Windows 10: How to create a single USB recovery drive for TWO machines

  1.    07 Aug 2015 #1

    How to create a single USB recovery drive for TWO machines


    I've got two machines, a desktop and a Laptop, both running Windows 10. I am wondering if I can create a single bootable USB recovery drive adequate for restoring both systems. Or do I need to make TWO USB drives for that purpose.

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  2. Borg 386's Avatar
    Posts : 21,628
    Win 7 32, Win 7 64 Pro, Win 8.1 64 Pro, Win 10 64 Education Edition
       07 Aug 2015 #2

    If you are talking about making a system image, this is a exact copy of your drive/partition. Since there may be different programs/settings on each machine, it might be best to make 2 separate ones, since each one will be unique to each machine.

    System Image - Create in Windows 10 - Windows 10 Forums

    A system image is an exact copy of a drive or partition which can be used to restore your PC to the state it was in at the time the image was made. By default, a system image only includes the drives that Windows requires to run, including Windows 10 itself, your system settings, programs, and files. You may also include any other drive in the image if you wish. When you restore your computer from a system image it is a complete restoration, you cannot choose individual items to restore and all of your current programs, system settings, and files are replaced with the contents of the system image.

    This tutorial will show you how to create a system image backup in Windows 10 to be able to use to restore the contents of your computer back to the state it was in when the system image was created if your hard drive fails or your computer ever encounters problems.

    You must be signed in as an administrator to be able to create a system image.
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  3. Posts : 1,497
    Windows 10 Pro (32-bit) 16299.15
       07 Aug 2015 #3

    I assume this is the type of Recovery Drive being mentioned.

    I don't know the answer I'm afraid though.

    My guess is that process now includes more information that's specific to the machine used to create it.

    Certainly I made one from my tablet, and the Recovery Drive must have included touchscreen drivers, because when I booted from the Recovery Drive it moved the mouse pointer when I touched it. Unless it has drivers for every touchscreen (or mine is a common type) I think it may have included the machine's specific drivers.
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  4. Posts : 1,497
    Windows 10 Pro (32-bit) 16299.15
       09 Aug 2015 #4

    Hi Edwin,
    I've done a bit more testing by making two Recovery Drives
    1. One from a tablet (running Windows 10 Home 32-bit)
    2. One from a laptop (running Windows 10 Pro 32-bit)

    I note that the recovery drive created from the tablet was usable with the touchscreen when I booted from the tablet. When I tried the version from the laptop, and used it to boot the tablet, the touchscreen didn't work, so I assume no touchscreen drivers were present.

    It was usable with a keyboard but I didn't go any further to try Recovery to see if it would have worked, as I didn't want to risk breaking the machine setup.

    So it seems the recovery drive includes some specific files and info from the machine used to create it, so two recovery drives created on two machines different won't be the same. Whether they are usable for recovery on a different machine I don't know, but I suspect I may end up keeping separate recovery drives for separate machines.
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