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System Image Recovery - Restore Image on Computer in Windows 8

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  1. #1
    System Image Recovery - Restore Image on Computer in Windows 8

    System Image Recovery - Restore Image on Computer in Windows 8
    How to Do a System Image Recovery in Windows 8 and 8.1
    Published by Brink is online now
    04 Sep 2012
    Default System Image Recovery - Restore Image on Computer in Windows 8

    How to Do a System Image Recovery in Windows 8 and 8.1



    information   Information
    This tutorial will show you how to restore the contents of your Windows 8 or 8.1 PC back to how it was at the time a system image was created if your hard disk or entire computer ever stops working.

    warning   Warning

    • You can only do a system image recovery to a HDD or SSD that is the same size or larger than the one(s) included in the system image when it was created. You will not be able to do a system image recovery to a smaller HDD/SSD. If the HDDs/SSDs are larger, then you will have "unallocated" space afterwards that is left over from the difference that you can extend into.
    • When you restore your computer from a system image, it is a complete restoration. You can't choose individual items to restore, and all of your current programs, system settings, and files are replaced with those on the system image.
    • If your system image is on an external or removable device (ex: USB drive), then make sure it is connected before starting. If it's a USB device, then make sure that you also have your BIOS settings (ex: Legacy USB) set to allow USB devices to be recognized at boot.




    Here's How:


    1. Boot to the System Recovery Options screen, and click/tap on the System Image Recovery option. (see screenshot below)

    Click image for larger version

    2. If prompted, choose the OS (ex: Windows 8) that you want to do a System Image Recovery with. (see screenshot below)
    NOTE: You will usually only see this if you booted from a Windows 8 installation DVD or USB thumb drive, or ISO file if in a virtual machine.

    Click image for larger version

    3. If prompted, select and click/tap on an administrator account on the computer that you are doing a system image recovery on. (see screenshot below)

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    4. Type in the password for the selected administrator account, and click/tap on Continue. (see screenshot below)

    Click image for larger version

    5. Do step 6 or 7 below for which system image you wanted to use.

    Note   Note
    If you get a Windows cannot find a system image on this computer message, then see:

    How to Load SATA Drivers in Windows 8 System Image Recovery


    6. To Use the Latest Available System Image

    A) Select (dot) Use the latest available system image, click/tap on Next, and go to step 8 below. (see screenshot below)

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    7. To Select to Use Another System Image

    A) Select (dot) Select a system image, and click/tap on Next. (see screenshot above)
    NOTE: This is if the system image that you want to use is not listed here, and/or is saved at another location that you wish to choose from instead. If you saved your system image to a set of DVDs instead of a HDD/SSD, then insert the last DVD from the image set first.

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    B) Select the location of the system image for the computer that you want to restore, and click/tap on Next. (see screenshots below)

    Note   Note
    To add a image from a network location, click on the Advanced button, and on the Search for a system image on the network option.

    If the drive cannot be seen to select a system image from, then you may need to use the tutorial below to load your SATA or RAID drivers before it will be seen. You would click on the Advanced button, and on the Install a driver option.

    SATA Drivers - Load in Windows 8 System Image Recovery

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    Name:  select-2A.jpg
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    C) Select a system image with the date and time that you want to restore, click/tap on Next, and go to step 8 below. (see screenshot below)

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    8. Do step 9, 10, or 11 below depending on what options you have and would like to do. (see screenshots below)

    Note   Note
    Format and repartition disks box:
    NOTE: Special thanks to MJF for this addition.

    1) Grayed out and selected
    You are forced to have the whole disk formatted and repartitioned to match the partition structure of the disk the image was made from. This can occur when restoring an image to a new disk or the original disk with a modified partition structure. Data on other partitions on the disk you are restoring to will be lost.

    2) Grayed out and unselected
    You are not given the option to format and repartition the disk. This will occur if you are restoring Windows from a partition on the same disk.

    3) Not grayed out and unselected
    Here you have the option to select format the whole disk and repartition or not. In this case the disk the image was taken from has a matching partition structure to the disk you are restoring the image to. By not selecting the format and repartition option your image will be restored and other partitions untouched such as valuable data partitions.



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    9. To Do a Full System Image Recovery
    NOTE: Use this option if you want to delete any existing partitions and format all disks on this computer to match the layout of what was included in the system image when it was created.

    A) Check the Format and repartition disks box (if not grayed out) and uncheck the Only restore system drives box (if available), and click/tap on Next. (see screenshots below step 8)

    B) Go to step 11 or 12 below.

    10. To Only Restore System Drives from System Image
    NOTE: Use this option if you want to format and restore only the drives from your system image that are required to run Windows. If the system image included that you moved anything like your page file, user folders, or user profile to another drive location than the default C, then that drive location(s) will also be formated and restored to how it was in the system image. If you have separate data drives, they will not be restored.

    A) If an available option, check the Only restore system drives box, click/tap on Next, and go to step 12 below. (see bottom screenshot below 8)

    11. To Exclude Restoring Specific Drives when Doing a System Image Recovery
    NOTE: This option will allow you to exclude specific disks from the restore process to make sure that these disks will not be formated or repartitioned.

    A) Check the Format and repartition disks box (if not grayed out), and click/tap on the Exclude disks button (if not grayed out). (see screenshots below step 8)
    NOTE: If the Exclude disks button is grayed out, then the HDD that you are restoring to is empty, or you do not have any disks in the system image that are able to be excluded from being restored.

    B) Check the disks that you want to exclude from being restored from the system image, and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

    Click image for larger version

    C) Click/tap on Next, and go to step 12 below. (see screenshots below step 8)

    12. When finished selecting what you want to restore from the system image, click/tap on Finish. (see screenshot below)

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    13. Click/tap on Yes. (see screenshot below)

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    14. You will now see this screenshot below.
    NOTE: If you have the system image on DVDs (step 7A), then have them ready to insert them as prompted.

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    15. When it is finished, click/tap on the Restart now button. (see screenshot below)
    NOTE: You will have 60 seconds before the computer restarts automatically.

    Name:  Restore_Image-8.jpg
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    That's it,
    Shawn


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  2. #1



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    Hello Shawn,

    Another great tutorial (as always)! I just wanted to emphasize that your method (IMHO) is the best way to recover Windows 8 from a failed hard drive situation that forces you to install a new replacement drive. The only limitation (that I can see) is that the new hard drive must be equal to or greater (in size) than the original and, if greater, the unallocated leftover space can be dealt with after the initial recovery installation. Anyway, I just had to try it so I created a system image of my 40GB drive and restored it to a newly formatted 80GB drive using your procedures as described above. It worked perfectly. Thanks a bunch!

    norepli


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  3. #2
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    You're welcome norepli. I'm glad you like it and found it helpful.
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    Hi Shawn,

    My Acer PC came pre-installed with OEM Win 8 OS Home Edition in dynamic disk. If I convert it to basic disk, will it delete my OS? If so, can I use this tutorial to recover the image I made (from your tutorial also) and reinstall the OS in basic disk? or should I should use the manufacturer's recovery media? Thanks in advance.
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  5. #4
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    Hello Ganie,

    You might see if you may be able to use OPTION ONE or OPTION TWO in the tutorial below to convert the disk back to basic without losing anything. I would still recommend to back up anything you do not want to lose just to be safe.

    Convert a Dynamic Disk to a Basic Disk - Windows 7 Help Forums

    Hope this helps.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec




  6. #5



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    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Hello Ganie,

    You might see if you may be able to use OPTION ONE or OPTION TWO in the tutorial below to convert the disk back to basic without losing anything. I would still recommend to back up anything you do not want to lose just to be safe.

    Convert a Dynamic Disk to a Basic Disk - Windows 7 Help Forums

    Hope this helps.
    Hi Shawn,
    I took a shot with Easeus as PW doesn't have the option to convert dynamic disk using the very same version you specified in the tutorial and I declined to the update. Even Easeus have the latest version (I think it's version 12.x) which didn't have the dynamic conversion option. So I made a wild guess and downloaded an old version (9.x) which had the conversion option. I followed the tutorial and the disk was succesfully converted to "basic" then this:

    Click image for larger version

    I was able to boot up to recovery screen using the rescue cd and tried to perform recovery by image. But then I realized, my image file is from dynamic disk so it won't work anymore. So, I had no choice but to pull out the USB recovery media I created before and perform a complete PC reset. It took about 25mins to reset including re-partition tasks (the disk remained basic after the reset which is what I want). But to install my programs and to setup the PC the way I want it (uninstalled crapwares, etc) took about 3 hrs. Now I have a fresh setup to make a backup image of. But it was painful... urgghh... About my data, I normally save them on a separate harddrive so they are all intact.

    Just, a heads up. You may want to revisit the tutorial and check for 3rd party software versions. But I am okay. No worries. At least I got what I want.

    Cheers!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #6
    Brink's Avatar

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    Ganie,

    I'm sorry to hear that you it didn't work out well for you, and that you had to do a fresh install.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #7



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    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Ganie,

    I'm sorry to hear that you it didn't work out well for you, and that you had to do a fresh install.
    No worries. It was me. Nothing wrong with my PC except I wanted the flexibility of basic disk for my purpose. Thanks.
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  9. #8



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    Actually I just have one question Shawn.
    After completing the PC reset, I noticed that there is a new partition in the hard drive named "DATA". And when I check the properties, it is 73GB in size but nothing is written on it. Can I just delete that partition?
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  10. #9
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    Go ahead and post a screenshot showing the full layout of your Disk Management window to see what it says first.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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