Windows 10: System image or recovery flash drive?

  1.    31 Oct 2017 #1

    System image or recovery flash drive?


    Of the above which is the better solution to backup or do I need both? Also, I have a desktop and a laptop both running Windows 10 fall creator version. I have created a recovery flash drive with system files included for the desktop. Will that one also work for the laptop? Or do I need to create a seperate flash dive for the laptop?

    Thanx
    oeivinr
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    31 Oct 2017 #2

    Hi, Use 3rd party disk imaging. We continually recommend this, as does MS now in place of Win 7 Backup and Restore.

    Separate images needed for each device.
    Image the set of Windows partitions, and then image your data disks/partitions.
    Keep personal data off C: as far as possible.

    Here's my write-up on the value of disk imaging.

    Everyone who contributes regularly here uses and recommends disk imaging.

    If you use it, you can recover from:
    - a failed disk drive (restore to a new one)
    - ransomware (which encrypts your disk)
    - user error
    - unrecoverable problems from failed updates to problem programs
    - unbootable PC (hardware faults aside)

    Images also act as a full backup- you can extract files too.

    You can even use images to help you move more easily and quickly to a new PC.
    Can be used with Laplink software to transfer your build automatically to another PC

    Imaging can even help you sleep at night knowing you have a second chance.

    Creating disk images lets you restore Windows and all your imaged disks and partitions to a previous working state from compressed copies you have created and kept updated on external storage media, quickly and probably without technical help.

    Many here recommend Macrium Reflect (free) as a good robust solution and more reliable than some others. It’s
    - more feature rich
    - more flexible
    - more reliable
    than Windows Backup and Restore system images.

    It's well supported with videos, help and a responsive forum.

    There are other such programs, free/commercial, some with simpler interfaces, but Macrium R is one of the most robust and reliable.

    How long does it take?
    SSD+ USB3 - maybe 15 mins for the first system image, less thereafter
    HDD + USB2 - maybe 40-50 mins
    That’s with little personal data, few programs installed.
    - of course, depends how much you have on C:
    (You can and should image all your partitions and disks)

    Once you've created your first image, keep it updated with e.g. differential imaging- which images just changes from the first image, more quickly, and creates a smaller image file.

    You need a backup medium - say- twice as large as the total amount of data you are imaging to keep a reasonable number of differential images. This will vary dependent on the number of images you keep, so is only a rough practical guide.

    Some comment that system restore isn't always reliable; if it works and solves the problem, great. But sometimes restores won't work or fail. And of course a restore point only covers a limited number of aspects of the system. That’s where disk imaging comes in.

    (There's a tutorial on Macrium in the Tutorials section, and a couple of videos in the user videos section on this forum)
    Backup and Restore with Macrium Reflect Backup Restore Tutorials
    Windows 10 instructional videos by Ten Forums members
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    31 Oct 2017 #3

    IMO....both....simply because the image backup might become corrupt and/or you may want to do a clean install at some later date.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    31 Oct 2017 #4

    Plankton said: View Post
    IMO....both....simply because the image backup might become corrupt and/or you may want to do a clean install at some later date.
    A recovery drive is specific to PC.

    If you want to clean install, just use media creation tool which is generic and works on any pc. Also recovery drives are out of date after 6 months anyway.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    31 Oct 2017 #5

    cereberus said: View Post
    A recovery drive is specific to PC.

    If you want to clean install, just use media creation tool which is generic and works on any pc. Also recovery drives are out of date after 6 months anyway.
    In the OP title it says recovery flash drive.....which I took it meant the install media using the MCT from MS.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    31 Oct 2017 #6

    Plankton said: View Post
    In the OP title it says recovery flash drive.....which I took it meant the install media using the MCT from MS.
    Then you also need to reed the actual post:

    oeivinr said: View Post
    Of the above which is the better solution to backup or do I need both? Also, I have a desktop and a laptop both running Windows 10 fall creator version. I have created a recovery flash drive with system files included for the desktop. Will that one also work for the laptop? Or do I need to create a seperate flash dive for the laptop?

    Thanx
    oeivinr
    That is not a Windows 10 installation drive made from the MCT.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    31 Oct 2017 #7

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    Then you also need to reed the actual post:
    T.


    That is not a Windows 10 installation drive made from the MCT.
    That's exactly why I suggested the OP to create the install media with the MCT.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,641
    10 Home x64 (1803) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       31 Oct 2017 #8

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    Originally Posted by oeivinr
    ... I have created a recovery flash drive with system files included for the desktop. Will that one also work for the laptop?....

    That is not a Windows 10 installation drive made from the MCT.
    Quite right, it is in fact a drive specifically tailored for the PC that it was made on. The 'system files included', in addition to all the files needed to clean install Windows, can also include any OEM custom install files, such as device drivers and OEM utilities. The Recovery Drive with system files included is effectively a 'factory reset' drive.
      My ComputersSystem Spec


 

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