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  # 939623 23-Nov-2013 20:55
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Clonezilla, or old faithful Ghost which can push/backup over the network. Still supported until June 2014. Nothing stopping you using it after that... of course windows 7 and 8 let you make images of your drives anyway. Which works great without installing/downloading/purchasing anything else.

There's also other network/domain based solutions. Some higher end MS solutions are great but the price shoots up :-)




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  # 939643 23-Nov-2013 21:06
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I have used Acronis which works well but also EaseUS Backup

http://www.todo-backup.com/products/home/free-backup-software.htm

This is pretty good. So far I have replaced 4 SSD's in various machines using this product, cloning the disk drive to SSD  (there is even an optimise for SSD option) and resizing partitions.

I think I even once cloned a SCSI drive in a server to an external SATA and replaced the SCSI with the SATA as the boot drive.

I never look anywhere else when I do that work noe.




Staying in Wellington. Check out my AirBnB in the Wellington CBD.  https://www.airbnb.co.nz/rooms/32019730  Mention GZ to get a 10% discount

 

System One: Popcorn Hour A200,  PS3 SuperSlim, NPVR and Plex Server running on Gigabyte Brix (Windows 10 Pro), Sony BDP-S390 BD player, Pioneer AVR, Raspberry Pi running Kodi and Plex, Panasonic 60" 3D plasma, Google Chromecast

System Two: Popcorn Hour A200 ,  Oppo BDP-80 BluRay Player with hardware mode to be region free, Vivitek HD1080P 1080P DLP projector with 100" screen, Denon AVRS730H 7.2 Channel Dolby Atmos/DTS-X AV Receiver, Samsung 4K player, Google Chromecast, Odroid C2 running Kodi and Plex

 

 


 
 
 
 


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  # 939650 23-Nov-2013 21:24
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timmmay: I did a test run with Macrium, restoring an SSD image to a spinning disk. It did the job perfectly, made it bootable and worked properly. The recovery environment is Win PE, version 4 doesn't work at all, version 3.1 works fine. So I'm going to run with that, perhaps paying to get incremental backups.


I've been using WinPE 4 64-bit with no problems. I even had to use it last night when adding a new drive and making a mistake repartitioning the resident drive.

I get by without incremental backups. Instead I supplement full image backups with file level copying using automatic backups with Skydrive and Windows File History and occasional file/folder synchronisation software like FreeFileSync or Rsync.

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  # 939653 23-Nov-2013 21:27
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lchiu7: I have used Acronis which works well but also EaseUS Backup

http://www.todo-backup.com/products/home/free-backup-software.htm


EaseUS is easy to use. Until a year ago they had a free edition. They stopped it after all the bugs were ironed out and they finally got top reviews.

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  # 939654 23-Nov-2013 21:30
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The version, the link I posted to, is still free.




Staying in Wellington. Check out my AirBnB in the Wellington CBD.  https://www.airbnb.co.nz/rooms/32019730  Mention GZ to get a 10% discount

 

System One: Popcorn Hour A200,  PS3 SuperSlim, NPVR and Plex Server running on Gigabyte Brix (Windows 10 Pro), Sony BDP-S390 BD player, Pioneer AVR, Raspberry Pi running Kodi and Plex, Panasonic 60" 3D plasma, Google Chromecast

System Two: Popcorn Hour A200 ,  Oppo BDP-80 BluRay Player with hardware mode to be region free, Vivitek HD1080P 1080P DLP projector with 100" screen, Denon AVRS730H 7.2 Channel Dolby Atmos/DTS-X AV Receiver, Samsung 4K player, Google Chromecast, Odroid C2 running Kodi and Plex

 

 




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  # 939656 23-Nov-2013 21:36
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Hammerer: I've been using WinPE 4 64-bit with no problems. I even had to use it last night when adding a new drive and making a mistake repartitioning the resident drive.

I get by without incremental backups. Instead I supplement full image backups with file level copying using automatic backups with Skydrive and Windows File History and occasional file/folder synchronisation software like FreeFileSync or Rsync.


The rescue disk didn't work for me, I just got a blank screen. Since 3.1 worked I didn't bother to look further.

I don't really need incremental backups. I've only had to recover from a bad OS drive once, my image was six months old and I recovered within 2 days including sourcing a drive. I may make my images monthly, that'd be plenty. Little things like configuring XBMC and MySQL are the annoying part.

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  # 939715 24-Nov-2013 01:57
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Beware Acronis. We have had *3* instances of being unable to restore with support being unable to explain why. I know of two other IT Pros who have similar stories. It isn't in my opinion, the gold standard any longer. Paragon Software make good inexpensive recovery, support is good, and I've never in over 500+ restores had an issue.

Shadowprotect is excellent, but really too expensive in my opinion (Though we do sell lots of it) as a desktop product, but it's hard to beat for incremental backups.


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  # 939813 24-Nov-2013 11:30
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Boot up a live CD of FreeBSD or Linux and just use the dd command to make a sector by sector copy of the original disk?

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  # 939822 24-Nov-2013 12:23
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I am sure all tools have their pluses and minuses as evidenced by the comments in this thread.

But no matter what tool you choose, common sense says to check the backup every now and then.

There are two scenarios being discussed here.

1. Clone a drive to another one (like a SSD) so you can quickly do a drive replacement. Plenty of options out there and it soon becomes evident which one is working for you. As I said before I like ToDo Backup but Acronis has worked for me also.

2. Do drive image backups for recovery. Those backups need to be checked regularly otherwise as the OP noted, you are going to get caught when you really need the backup. And if the data is really important, take two backups.




Staying in Wellington. Check out my AirBnB in the Wellington CBD.  https://www.airbnb.co.nz/rooms/32019730  Mention GZ to get a 10% discount

 

System One: Popcorn Hour A200,  PS3 SuperSlim, NPVR and Plex Server running on Gigabyte Brix (Windows 10 Pro), Sony BDP-S390 BD player, Pioneer AVR, Raspberry Pi running Kodi and Plex, Panasonic 60" 3D plasma, Google Chromecast

System Two: Popcorn Hour A200 ,  Oppo BDP-80 BluRay Player with hardware mode to be region free, Vivitek HD1080P 1080P DLP projector with 100" screen, Denon AVRS730H 7.2 Channel Dolby Atmos/DTS-X AV Receiver, Samsung 4K player, Google Chromecast, Odroid C2 running Kodi and Plex

 

 




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  # 939846 24-Nov-2013 13:18
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jpoc: Boot up a live CD of FreeBSD or Linux and just use the dd command to make a sector by sector copy of the original disk?


That would make for some large backups, and potentially difficult recovery. The tools made for it do things like make the disk bootable, get the windows BCD set up (no idea what that even is), and do other things. Making a disk bootable and a windows install working was the hard part after using DriveImageXML.

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  # 939965 24-Nov-2013 19:33
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timmmay: VHD?


virtual hard disk.  you boot your machine into a C:\ drive that is actually a ".vhd" file that sits on the disk.  great for running dual-boot win7/win8 on a small disk like a 128gb SSD as you can use 'dynamically expanding' vhd files.  check this article out: http://www.zdnet.com/blog/bott/how-to-use-a-vhd-to-dual-boot-windows-8-on-a-windows-7-pc/4847





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  # 939986 24-Nov-2013 20:34
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Ah cool, thanks. I only tend to need one OS at a time on a machine at the moment.

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  # 940009 24-Nov-2013 21:53
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timmmay:
jpoc: Boot up a live CD of FreeBSD or Linux and just use the dd command to make a sector by sector copy of the original disk?


That would make for some large backups, and potentially difficult recovery. The tools made for it do things like make the disk bootable, get the windows BCD set up (no idea what that even is), and do other things. Making a disk bootable and a windows install working was the hard part after using DriveImageXML.


You are right about the size issue but the rest is not an issue. You dd from your boot disk to another drive and you have a replacement boot disk just sitting ready to use with nothing to do but plug it in.



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  # 940074 25-Nov-2013 06:32
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I wonder if DD would handle say moving between a 60GB SSD and a 2TB HDD?

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  # 940136 25-Nov-2013 09:58
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timmmay: I wonder if DD would handle say moving between a 60GB SSD and a 2TB HDD?


Natively, on FreeBSD it certainly does. You get an exact copy of the first 60G and then empty space. Then, when you boot, the OS nags about the partition table not matching the drive so you confirm that you would like to have that fixed and you then get a new partition table marking the rest of the disk as available freespace for new partitions.

I have seen that quite often when moving systems between usb sticks and ssds.

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