Windows 10: Create System Image in Windows 10  

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  1. Posts : 26,723
    Windows10Pro 64Bit - Build 14393.1198
       01 May 2016 #130

    @Mooly
    Simple solution is what I've been telling folks for a long time. Don't Use Windows Backup!! It can not be trusted in the long run.

    Almost any other image backup is better. I used to only use Acronis image for many years, I have registered versions all the way to 2016 now. But they have added over the years too much bloat to their updates . Older versions IF you must use Acronis are better.

    Macrium Reflect is much better than both of them. Takes up very little hard drive space, runs very well, always works. Their always updating and improving their software. Does not take very long for complete backup images. Plus its FREE !! Unless you want to buy their registered version. Which is slightly overpriced in my opinion.
      My ComputersSystem Spec


  2. Posts : 801
    W10 pro x86 and Vista x86
       01 May 2016 #131

    Mike... I've got to like the Windows offering. The super clean and easy interface is a revelation after other offerings. I've encountered no real problems in normal use, I've just pushed the boundaries to see what it will and will not do and to get to know its quirks.

    Acronis... I've used for years, TI2007, TI2012 on W7, and TI2014 in W8. Each was more buggy than the last. TI2007 was the best of the bunch but its not compatible with later OS's (when run from within the OS). A clean install of W10 and what was the first thing I did ? I bought TI2016 and regretted every second with it. It was so bug ridden as to be untrue. I claimed a full refund within the 30 day window.

    Tried Macrium and that was fine operationally but if I'm honest I thought the interface convoluted and not particularly intuitive. By that I mean you had to think and make sure the operation was set up to do what you wanted. So I tried Windows backup and found it super quick and easy to use, and used normally (i.e. not trying to make it do something its not designed for), super reliable too.

    Windows Backup gets my vote at the moment. Nothing to install, nothing to worry about compatibility wise, or worry over whether a Windows update will 'break' something (as seems to happen with Acronis... I can't speak for Macrium). No system overheads, nothing running when it shouldn't be or using resources.

    What's not to like ?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    01 May 2016 #132

    I would definitely be an improvement if Macrium Reflect had one-button image and restore functions in addition to the interface it has now. Maybe suggest that to Macrium?
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  4. Posts : 26,723
    Windows10Pro 64Bit - Build 14393.1198
       01 May 2016 #133

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    I would definitely be an improvement if Macrium Reflect had one-button image and restore functions in addition to the interface it has now. Maybe suggest that to Macrium?
    I find nothing wrong with the interface now. Not that much "thinking" to make a image backup, couple clicks and its running .
    But I suppose they could make it easier for folks with problems thinking....lol Don't think they EVER Will thou.

    Bottom line everyone has a choice as to which program they want to use for making their image backups. Which is fine with me.
    If everyone DID make image backups regularly, we would have less people asking how to fix this...or that problem with their Windows 10.

    As far as using Windows Backup .....I've read so many problems with people that made their image backup with Windows, and then when they tried to restore one of them....it failed. I would not ....and never will trust Windows image backup.
      My ComputersSystem Spec


  5. Posts : 801
    W10 pro x86 and Vista x86
       01 May 2016 #134

    OldMike65 said: View Post
    If everyone DID make image backups regularly, we would have less people asking how to fix this...or that problem with their Windows 10.
    Agree 100% on that one.

    OldMike65 said: View Post
    As far as using Windows Backup .....I've read so many problems with people that made their image backup with Windows, and then when they tried to restore one of them....it failed. I would not ....and never will trust Windows image backup.
    I've read similar, not just about Windows but other imaging programs as well. A lot of the time people seem to have such convoluted setups that I wonder whether it really is a problem with the program they use, and rather that its more a case of the way the way use it, or think they are using it.

    Ultimately you have to use what you are comfortable with and trust. For me that is Windows, and it has worked correctly each and every time on my two set ups (one a 32bit, one a 64). I'm happy managing, moving and renaming backups and know (based on experience) that any will restore correctly. That's not to say its beyond improvement. The ability to name backups at creation would be great, and an official 'manual' detailing how it all actually works would be good to, because nobody really seems to know the nitty gritty detail.

    For example, are the images incremental or differential in nature. They are 'something' along those lines because the folder size increases only a little each time a new image is made. Are they a hybrid of the two schemes ? The small increase in folder size with each new backup seems a little to small for them to be differentials, and on the other hand, consistently to small for them to be incrementals. Also if they are one or the other, why does each run of making a backup always take the same time, even when only a small overall change is made to the overall size of the backup folder ? That they are a set of either incrementals, differentials or a hybrid of the two seems to be confirmed by the fact that you can use the advanced restore option and pick from any of the backups made. And they work

    But where's the 'flippin manual lol.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  6. Posts : 801
    W10 pro x86 and Vista x86
       01 May 2016 #135

    This shows what happens when you delete all the Windows backup files from the partition they were stored on. There were 3 backup images here, two of which were chains of backups within their respective folders. The only way to recover the space is to format the partition. Its not a problem, just something unexplained in the way it all works. As you can see, we are not talking small amounts of space here.

    Name:  Shadow Copies.JPG
Views: 352
Size:  14.6 KB
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  7. Posts : 31
    Windows 10 Professional, 64-bit
       08 May 2016 #136

    Strange that you started liking Acronis less and less with each upgrade.

    I am using Acronis for a decade and a half and am presently on Acronis True Image 2014 Premium (English). And there has never been a problem even once. I have tried Macrium and Windows 8/10 backups now and again because they were free but they have let me down a number of times and I had to resort reinstalling Windows.


    Mooly said: View Post
    Mike... I've got to like the Windows offering. The super clean and easy interface is a revelation after other offerings. I've encountered no real problems in normal use, I've just pushed the boundaries to see what it will and will not do and to get to know its quirks.

    Acronis... I've used for years, TI2007, TI2012 on W7, and TI2014 in W8. Each was more buggy than the last. TI2007 was the best of the bunch but its not compatible with later OS's (when run from within the OS). A clean install of W10 and what was the first thing I did ? I bought TI2016 and regretted every second with it. It was so bug ridden as to be untrue. I claimed a full refund within the 30 day window.

    Tried Macrium and that was fine operationally but if I'm honest I thought the interface convoluted and not particularly intuitive. By that I mean you had to think and make sure the operation was set up to do what you wanted. So I tried Windows backup and found it super quick and easy to use, and used normally (i.e. not trying to make it do something its not designed for), super reliable too.

    Windows Backup gets my vote at the moment. Nothing to install, nothing to worry about compatibility wise, or worry over whether a Windows update will 'break' something (as seems to happen with Acronis... I can't speak for Macrium). No system overheads, nothing running when it shouldn't be or using resources.

    What's not to like ?
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  8. Posts : 26,723
    Windows10Pro 64Bit - Build 14393.1198
       08 May 2016 #137

    junglee said: View Post
    Strange that you started liking Acronis less and less with each upgrade.

    I am using Acronis for a decade and a half and am presently on Acronis True Image 2014 Premium (English). And there has never been a problem even once. I have tried Macrium and Windows 8/10 backups now and again because they were free but they have let me down a number of times and I had to resort reinstalling Windows.
    I used Acronis for almost the same amount of time that you have. Each new release had more and more bloat ware installed with it. Your only 2 years behind, as newest release is 2016 version. Which takes up a huge amount of hard drive space, and loads 4 addons into memory. Your 2014 version is a lot smaller, and does not load as much crap as the 2016 version. Still I found out that Macrium Reflect takes up very little space, and has NEVER failed to restore for me. I have registered copies of Acronis going back to 2006 and up to 2016 version. Macrium Reflect does a much better job. Period.
      My ComputersSystem Spec


  9. Posts : 801
    W10 pro x86 and Vista x86
       08 May 2016 #138

    Acronis TI2016 and W10 was a total disaster, not just for me but for others as well. Many of the issues I experienced were reported on the Acronis forums and the response from the company was pathetic.

    The main issues I had were that Acronis would not allow Windows to shut down correctly. A 'your PC will shut down in 2 minutes' message was the big problem... and many were reporting the same.

    Backups that I made would not be recognised by the program. There was no way to get them to load into the program and for them to be available for a restore. And believe me... I tried. To restore you had to use the bootable media.

    My install of TI was as good as it gets... just a clean W10 install (with nothing added, TI was the first thing I normally install).

    Windows backup works for me
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  10. Posts : 15
    Windows.8.1, windows10.9860
       17 May 2016 #139

    I've read all 14 pages and it is strange to me that nobody haven't mentioned that underneath
    GUI interface for creating backup lies wellknown utility WBADMIN.EXE. For sure the most part of the
    Windows users these days prefer GUI interface but simple administrator command wbadmin.exe /?
    gives answers on the most part of the questions I've seen in this discussion. E.G: at page 4 ACMANTEN have asked
    "Is it possbile to get an index listing of folders/files from an IMAGE datafile without loading on another HDD?".
    No problem, just run as administrator command like:

    WBADMIN GET ITEMS -version:03/31/2005-09:00

    Change the string above with a real date of your backup. You can use WBADMIN GET VERSIONS to get the dates and versions of all of the backups created.

    To get help just run WBADMIN GET ITEM /?.

    WBADMIN in Windows 10 is a SIMPLIFIED version of the same utility which exists for years in Windows servers.

    It was already said and illustrated here that WBADMIN ( and thus GUI interface ) creates on the target volume
    a set of VHDX-files and some XML-files. As was mentioned above any of these VHDX can be mounted as with DISKPART
    utility as with Disk Management GUI program. Assignment of the letter to the mounted volume provides an opportunity
    to copy any file to another volume - this is an answer to the question of ACMANTEN on page 4.

    Other opportunity as soon as VHDX is mounted is a possibility to COPY volume content to the any other volume
    with appropriate size. This can be done for example with AOMEI Partition Assistant or any other utility which permits
    to copy partitons. Thus we can restore system image backup to the other disk drive and even on the other computer.
    I've done it many times with AOMEI Partition Assistant.

    Having nothing against very good Acronis ATI ( I've used for the last years ATI-2013, -2014, -2015,-2016 )
    I'm afraid that ATI will never permit to backup RUNNING system as WBADMIN ( or GUI backup interface ) does it.
    Thus my practice: boot from USB drive and run ATI backup of a full internal drive once a month and WBADMIN backup of SOME system volumes once per week.
    Last edited by sysprg; 17 May 2016 at 08:13.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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