Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Can't create recovery drive on DVD using Windows 8.1

  1. #11


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonB View Post
    Thanks Shawn for your reply. The reason I wanted to write the recovery to a DVD is that ... at the moment ... I don't have a spare flash drive but have hundreds of blank DVDs. I did some googling on the subject and several links offer advice as to how to use a DVD rather than a flash drive..... Unfortunately, none of those "work arounds" worked for me. For example this links suggests ways to write to a DVD....

    Create a Recovery Drive in Windows 8 - TechRepublic


    Next shopping trip I will purchase some more flash drives. Again thanks much for your reply......
    Technically the DVD version is called a "system repair disc". Only the USB is referred to as a "recovery drive". Just semantics though.

    System Repair Disc - Create in Windows 8

    You could create a recovery drive, then create an ISO from it to use to create a DVD, but it would all be pointless if you didn't have a USB to use anyways.
    Thanks Shawn (again) ....... I think I will be making a trip to store this afternoon to pick up a few flash drives.......

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #12


    Posts : 22,578
    64-bit Windows 10


    You're most welcome. Glad we could help.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #13


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1


    Just a followup comment ......

    I copied all the files on one of my existing 4GB flash drives to another external device. Then deleted everything on that flash drive. I then used it to create a recovery drive. Everything went smoothly.

    What concerns me is whole set of "recovery drive files" (not sure exactly what to call them) amount to only 289 MB. Seems like a big waste of space to me when these files would easily fit on a DVD with lots of room to spare.

    Why wouldn't Microsoft give the user an option ...... flash drive or DVD? Any thoughts?

    Thanks ..........
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #14


    Posts : 22,578
    64-bit Windows 10


    Jason,

    If only WinRE (System Recovery Options) are included, then it would only be that small. If you opted to included a copy of the recovery partition from an OEM PC, then the size would be much larger.

    Either way, you are still able to use the USB like you normally would, but just don't delete the recovery files on it.
    Last edited by Brink; 21 Nov 2013 at 20:56. Reason: typo
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #15


    Posts : 5,360
    7/8/ubuntu/Linux Deepin


    There are 2 different things going on here.

    If you look on your HD you will find a hidden folder called recovery. Inside there will be another folder cotaining a fella called winre.wim.

    That is the thing that boots up if you select F8 "Repair My Computer". It includes the Repair options. Startup repair and system restore it should be able to do. Refresh and reset it can only do if it can find an image of your operating system. That might be the image on the recovery partition, or a custom image you made yourself, or an image on some external media you can plug in

    There used to be an option to "Create a repair disc". That disc would contain winre.wim renamed to boot.wim. It did not contain the actual installation files /operating system image.

    There is now an option called "Create recovery drive". That will also contain winre.wim renamed to boot .wim. In addition, it will try to find and include an operating system image - e.g. from your recovery partition. If it can't find the image, then you end up with just winre.wim and his repair tools - the same as the previous "create repair disc" ( except on usb instead of cd/dvd ).
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #16


    Posts : 5,360
    7/8/ubuntu/Linux Deepin


    I am just making something that will do the same as "create recovery disc". I might enhance it a bit to make it more useful.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #17


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Jason,

    If only WinRE (System Recovery Options) are included, then it would only be that small. If you opted to included a copy of the recovery partition from an OEM PC, then the size would be much larger.

    Either way, you are still able to use the USB like you normally would, but just don't delete the recovery files on it.
    Thanks Shawn (again). I elected not to include a copy of the "recovery partition" because quite honestly I have NO IDEA what a recovery partition is. Would you suggest that I use a larger capacity flash drive and do the whole process again ... this time including the "recovery partition?"
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #18


    Posts : 9
    Windows 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by SIW2 View Post
    There are 2 different things going on here.

    If you look on your HD you will find a hidden folder called recovery. Inside there will be another folder cotaining a fella called winre.wim.

    That is the thing that boots up if you select F8 "Repair My Computer". It includes the Repair options. Startup repair and system restore it should be able to do. Refresh and reset it can only do if it can find an image of your operating system. That might be the image on the recovery partition, or a custom image you made yourself, or an image on some external media you can plug in

    There used to be an option to "Create a repair disc". That disc would contain winre.wim renamed to boot.wim. It did not contain the actual installation files /operating system image.

    There is now an option called "Create recovery drive". That will also contain winre.wim renamed to boot .wim. In addition, it will try to find and include an operating system image - e.g. from your recovery partition. If it can't find the image, then you end up with just winre.wim and his repair tools - the same as the previous "create repair disc" ( except on usb instead of cd/dvd ).
    Thanks so much for your detailed reply, SIW2. I'm still trying to absorb what you wrote. I've been using Windows forever now ...... Win95, XP, Vista, and Windows 7. And I'm just coming up to speed on Windows 8 (make that Windows 8.1). From just a "user" standpoint I feel very competent. But I definitely don't have "guru" status like some of you guys...... and at my age probably never will. Thanks again for your help.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #19


    Posts : 22,578
    64-bit Windows 10


    Quote Originally Posted by JasonB View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Jason,

    If only WinRE (System Recovery Options) are included, then it would only be that small. If you opted to included a copy of the recovery partition from an OEM PC, then the size would be much larger.

    Either way, you are still able to use the USB like you normally would, but just don't delete the recovery files on it.
    Thanks Shawn (again). I elected not to include a copy of the "recovery partition" because quite honestly I have NO IDEA what a recovery partition is. Would you suggest that I use a larger capacity flash drive and do the whole process again ... this time including the "recovery partition?"
    The recovery partition is what an OEM puts on the PC that is used to restore Windows 8 back to a factory state with. This is basically your Windows 8 installation media.

    If you have a USB flash drive large enough, then it wouldn't be a bad idea to include a copy of the recovery partition on it. This way in case something should happen to the recovery partition on the hard drive, you have a backup.

    Recovery Drive - Create with USB Flash Drive in Windows 8
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #20


    Posts : 2
    Windows 8.1


    JasonB, You could save a system image onto DVDs. Go to your control panel, click on File History, and down in the bottom left corner of the page you will see System Image Backup. This will take a snapshot of your computer the way it is right at the time that you do it, and when you restore using these DVDs it will restore the computer to exactly the same way it was when you saved the system image. The only drawback is that this will take multiple DVDs. Your backup could be 60GB or more depending on what you have installed on your computer. For regular DVDs, this could mean thirteen or more DVDs. Another option would be to invest in an external hard drive. I have a USB 3.0 one and it saves a system image in about seven or eight minutes. Newegg.com and Dell themselves will probably have some decent prices on them as Christmas draws closer. You could probably pick one up from Newegg or Amazon for $75 or less. Do yourself a favor and get a USB 3.0 drive, as it will be much faster. USB 2.0 will work just fine, it's just quite a bit slower. Even if your present PC doesn't have any USB 3.0 ports, a PC you buy in the future will. A USB 3.0 drive will work fine in a USB 2.0 port, and vice versa. Hope this info helps.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Can't create recovery drive on DVD using Windows 8.1
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