trying to restore from a system image to the  single 1TB HDD that is working from my RAID 0 Array after one of the member disks gave up the ghost, until I replace the other one, but unfortunately it would appear that even though my system image is only around 500GB and I'm restoring to a 1TB disk it fails because the destination partition needs to be as big or bigger than the original partition from which the image was made. Now I don't know if that means the entire RAID disk ie 1.8 TB or just the original C drive (virtual disk) with a partition around 900 GB. I can't remember exactly but if it was bigger than the current 931 GB partition it will fail. At least I hope that is the situation, as all I need to do is replace the second disk and rebuilt the RAID Assembly. My question is now: I know that you need to have 2 identical drives for RAID 0 but how identical do they need to be? Do they need to be the same make and model as well as the same size. I presume they both need to have the same spin speed ie 7,200 rpm, but what about cache size and SATA type eg II or III. In other words can I buy a similar spec HDD to go with the original working one or would I need to get 2 new identical drives as the original is at least 4 years old?
Thanks in advance. 

A:Restoring from a Windows 7 System Image to New Hard Disk

Did you format the disk before adding it to the array?

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Below is an image of my drives the hp recovery drives has my old system image file for windows vista which came with my pc i have upgraded to windows seven now i wanna know how can i delete the hp recovery drive and make that memory part of my main harddrive or/and how can i make a windows seven system image and replace the vista system image with the windows seven system image and just so im confirming that I know what im talking about a system image is just so u can erase everything off your pc and start back from that specific point someone please correct me if im wrong thanks

Uploaded with ImageShack.us

A:how to replace my vista system image with a windows seven system image

Hi bigboi1972. Well this should be fairly straight forward. (I stress the should).

Firstly, a system image is out (and your definition is correct by the way thats exactly what a system image is). That drive is waaay too small to make a system image of your C drive.

However if you get some more storage, a system image can be made from Backup and restore centre in Windows 7.

So to remerging it with your drive. Can you please post a screenshot of your Disk Management Screen? go start right click computer, and click manage, then go to Disk Management. that will help to see whether what you want to do will be possible using Windows own inbuilt tools or whether you need a 3rd party app

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Hello everybody.
I have 3 HDD, 500GB that I use for storing files, downloads and games - all the stuff I don't need much. Other is 1TB that holds 2 disks, 100GB system disk and remaining space for programs, music, documents - important stuff. And the third is 1TB and I want it to be used as a backup HDD. So what I want is to have a complete backup of system disk and important stuff and ignore the 500GB HDD. I set the backup to be performed everyday at 4 am since I don't turn off my PC. Recently I noticed that system image started to require that 500GB disk. I was wondering why? All it has is a folder with one game that I didn't even install - just copied, and a Downloads folder. I installed Dues Ex 3 on this disk but removed since. Can I somehow manually find the reson for this disk to be necessary for system image and eliminate it?

So what I need is to always have a most recent backup of one 1TB HDD on another 1TB HDD. And it would be nice to have a system saved as well so if my HDD crashes I won't have to reinstall everything. If this is too much to ask from Windows 7 I guess I'll just have the files backed up, without the system.

A:Hard disk required for Windows system image, though it shouldn't be

Hello Pokrishka, and welcome to Seven Forums.

On the 1TB HDD that you want to use to save system images to, did you do any of the following:Move the page file to it, or set to have a page file on
Move any user folders to it
The HDD or a partition on the 1TB HDD is listed with "system" in Disk Management

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Hi all
When i create a new system image on the same drive as an old one am i right in thinking the old one is overwritten because when i try to restore from an image i only have the option to recover from the lasest saved image.If this is the case why is there an option to delete older system images to save space on your disk.Ithought it would work more like system restore and use date stamps to restore ur system
Any help gratefully recieved thankyou

A:system image a few questions

Whenever I do a system image on an external hard drive I always rename it to include a date/time. Otherwise, if I create a new system image it will overwrite the previous default WindowsSystemImage. If memory serves, on the occasions I forget to rename an earlier image I'll get a prompt that older images might be overwritten, do I want to proceed.

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I did my first backup using Windows 7 built-in backup and restore last week. Chose to let windows decide what to backup and also do a system image (basically the default settings). It took quite a long time, almost 4 hours.

Tonight it did its weekly scheduled backup and another sytem image. Since it only copied any new files that part went fast but the system image took a long time, almost 1.5 hours.

When I look at manage space the system image is using 124GB. This seems huge. I thought it should be maybe 20GB or so. Data files being backed up are 71GB. Other files are 4GB for a total of almost 200GB.

This is a relatively new computer so why is the system image so large? Is there a way to verify that it should be that large? Will it always take so long to do the system image?

A:Questions re: backup and system image

The image file also contains you data if it is on the same partition. Also you have done two images backups and this is reporting both of them. Windows sets aside a certain amount of space (I think about 20% of your backup drive) and keeps as many images as it can in this space. So the actual image size is about 60MB which is about the same as mine. You might want to read this tutorial Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup by Brink.

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I made a system image with the built in feature of Windows 7 following this tutorial Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup

Today I made another but the first one made was erased and replaced with the new one. According to the tutorial Windows automatically erases older images once they take up more than 30% of the space on the back up location. I only had the one image on there and it was no where near 30% of the space. Why was my older image erased?

A:Creating system image questions.


It seems that it only makes one and deletes the other, always.

In any event this is what you do.

Make a system image, now. Put it on an external hard drive and forget about it.. Every month make a new one and keep it on the Hard Drive in the computer.

As time goes by you may need to use the image, because of a virus or your hard drive went down, either way you cannot or should not use the one on the internal. Wow, you have problems. Wait you made one and put it away.

You can use this for image.

Good Luck

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Hi everyone.

I want to make an upgrade from Windows 7 32-bit to Windows 7 64-bit.

The first question, I have 2 internal hard drives (C and D) and 2 external hard drives, when I do a backup of system image, which hard drives will be included in the backup?

The second question, is it possible to do a backup of system image on Windows 7 32-bit and restore it on Windows 7 64-bit? Will it cause issues?

A:Couple questions about system image

Hi and welcome to TSF are you using windows back up Backup and Restore - Microsoft Windows.
I would say no to the system image as the image would over write the 64 bit, better to just back up your data,music,photos etc and you can choose where you back up to
32-bit and 64-bit Windows: frequently asked questions

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I'm trying to use True Image 11 to image the system partition of my laptop. When I get to the place where it asks me to select the partition to image, there are two: the main NTFS system partition and a small recovery partition. Should I select both or just the system partition? I have heard that the recovery partition must be in a certain place on the HD to be usable. If so, and if I needed to restore the image , the recovery partition might not be restored to the same place and would therefore be unusable. Any advice on how to proceed here? Thanks.

A:Using Acronis True Image to image disk with hidden recovery partition

you should image it to the recovery partition, although it may not be a good idea to have it on the same HDD
I myself use an external drive which is probably the safest

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Ok, I have read and read and cannot find the answer.

I have a system image that was saved to a maxtor one touch ext HD via USB. This was created using W7 image making system. I am trying to copy the image to my new HDD (internal) 1TB. The problem is when I go to recovery>advanced options>restore from image and reboot, the PC cannot find the image. I can click advanced options and search for a driver and actually see the drive and the image folder/zips but W7 cannot detect it. I have also copied this image to a internall HDD because I thought it may be the USB. I have not changed any BIOS settings as I am using W7 on the 1TB HDD and trying to restore to that from either the Dnetouch or the F:internal HDD. Neither times will it find the image.
1. Do I need to use an alternate program like paragon or clonezilla
2. When the image is saved, it is the name of my pc. Example: Fesktop64-PC. Does it need to be in a folder or the image be a specific name? Ive seen WindowsImageBackup as a possiblity.

What do I need to do? Seems the hangup is that when trying to restore, windows just does not see the image?

I know this has been covered some, but I could not find specific answers

Windows 7 64bit

A:System Image Backup Questions and Cannot be found

If the image was created with Windows 7 imaging then the image must be called WindowsImageBackup and must be a root folder in the backup drive. You need to boot your PC either from a Windows 7 repair disk or the Install disk and select repair my computer. From there you have the option to restore your computer.

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dell 1705 laptop running xp pro upon startup....numerous "Bad image" messages appear. i.e. "msmsgs.exe -bad image", "windows search .exe - bad image", "cl.exe-bad image", "mcagent_main_hidden_window_mcagent.exe -bad image" and 10-12 similar "bad image" messages. I also get message "this application is not valid windows image- please check against installation diskette".
Applications do eventually boot up and function.
Am also unable to open Outlook Express and open Mcafee and other icons in apps tray above desktop.
Did full scan with Updated Macaffee and Malwarebyte...no infections detected. I am at a loss as to what todo next. Please help

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I have just finished a System Repair on my Windows 7 using repair ISO, and I'm not sure if I should do a system image backup before deleting old files with Disk Cleanup, or delete them after I've done a Repair Disc and System Image as well. I'm also afraid to delete anything at this stage. Would it be safe to delete Restore Points and Shadow Copies at this stage (I only did repair today), or should I wait a week or so?
I guess what I'm asking is when and what to delete and when to create a System Image and Repair Disc. New to all this and don't want to muck it up, so any help I can get would be very much appreciated. I have printed out your tutorials to follow on Disk Cleanup and removing $Window.~Q file.
Thank you

A:When to delete old files and create System Image after System Repair

Make your system image now, using Macrium Reflect. You will be able to return to this point regardless of what happens.
Now delete your restore points and then make a new one, so that you can fix any future problems.
Now make another image.
You, also, want to download the free Macrium Reflect and make your images on an external hard drive. You will be able to save as many as you want.
Following these instructions you cannot go wrong. You can always come back to what you have right now.
Macrium Reflect Free

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I recently had to return my HP Pavilion g7 Windows 8 64- bit only laptop to the manufacturer for repair under warranty. Prior to this I created a system image as the Hard Disc was going to be replaced. Having now received the repaired laptop
I have been trying to restore the saved image. I watched the microsoft video on the subject and followed the instructions implicitly. However having arrived at the point where I clicked NEXT to accept the <Use latest image> option screen and then landed on the screen entitled <RE IMAGE YOUR COMPUTER....... CHOOSE ADDITIONAL RESTORE OPTIONS> the message I then received was:

<To restore this computer Windows needs to format the drive that the Windows Recovery environment is currently running on. To continue with the restore shut down this computer and boost it from a Windows installation disc or a system repair disc and then try the restore again. If you don't have a system repair disc you can create one now.>

Well I did have one which I had prepared at the same time as I created the image system but the laptop wouldn't boot from it.................. so I went through the entire procedure again and then pressed the CREATE DISC tab. The next instruction was:

<Select a CD/DVD drive and insert a blank disc into the Drive> Ok, I did that ! Then I pressed the CREATE DISC tab.............only to get the message <System repair disc could not be created. The system cannot find file specified ( 0x80070002)>... Read more

A:System image restore & system repair disc problems

Hi, I just did a system image restore the other day, and I didn't have to use a recovery disc or go through any of those steps you mentioned.
After it scans your system for other images I presume it see's the one you made on the other external hdd. If so make sure to tick select a system image when you get to the "use the latest image available (recommended)" screen prompt. From there it should be pretty straight forward to recovery. If you see reformat/repartition drives is greyed out on the next screen prompt just ignore it and just click next.

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One of the chief complains about Windows 7 was how much space an installation required. Microsoft notes that a 32-bit installation needs at least 16GB of storage while the 64-bit variant commands 20GB. While not a massive amount of space...

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A:Windows 10 reclaims wasted disk space through system file compression, elimination of recovery image

I like it! It's astounding how quickly storage space goes by when using an SSD. I upgraded to 120GB after red-lining my old 60GB SSD, and am upgrading to a 240GB SSD since I red-lined my current drive. Every little bit counts.

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Hi all, I'm creating a backup system image of my Z580 windows 8.1 pro installation as I don't have a onekey recovery partition available. I'm using this guide How To Create A Backup System Image/ Repair Boot Disk in Windows 7,8 and 10 My question is, is it possible to put these both on a USB 3 flash drive? Or is that not feasible, I.e. I have to put the system image on flash and the repair boot disk on a CD/DVD?

Thanks for any help in advance, Pete

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im trying to reset off of a old system image off my external hard drive (Western Digital), but when I try to find it, it says none can be located. If i search for any drives I can see the auto play (Which starts it up) as one of the drivers, but not the actual drive itself (That contains the system image). Does anyone know how I can access the drive? And sorry if how I wrote it is confusing, if you need me to explain better I'll try. There's nothing wrong with my pc btw, i just trying to go back. So I can access all of windows 7 normal functions, its not broken or anything.

A:can't find system image in repair mode

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I normally use Acronis True Image for backup and recovery. Fine for file and folder recovery, but I want a reliable full system image of the Windows 7 PCs before upgrading to Window 10. I've just discovered that the Acronis bootable recovery system could not read always my backups so I'm trying the Windows Backup and Restore utility.

For some reason I get an I/O error when backing up to a Western Data 3 TB USB 3 external drive. (Interestingly Acronis writes to the disk with no problem, and, after a few false starts, the recovery system has no problem reading it.) Before I research this more, is there any reason the Windows Backup and Restore utility would have trouble creating a system image backup on a 3 TB USB 3 external drive?

The backup seems to be working fine to an old Seagate 2 TB USB 2 external drive. Is there any way to verify the backup once it is created? The Acronis recovery system had trouble reading backup fines on this disk even though Windows (and Acronis TI 2015 running on Windows) had no trouble reading and writing. I want to make sure the Microsoft recovery system does not have the same problem. But I don't want to do an actual recovery just to validate the backup.

And finally, Process Explorer shows no disk I/O even though the backup seems to be progressing (slowly). Is this I/O somehow hidden. My Kaspersky security software does show I/O activity.

A:Create system image utility - some general questions

Ok. I found the cause for the error when trying to create the system image backup on my WD 3 TB drive. Searching for error code 2155348010 I found several hits. Many large external drives - not just WD - now use a sector size of 4096 bytes rather than the 512 bytes expected by the image copy creation utility.

One such explanation is at

WD has a utility to reformat its drives and turn on support to emulate 512 byte sectors, but that lowers performance. And I would have to backup and restore my backup disk because the reformatting obviously clears the drive. Not worth it since I've now created the system image on another drive (temporarily borrowed from another PC).

I've read the Win8 supports the 4096 byte sector size. Hopefully Win10 does, too.

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I want to use the "windows system image backup tool" to an external hard drive which is a backup that already contains
other folders from several computers that I need to keep.
Ive never done this B4 so these are baby questions ; )
Will the image creator erase any of that info already stored on the external drive if I backup the system image to that drive?
is the windows image creator a good tool to do this (any problems with it that are known)?

is there some better image backup creator? if so which and why?

any help appreciated

A:Questions about creating a system Image backup - a bit coinfused

While I do not know about Windows 10 backup/restore utilities, I do know Macrium Reflect [free and pay-for]. MR will not delete anything on your ext HD unless you "tell it to do so" via its purging choices. I recommend two ext HDs getting your OS and data partitions backups.

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When I upgraded to Windows 7, I bought a new mobo, graphics card, etc... I installed Windows 7 on a new 128GB SSD drive (C: ), and then pulled my old 1TB drive with Windows XP on it from my old machine and installed it as D:.

When I try to go to "Backup and Restore", and click "Create a system image", Backup and Restore misidentifies my old 1TB drive as a System disk, so I can't create a backup on it, and Windows demands that it be part of the backup, even though it's mostly just documents on this drive (there are some programs installed on this drive - Steam and Microsoft Flight - is having software installed to this drive enough to make Windows think it's a system drive?)

I've already marked the D: drive as "inactive", deleted D:\Windows and all the cruft associated with it (pagefile.sys, etc...). Disk Management shows C: as "Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, Primary Partition", and shows the "System Reserved" partition on the same drive (the D: drive wasn't plugged in when I installed Windows 7.) Disk Management shows D: as "Primary Partition", and that's it.

diskpart "details disk" shows this for D:

DISKPART> detail disk

Disk ID: 9A9E9A9E
Type : ATA
Status : Online
Path : 0
Target : 1
LUN ID : 0
Location Path : PCIROOT(0)#ATA(C00T01L00)
Current Read-only State : No
Read-only : No
Boot Disk : No
Pagefile Disk : No
Hibernation File Disk : No
Crashdump Disk : ... Read more

A:Backup->Create System Image misidentifies disk as system disk

Based on what you've said it is puzzling. I'd be tempted to take a simple approach - backup my data on the old HDD and run a quick format.

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I have been trying to a system image (Windows 8) and keeps telling me to insert a blank disk and mark it, Computer Name, Date and Disk #. It keeps telling me to install one and mark it #1 every time the current disk (DVD) is full, also the status bar does not show any advancement in the process. The other 2 machines I have and did a system image on asks you to insert a disk with the numbers going in sequence, 1, 2, 3 etc.

A:System Image Keeps asking for the Same disk

Hello Jackman,

Do you have a hard drive to save the system image to instead?

I find DVDs terribly unreliable for system images.

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Hi Y'all,
I'm new to the forum and to Windows 8, and I need some help. I have a new Gateway DX4870 desktop computer running Windows 8. Before I load it up (and possibly screw it up), I want to create an image of the hard drive to DVD?s for protection.
I have used Power Quest Drive Image for years with my Windows XP machine, but apparently that product is now defunct.
I have tried Nova Backup, Shadow Protect, and Image for Windows. None of these will create a bootable disk to use for restoring an image if Windows is inop. They claim to, and they burn something to disk, and say 'completed successfully', but none are bootable.
Yes, my computer will boot from a bootable disk. I made one with Recovery Management in Windows just to prove the computer will boot from a bootable disk. It works.
Norton Ghost and Paragon say they do not support Windows 8.
Does anyone have successful experience with an imaging backup product which will create a hard disk image to DVD's, and a bootable disk to restore said image on a Gateway DX computer running Windows 8.
Thanks for any help.
Cheers Tally

A:System disk image

There are two aspects to this.

1) Bootable recovery program. Most imaging products will make a bootable recov cd/flash to load the recovery program into memory. When it has loaded, you can remove the cd/flash

2) The backup image. This can be placed on an HD,network share, dvd's or usb.

You navigate to the backup image after booting up the recovery program

I don't know of any that have them both on the same removable boot media.

Some will create a special backup partition on an HD - that will contain the bootable recovery program, and your backup images.

I don't know about Norton , but Paragon HDM Pro and HDM Suite now support win8. The other products will be updated soon.

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I have a friend with a laptop that has a failing hard drive. It will boot, but only after about an hour or so. I plan to replace the drive, but she's lost her recovery disks.

I was going to pick up a new drive and put it into a USB drive enclosure and then image her HD over to it. Is this even possible? What software would I use for this if it is?

I can always stick the drives into a PC and do it that way, but that's a lot of work. If I can image to an external USB drive, that would be much better. If anyone knows how to do this, I would be grateful to know how.


A:How do I image a system disk to a USB HD?

Imaging to a USB drive is actually extremely straightforward, and the preferred path.

I would recommend you use the FREE version of Macrium Reflect. Its very highly regarded here, and very easy to use.

Use this tutorial as a guide:
Imaging with free Macrium

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I think I would like to buy a large external HD on which to keep system images from my laptop and desktop. Is it possible to do this -- two images on one disk, not go a buy one?

Perhaps two folders on the new disk will do the job, one for the laptop and one for the desktop.

Thank you.

A:More Than One System Image on a Disk

I can't see why this wouldn't be possible. An image is the same as an ISO and I have many of those on one drive.

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OS: Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit

The windows system image backed up on my external hard drive (2TB WD USB3) is not showing while restoring the PC from an image.

The only option available is my hard drive partition on which i also had saved a system image.

What is the reason?
Though windows recommends External hard drive for backing up image when backing up the system.

A:System image on External hard drive is not accesible while restoring PC from image

Your system may not be able to see usb devices at boot. Check in bios for a setting that enables USB at boot. If there isn't such a setting, and if your system is fairly old and can't see the device, you'll have to copy the image to a separate partition on the hd.

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I need clarification.
I am having trouble differentiating system image and system repair disc.

More importantly, when to use one over the other ?
Example, if my computer has stopped working, then I will use ..... which one ?

1. ) I have my system image backed up to my external hard drive. ( Just did one today ).
In the event I am unable to boot my computer, how do I use the system image in order to recover my computer to working order ?
Connect my ext. hard drive to the computer, then what ?

2. ) I also have created a system repair disc.
How do I use the system repair disc when I am unable to boot my computer ?

Thank you.

A:system image and system repair disc

Hello Dhu,

The tutorials below can give you more details on the how and what for this. After reading through them, please let us know if you have any questions.

Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup

System Image Recovery

System Repair Disc - Create

Hope this helps,

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1) Do I have to create a new system repair disc EVERY time I create a new system image?

2). Why is a system repair disc needed?

3). Do I need a system repair disc if I have the original Windows 7 CD?

The reson I ask is I frequently back-up with this utility.

A:System Image and System Repair Disc

Hello Flotzie, and welcome to Seven Forums.

If you have a retail Windows 7 installation DVD, then no you do not have to create a system repair disc since both can be used to boot to the System Recovery Options screen to do a System Image Recovery with.

Hope this helps,

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Before I re-imaged my laptop, I made sure to do a backup of personal files + a system image in case things went wrong.

The imaging was successful, and now, the new Win7 OS recognizes the old backup as a backup from another computer (as it should).

However, is it possible to manage this old backup? (manage => edit)

Now that I don't need the old system image, I would prefer to get rid of it ... plus, I created a backup for my current image so there's quite a bit of space used by backup files..


A:Managing a backup from a previous image (eg. deleting system image)

Should be able to just delete it, but more detail is needed for the best answer.

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I have read about 50 threads in regard to the topic. I'm just looking for clarity here. I have a homebuilt system that got a virus Alureon.gen!k. Before researching it I let windows fix it. Computer won't open any applications now.
Decided to go to my Image to save time (NOT!). The image is on a USB external HDD currently attached directly to the computer. I can't get it to find the bleepin' Image!

The HDD was attached to an NAS over the network where it saved my windows images and backup files from the NAS. The drive's structure looks like this:

E: R6 Backup
Office Server
Office WindowsImageBackup MediaID.bin Data Drive Backup Files

Inside the Office folder are three items: Office, WindowsImageBackup, and a MediaID.bin. The Office folder has file backups. The WindowsImageBackup contains the expected image folders and files.

I understand from the threads that the WindowsImageBackup needs to be in the root of E: so I have done this two ways, neither of whiched worked. First I simply renamed the Root Office folder, and then I undid the rename and moved the WindowsImageBackup out of the Office folder and into the root of E:.

Windows sees the drive. Within the recovery you have the option under advanced to load drivers. I was doing this trying to use eSata to no avail so I switched to USB where you c... Read more

A:System Image Not Found on External USB HDD with Image as Root Folder

I installed Acronis after seeing someone's post about converting the Windows Image file to an Acronis and just booting from that, but it is telling me it won't work and possibly the windows file is corrupted. Has anyone seen this or been able to fix a so called corrupted .img file?

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I have created a disk image of the system disk, C:\ with the disk image software in Win 10 backup. The system disk was 70GB with 40GB of files. When I tried to write the image to the SSD the Win 10 install software said the disk (120GB= 110GB) was too small. I reinstalled the windows disk booted and shrank the system disk to just under 60 GB and retried the process with the same result. System is Win 10 32 bit on an old Acer netbook.

I would like to be able to transfer the installed files to the SSD.
I have looked at the tutorials for creating a system image and also how to create hardware independent image for installing win 10

A:Transfer System disk image to SSD

Originally Posted by Trevor Jones

I have created a disk image of the system disk, C:\ with the disk image software in Win 10 backup. The system disk was 70GB with 40GB of files. When I tried to write the image to the SSD the Win 10 install software said the disk (120GB= 110GB) was too small. I reinstalled the windows disk booted and shrank the system disk to just under 60 GB and retried the process with the same result. System is Win 10 32 bit on an old Acer netbook.

I would like to be able to transfer the installed files to the SSD.
I have looked at the tutorials for creating a system image and also how to create hardware independent image for installing win 10

Have you more than one partition on your hdd?

Where are you saving the image file?

Post image of disk partitions on hdd.

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I am trying to get a handle on how these 2 functions are related. I assume the Recovery disk would be needed if you can't boot to the computer (assume the OS needs to be present) and does the Recovery disk replace the boot files that may be damaged and then after you get booted up I assume the System Image (is that is referred to as a "backup")?? would be ran to get the computer back to the working order when the Image was taken. Assume that the Recovery disk would take place of the OS installation disk if it were not available and you couldn't just reinstall the OS and so you could load the Image.

A:Recovery Disk and System Image

Hello Jackman33,

Here's how it works on Windows 8:

Once you use the Win 7 Recovery Option to create a System Image, you have three ways to restore that image if required:

The first method is to create a Rescue Disk which is done as the last step of the System Image creation process or on demand.
The second method is to create a USB Recovery Drive on demand.
The third method is to use your original installation DVD and select the repair option.

All 3 of the above methods are invoked at boot by selecting the BIOS boot menu from the splash screen and then selecting the proper boot device (eg, DVD or USB). It is also important to note that you select the proper boot option that matches your installation configuration (UEFI or Legacy installation). So, if you want to use, let's say, the installation DVD, you might have two options that look something like this:

Boot from:
CD/DVD (Legacy)

However, I would recommend that you skip all the above and make a quick migration to a free 3rd-party System Imaging software because the steps are slightly changed in Windows 8.1 and, in some rare cases, the rebranded System Imaging function doesn't even work properly.

Latest Win 8.1 ISO "Breaks" System Image Functionality

I personally use Macrium Reflect free and highly recommend it:

Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - Information and download

Good luck with your decision on this issue.


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I am changing to a new hard disk and here's my question. Can I just use the Windows 7 system image which I created from the old C drive to "restore" or image it into the new hard disk? Thanks for all replies.

A:Using System Image on New Hard disk

As far as I know, yes you can do this...

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