Windows 10: How to simulate a disaster in order to test a Macrium backup?

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  1.    24 Nov 2016 #1

    How to simulate a disaster in order to test a Macrium backup?


    .
    I have Win 10 Pro on a brand-new Dell Vostro.

    I've reduced the C: partition, and used the resulting space to create an E: partition for my data.

    I've installed all my usual day-to-day programs.

    I've created a Macrium image of the entire disk, but without the E: partition.

    I now want to test the backup image.

    Question: What's the best way to simulate some disaster that would allow me to test the backup? Do I simply select the entire contents of C: in File Explorer, and press Delete? How about the registry?

    I might as well do this now, rather than wait for a real disaster to occur. (I still have the Dell recovery partition. But I hope to delete that if Macrium works as expected.)
    .
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    24 Nov 2016 #2

    Best way is to recover the image you created to a spare disk, pull out the existing disk, replace it with the spare and see if it works. Reverse this when finished.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    24 Nov 2016 #3

    I agree with Railtech.
    You don't want to simulate disaster recovery by creating a real one. By using an empty disk you are doing an accurate simulation of the worst case scenario without unnecessary risk. This confirms that you have followed proper backup procedures, the backup contains everything necessary, and that the backup media is good. And if anything should go wrong you have an easy recovery of the OS to it's current state. And you will have gained valuable experience.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  4. Posts : 680
    W10 Pro (desktop), W10 (laptop), W10 (laptop), W10Pro (tablet)
       24 Nov 2016 #4

    A very good way to test it and end up with a performance boost as well would be by using your image to restore to an ssd and then use the ssd to replace the hdd in your system (Assuming your new system didn't come with an ssd to begin with.).
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    24 Nov 2016 #5

    .
    Railtech said: View Post
    Best way is to recover the image you created to a spare disk, pull out the existing disk, replace it with the spare and see if it works. Reverse this when finished.

    Thanks for the response. I'm not a techie, so I have a few questions.


    Railtech said: View Post
    Best way is to recover the image you created to a spare disk

    Assuming I had a spare disk (which I don't), where would that spare disk be during the restore? In a spare laptop? (Which I don't have.)


    Railtech said: View Post
    pull out the existing disk

    To me, that statement proves that the spare disk wasn't in my new laptop during the restore. So, where was it? (I feel like Sherlock Holmes )


    And the final question is: When other people buy new laptops, do they buy spare disks at the same time?


    Thanks.
    .
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    24 Nov 2016 #6

    .
    strollin said: View Post
    A very good way to test it and end up with a performance boost as well would be by using your image to restore to an ssd and then use the ssd to replace the hdd in your system (Assuming your new system didn't come with an ssd to begin with.).

    I have similar questions as for Railtech.

    How will I have an SSD that "just happens" to work with my Dell Vostro?

    During the restore, what will the harness be? Another Dell Vostro?

    Thanks.
    .
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  7. Posts : 730
    W10 pro x64 and W10 x86
       24 Nov 2016 #7

    Fitting an SSD to the Dell could well be the biggest leap forward in speed you could imagine. I did that 12 months ago to my Dell Vostro and to give an example, Macrium images the C drive in around 4 minutes (that's with around 30Gb of the C drive in use) and restores are just as quick.

    Did you create the Windows PE restore environment using Macrium ? That allows you to restore from within Windows and covers 99% of disaster recovery. Its only the rare occasions when you need the bootable media.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    24 Nov 2016 #8

    .
    Thanks for the response.

    LMiller7 said: View Post
    you are doing an accurate simulation of the worst case scenario without unnecessary risk.

    What is the risk? Are you saying that if someone accidentally deleted their C: drive in Windows Explorer, they wouldn't be able to recover? Can you give me some links for that scenario please. (It happened in a company that I've been in - not to me . The Help Desk simply re-cloned the system partition, which is similar to what I'm planning to do with an image rather than a clone.)


    LMiller7 said: View Post
    This confirms that you have followed proper backup procedures, the backup contains everything necessary, and that the backup media is good.

    Which of these three asserts would not be present as a result of a system drive wipe followed by an image restore?

    LMiller7 said: View Post
    and that the backup media is good.

    BTW: I always image to two external drives independently. In other words, it's two separate Macrium backup operations. It's not a single Macrium operation followed by a copy from the first external drive to the second external drive.


    LMiller7 said: View Post
    And you will have gained valuable experience.

    I agree with that. But at what expense so close to Christmas? Fifty quid for a spare disk. plus the cost of a harness to recover to that disk. That's coming close to a week's pension

    Thanks again.
    .
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  9. Posts : 2,220
    10 Home x64 (1703) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       24 Nov 2016 #9

    OldGrantonian said: View Post
    I agree with that. But at what expense so close to Christmas? Fifty quid for a spare disk. plus the cost of a harness to recover to that disk.
    What harness? I have spare disks for both my laptops. It's a couple of screws to undo, pull out the original disk and plug in the spare. If you're talking about the metal frame around the disk, you could swap that from the original drive to the spare one. I don't bother for a laptop, the disk is a snug enough fit without it. For a desktop (the Vestro brand name has both) you'd need to do the swap, that's about four more screws.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  10.    24 Nov 2016 #10

    @OldGrantonian
    There are always risks. Sometimes people make mistakes when creating backups and they turn out to be of no value. Even experts make mistakes and you have made it quite clear you have limited experience. Backup media can fail. Multiple backups do reduce the risk but do not eliminate it.

    None of these risks are great but they do exist. Experienced computer users prepare for things going wrong, no matter how unlikely that may seem. And on this forum and others I have seen so very many things go wrong. The suggested procedure may not be practical for you. But you did ask for the best.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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