Restoring to different hardware

Which application would you use to restore to different hardware?

  • Macrium Reflect Home

    Votes: 9 69.2%
  • Terabyte's Image for Windows w/OSD

    Votes: 1 7.7%
  • Something else

    Votes: 3 23.1%

  • Total voters
    13

n8chavez

Level 17
Thread author
Well-known
Feb 26, 2021
842
I'm going to be changing main systems soon. My current one is dying and I've ordered the new one. The new one has completely different hardware than my current one. I'll need to restore an image of my current system onto the new system, when I get it. I have licenses for both IFW and Reflect, but I've never had to do this before and I need advice. Which application is better at restoring to different hardware? Which one has the best chance of success?
 

Bot

AI-powered Bot
Apr 21, 2016
3,561
Both IFW (Image for Windows) and Reflect (Macrium Reflect) are capable of restoring an image to different hardware, but there are some differences between the two that you should consider.

IFW is known for its flexibility and compatibility with different hardware configurations. It uses a sector-based imaging approach, which means it creates an exact copy of the source drive, including the partition table and boot sector. This allows IFW to restore the image to different hardware without any issues in most cases. It also provides additional features like the ability to restore individual files from an image and support for various file systems.

Reflect, on the other hand, uses a file-based imaging approach. It creates an image of the source drive by backing up the files and folders rather than the entire drive. While Reflect also supports restoring to different hardware, it may require additional steps to ensure compatibility. Reflect has a feature called "ReDeploy" that helps in restoring to different hardware by injecting the necessary drivers during the restore process. This can improve the chances of a successful restore on different hardware configurations.

In terms of success rates, both applications have a good track record, but it ultimately depends on the specific hardware and software configuration of your systems. It's always recommended to have a backup of your important data before attempting any restore operation, regardless of the software you choose.

In summary, IFW is generally considered more flexible and compatible with different hardware configurations, while Reflect offers additional features like file-level restores and a driver injection mechanism for better compatibility. It's a good idea to test the restore process on your new hardware using both applications to determine which one works best for your specific setup.
 

roger_m

Level 41
Verified
Top Poster
Content Creator
Dec 4, 2014
3,029
Except for some vary rare cases, you don't specifically need to use backup software that has the option to restore to dissimilar hardware. Since Vista, Windows had been smart enough to recognise when it's running on different hardware and on the first boot, it will remove drivers for hardware that is not present on the new system, and try to install drivers for devices that were not on the old system. When I buy a new computer, I either put the SSD from my old computer in the new one, or clone it to the new SSD. For cloning drives, I've recently started using Hasleo Disk Clone. It's free and it includes the option to create bootable USB media. I was using bootable media created with AOMEI Backupper Pro. But I discovered it was not cloning the recovery partition, whereas Hasleo does.
 
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n8chavez

Level 17
Thread author
Well-known
Feb 26, 2021
842
Except for some vary rare cases, you don't specifically need to use backup software that has the option to restore to dissimilar hardware. Since Vista, Windows had been smart enough to recognise when it's running on different hardware and on the first boot, it will remove drivers for hardware that is not present on the new system, and try to install drivers for devices that were not on on the old system. When I buy a new computer, I either put the SSD from my old computer in the new one, or clone it to the new SSD. For cloning drives, I've recently started using Hasleo Disk Clone. It's free and it includes the option to create bootable USB media. I was using bootable media created with AOMEI Backupper Pro. But I discovered it was not cloning the recovery partition, whereas Hasleo does.

Very good points, @roger_m! Come to think of it, both IFW and reflect have cloning features. I've never had the need to use them. I've only used them for backing up and restoring, never cloning. Hasleo's restore suite has a cloning feature too. There's nothing that says I can't use all three, if need be; 1+2 backup programs. I have an external 3.5 inch/2.5 inch drive reader that plugs in via usb. I wonder if the cloning feature on these programs will work that way; if they will be able to recognize the drive to be cloned. Do you think it would, or do you think the drive needs to be internal for it to work?

Anyway, thanks for the suggestion!
 

roger_m

Level 41
Verified
Top Poster
Content Creator
Dec 4, 2014
3,029
I wonder if the cloning feature on these programs will work that way; if they will be able to recognize the drive to be cloned. Do you think it would, or do you think the drive needs to be internal for it to work?
Drives don't need to be internal, you just have to select the source and destination drives. It doesn't matter if they are internal or external drives.
 

n8chavez

Level 17
Thread author
Well-known
Feb 26, 2021
842
I voted for Macrium Reflect. However, I have also AOMEI Backupper and Hasleo Backup Suite Free covering its back. :)

Ha! I was just reading your comment on KB5034203 at Wilders @B-boy/StyLe/! Funny. But yeah, I have the same opinion. At least in this case, it's better to have more than one program. When I get back to regular backup/restoring it'll go down to just the one. But since new hardware in involved it's better to err on the side of caution. Although, I would never trues AOMEI Backupper.
 
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B-boy/StyLe/

Level 3
Verified
Well-known
Mar 10, 2023
147
Ha! I was just reading your comment on KB5034203 at Wilders @B-boy/StyLe/! Funny. But yeah, I have the same opinion. At least in this case, it's better to have more than one program. When I get back to regular backup/restoring it'll go down to just the one. But since new hardware in involved it's better to err on the side of caution. Although, I would never trues AOMEI Backupper.

Hi,
Yeah, that was me there. I've raged a little bit because the KB5034763 gave me a headache, and I've never had a problem after an update for the last few years. I've described the issue here as well, and on Reddit too:
Probably only some of us are affected, but my system is well maintained, but I have no clues what cause the issue. But will run some tests to try finding the culprit.
It's ok. That's why I am using Macrium Reflect for, after all.

But @roger_m is right. You no longer need a program to migrate an OS to a new hardware (unless your SSD is dying, and you are buying a new one) to replace it. You can simply transfer your current SSD to a new computer, and it will boot just fine. New OSes updates the hal.dll and the other components by themselves. I have not reinstalled Windows from 2015. I Installed Win 8.1 in 2015 back there on my first SSD (850 Pro) and when it was starting to die in 2021 (still using it as an external flash now for temporary files because its health is 50% degraded, and its size (120GB) is too low for the current standards to be used as a main system disk) I used Macrium to clone the entire drive to my current 970 Evo Plus drive. Next I updated to Win 10 and probably will do the same when I am going to update to Win 11 as well (even if I change the whole PC). But since I am currently using the system for work as well, I do not want to test the behavior if I disable CSM (legacy Bios), enable TPM and Secure Boot, migrate MBR to GPT and enable C.A.M. (Clever Access Memory - aka Resizable Bar). I see a lot of potential stability risks issues and I want to avoid that for now. Maybe when I have more free time I will do all that and will finally update to Win 11. Yeah, I can use Rufus to bypass the requirements, but I want to do it right.

As for why, I am using 3 backup programs. It's not because I don't trust Macrium. In fact, Macrium never let me down so far. But the free version has been abandoned and the Home one is pricey for a Home user. And I am not a fan of the annual plans at all. But the one-time purchase was never discounted, so I may need to replace Macrium with some of the other 2 mentioned above if Macrium starts to give me problems, or it's incompatible with the new OS builds that are coming.

Only don't forget to delete the ghosts drivers in the Device Manager if you transfer the SSD to a new hardware, just in case. Device Manager => View => Show hidden devices.

Best regards!
 
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