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mrslothbrok

I need help understanding a few things, so please bear with me. Myself and my mom both have Dell Inspiron laptop computers with Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit, they both come with Dell DataSafe Local Backup. We have recovery media created for both of our computers by the DataSafe application, I've reset my computer to factory before with it and it seems to do well. She had to have her hard drive replaced in 2011 because it was failing, so the repair man created media for her the same way. But after reading this article, and this one, it seems that this "recovery" media won't do any good if the recovery partition that is hidden away becomes corrupted or if you have a total loss of the hard drive, because the recovery disk it asks you to create relies on the partition image on the hard drive to work.

So, what should I be doing to ensure that we have a proper disk image if in the event that our hard drives stop completely? I've seen Macrium Reflect Free, I tried it out on our desktop but I honestly haven't a clue as to what I am doing or what I'm supposed to do. Both of our computers are out of warranty so I don't know if the installation media from Dell will be free. We have two older backup drives, one by Clickfree that we got in 2010 and a Western Digital My Passport that has her school papers on it, but I don't know its age.

The problem here is, I don't know how to image our systems and put it on either hard drive, I don't even know if the Clickfree one will let me because as far as I know it only allows it to search for files. Could I just image the necessary partitions for Windows to run and the recovery partition that is hidden and do it that way? :confused:
 
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Neno

Level 5
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I used Acronis for a long time but I switched to O&O DiskImage. But in Windows 8 and I think 7 you don't even need any third party software, system alone provide you with such a tool.
To access it you need to go to control panel/system and security/file history ... wait for few seconds and you should see at bottom left corner System Image Backup option. With it you can make a complete system backup as you could with mentioned tools.
 
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mrslothbrok

Of all of the options you all have given me, which one is the easiest to understand?
 

WinXPert

Level 24
Verified
Trusted
Malware Hunter
If you have another PC to spare, you can test each program there so you can gauge for yourself based on hands-on usage.
 
M

mrslothbrok

So how would I go about imaging her system and in the event that I ever need to restore it, it will be restored to factory instead of how it currently is?

Do I just image the necessary partitions for Windows to boot and then do the recovery partition?

In the articles is he talking about recovery media like what you could create in Dell DataSafe that won't be reliable if it becomes corrupted because the recovery disk relies on that part of the hard drive to even work?
 

WinXPert

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Malware Hunter
If you do an image today, your system would be restored to the current state the image was taken
 

shemp

Level 1
.

So, what should I be doing to ensure that we have a proper disk image if in the event that our hard drives stop completely? I've seen Macrium Reflect Free, I tried it out on our desktop but I honestly haven't a clue as to what I am doing or what I'm supposed to do. Both of our computers are out of warranty so I don't know if the installation media from Dell will be free. We have two older backup drives, one by Clickfree that we got in 2010 and a Western Digital My Passport that has her school papers on it, but I don't know its age.

The problem here is, I don't know how to image our systems and put it on either hard drive, I don't even know if the Clickfree one will let me because as far as I know it only allows it to search for files. Could I just image the necessary partitions for Windows to run and the recovery partition that is hidden and do it that way? :confused:
Hi, Macrium Reflect would be a good choice especially if you're looking for a free program.There are tutorials covering most imaging/recovery tasks.
Here is one link: http://kb.macrium.com/KnowledgebaseArticle50074.aspx
Macrium will also let you build your own WinPE recovery media. Hope this helps.
 
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mrslothbrok

Hi, Macrium Reflect would be a good choice especially if you're looking for a free program.There are tutorials covering most imaging/recovery tasks.
Here is one link: http://kb.macrium.com/KnowledgebaseArticle50074.aspx
Macrium will also let you build your own WinPE recovery media. Hope this helps.
Thank you, the link helped better than the one I was reading.

But no one is answering my questions. I want to know that when you create system recovery media as Dell calls it from their Dell DataSafe program, does it require the hidden partition and the program to even work, if your HDD just flat out stops working or has a problem will it work then? Are the two articles I posted talking about the system recovery media that Dell allows you to create that isn't the same as a system image, so if something happens to your hard drive the recovery disks won't work because it relies on the hidden partition to do its job?

How do I put the system image on an external hard drive?
 

WinXPert

Level 24
Verified
Trusted
Malware Hunter
Thank you, the link helped better than the one I was reading.

But no one is answering my questions. I want to know that when you create system recovery media as Dell calls it from their Dell DataSafe program, does it require the hidden partition and the program to even work, if your HDD just flat out stops working or has a problem will it work then? Are the two articles I posted talking about the system recovery media that Dell allows you to create that isn't the same as a system image, so if something happens to your hard drive the recovery disks won't work because it relies on the hidden partition to do its job?

How do I put the system image on an external hard drive?
I guess not everyone have a Dell PC, if they do I'm sure they would help you based on their hands on experiences.
 
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mrslothbrok

I guess not everyone have a Dell PC, if they do I'm sure they would help you based on their hands on experiences.
But most major computer manufacturers I've seen use the same tactics to help you make system recovery media, just under a different name and they may do it a little differently, but it all looks the same to me.
 
D

Deleted member 178

acronis is a bit bloated but the most friendly user one , it detects which partitions to backup automatically, you just have to follow the wizard
 
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shemp

Level 1
Thank you, the link helped better than the one I was reading.

But no one is answering my questions. I want to know that when you create system recovery media as Dell calls it from their Dell DataSafe program, does it require the hidden partition and the program to even work, if your HDD just flat out stops working or has a problem will it work then? Are the two articles I posted talking about the system recovery media that Dell allows you to create that isn't the same as a system image, so if something happens to your hard drive the recovery disks won't work because it relies on the hidden partition to do its job?

How do I put the system image on an external hard drive?
Hi, just from reading this limited bit of info on Dell Datasafe http://dslbdownload.datasafelocalbackup.com/dsldownload-en.html
it would appear you would need the premium version in order to save backups to an external hard drive.It seems the premium version is the only one that can restore to new hardware, not the basic version. Which version do you have?

For sure imaging programs such as Macrium,Acronis,IFW create exact copies of your partitions that can be restored to a new hard drive if needed.
 
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MalwareT

I'm using O&O DiskImage 8 Professional (paid). If you want free go for AOMEI Backupper Standard.