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Windows 8.1 - System Image Backup Solution; Fine Details

  1. #1


    Posts : 53
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    Windows 8.1 - System Image Backup Solution; Fine Details


    Hello eightforum users, I am a new member.

    I own an OEM Machine which is from Acer.

    To ask what is probably well known amongst IT pro's; does a system image backup solution (and consequently a restore from that image if needs be) work on OEM PC's, like a desktop from Acer, actually work without problems, and would I get a proper bootable and working machine after restoration.

    Brief scenario - I have used Acronis TI 2014 (Or even the Windows 8.1 system image utility) to create an image of my C: Drive/EFI Partition/Recovery Partition - and backed it up to an external USB HDD.

    My OS crashes for whatever reason and I can't boot.

    I then either use my Acronis bootable media CD (which I've tested and boots despite all the secure boot/UEFI/GPT mania going about users like myself) to reinstall the Acronis disk image.

    OR I use a Widnows 8.1 bootable disk with the ISO (which I've tested to boot) to reinstall the Windows created system image. (I could also use the recovery drive I created in Win 8.1, which just to add, however irrelvanat it might be, includes my OEM factory default partition which was copied as part of the recovery flash drive creation)

    Would either of those restore solutions give me a reasonably likely working PC again - taking into account all the stuff I don't understand like the Windows 8.1 OEM key being on the motherboard (which I would understand in terms of Windows activation and authentication could have a negative impact on restoring images over an OEM installed OS and it's partitions)

    If anyone can put my probably paranoid worries to bed, and verify that these procedures actually work in the new version of Windows - I'd be much appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Someone who is fumbling their way through this thing :@

    **EDIT** PS, I suppose I could test this myself - but blah blah excuses blah blah I'm not much an expert, and use my PC to work, and if if I'm left without a working PC, or if I need to reinstall Windows from scratch and the image restores STILL don't work - then I lose all my company installed apps and can't work :'(

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Canada
    Posts : 1,950
    windows 8.1 Update 1 Pro 64bit


    If you make an image backup of your drive with Acronis, you can use that image to recover to exactly what it was, the OS, programs, data, partitions etc. It will be exactly the same. I use Acronis Premium and it saved my bacon on a couple of occasions.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Canada
    Posts : 1,950
    windows 8.1 Update 1 Pro 64bit


    Thanks for the rep. It does work for an OEM machine, basically you are restoring the exact same image.

    As for the 2nd part regarding OEM iso disc, a member here (genet) was kind enough to make a tutorial, follow post # 8

    Need help formatted genuine windows 8 in lenovo

    Happy computing.
    Last edited by Nuccii; 27 Jun 2014 at 22:14. Reason: Ommited the link
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 53
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Thank you Nuccii. That perfectly addresses my concerns!

    Sorry I couldn't reply sooner. I am currently limited, as I'm sure you're aware, to the no. of posts I can make as a new member.

    Cheers!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Posts : 15
    Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center 64-bits.


    Quote Originally Posted by rowlands111 View Post
    Thank you Nuccii. That perfectly addresses my concerns!

    Sorry I couldn't reply sooner. I am currently limited, as I'm sure you're aware, to the no. of posts I can make as a new member.

    Cheers!
    Hello Rowlands

    I know your problem is already solved however,

    How about Windows System Image? It's also a very good tool and personally love it, since it's integrated with Windows RE. And they do work perfectly with your OEM version of Windows.

    You should be able to read more about it, in an article I wrote about it here: Windows RE Image Recovery

    Let me know you toughts about this System Image tool, personally I love it.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 53
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by Yuri View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by rowlands111 View Post
    Thank you Nuccii. That perfectly addresses my concerns!

    Sorry I couldn't reply sooner. I am currently limited, as I'm sure you're aware, to the no. of posts I can make as a new member.

    Cheers!
    Hello Rowlands

    I know your problem is already solved however,

    How about Windows System Image? It's also a very good tool and personally love it, since it's integrated with Windows RE. And they do work perfectly with your OEM version of Windows.

    You should be able to read more about it, in an article I wrote about it here: Windows RE Image Recovery

    Let me know you toughts about this System Image tool, personally I love it.
    Hey Yuri,

    Personally, I did give the Windows sytem image some consideration when it came to a back up solution. (I like your web site btw)

    I appreciate you posting in terms of an OEM valid solution! The reason whey I'm being specific to this, is that recently, I hosed the Windows bootloader/efI/MBR....whatever it's called now in Windows 8.1! And believe it or not, Acer had to replace the whole hard drive, and reinstall the UEFI! :S That led me to believe there was some issues when restoring an image onto OEM hardware, be it bare metal, or a non booting OS. But, there was probably other variables that led Acer to replacing the disk.

    All those details aside hehe, now that you mention it, i'll probably make a Windows image onto my external hdd just in case.

    Would you mind me asking, as I've just ran through the Windows image steps a few minutes ago now that you mention this solution; do you have any idea why Windows isn't including Acer's recovery partition? I don't get the option for ''Push Button Recovery'' in the backup drive options. Do you reckon that would be an issue at all..as there are the options for EFI and the small recovery partition (which I THINK is the WinRE thing)

    Cheers Yuri!
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Posts : 53
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    PS - When I hosed the bootloader, I didn't have any recovery or backup solutions created hence why the PC was sent to Acer.

    Yes...just shoot me now for being so silly as to not create the media :'( Hehe
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    Quote Originally Posted by rowlands111 View Post
    PS - When I hosed the bootloader, I didn't have any recovery or backup solutions created hence why the PC was sent to Acer.

    Yes...just shoot me now for being so silly as to not create the media :'( Hehe
    Yea just for clarity regardless of what program you use you need to Image the complete disk/SSD don't make the mistake of making images of your partitions. A Disk Image is a complete image of your disk.

    Now I do keep images of my C:\ partition, as if only windows is screwed up I can just restore C:\ partition if other things are going on I just restore the Disk Image. I also keep these Images up to date. Disk about once a month and C:\ partition about once a week. I also don't keep any data files on my C:\ Partition. Data files daily two Cloud systems and one hard copy here on a external drive

    I personally didn't have a lot of luck with Acronis THI. Acronis started telling us in 2012 that they were UEFI ready, well they weren't and even into 2014 version they were still having failures with restores. I believe around March they finally got it right don't remember which build number. I don't much care as I've moved my back ups to Macrium Reflect for my UEFI and Windows 8 machines. The Win 7 MBR machines are for sure good with ATHI. And My UEFI machines are for sure good with MR
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Posts : 53
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by Clintlgm View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by rowlands111 View Post
    PS - When I hosed the bootloader, I didn't have any recovery or backup solutions created hence why the PC was sent to Acer.

    Yes...just shoot me now for being so silly as to not create the media :'( Hehe
    Yea just for clarity regardless of what program you use you need to Image the complete disk/SSD don't make the mistake of making images of your partitions. A Disk Image is a complete image of your disk.

    Now I do keep images of my C:\ partition, as if only windows is screwed up I can just restore C:\ partition if other things are going on I just restore the Disk Image. I also keep these Images up to date. Disk about once a month and C:\ partition about once a week. I also don't keep any data files on my C:\ Partition. Data files daily two Cloud systems and one hard copy here on a external drive

    I personally didn't have a lot of luck with Acronis THI. Acronis started telling us in 2012 that they were UEFI ready, well they weren't and even into 2014 version they were still having failures with restores. I believe around March they finally got it right don't remember which build number. I don't much care as I've moved my back ups to Macrium Reflect for my UEFI and Windows 8 machines. The Win 7 MBR machines are for sure good with ATHI. And My UEFI machines are for sure good with MR
    I won't now just to be safe, cheers! Will definitely select ''Disk Mode'' in True Image 2014 as opposed to just manually selecting all of the partitions. (if I continue to use that product as the go to solution)


    [Quote\Acronis started telling us in 2012 that they were UEFI ready, well they weren't and even into 2014 version they were still having failures with restores. I believe around March they finally got it right don't remember which build number. I don't much care as I've moved my back ups to Macrium Reflect for my UEFI and Windows 8 machines. The Win 7 MBR machines are for sure good with ATHI. And My UEFI machines are for sure good with MR[/QUOTE]

    You sir, are a scholar for giving me the above info - I will check out Macrium as a matter of urgency, as it's nice to get confirmation that software actually works in these new configurations.

    ( I really hope the above quote attempt works haha)
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Quote Originally Posted by rowlands111 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Clintlgm View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by rowlands111 View Post
    PS - When I hosed the bootloader, I didn't have any recovery or backup solutions created hence why the PC was sent to Acer.

    Yes...just shoot me now for being so silly as to not create the media :'( Hehe
    Yea just for clarity regardless of what program you use you need to Image the complete disk/SSD don't make the mistake of making images of your partitions. A Disk Image is a complete image of your disk.

    Now I do keep images of my C:\ partition, as if only windows is screwed up I can just restore C:\ partition if other things are going on I just restore the Disk Image. I also keep these Images up to date. Disk about once a month and C:\ partition about once a week. I also don't keep any data files on my C:\ Partition. Data files daily two Cloud systems and one hard copy here on a external drive

    I personally didn't have a lot of luck with Acronis THI. Acronis started telling us in 2012 that they were UEFI ready, well they weren't and even into 2014 version they were still having failures with restores. I believe around March they finally got it right don't remember which build number. I don't much care as I've moved my back ups to Macrium Reflect for my UEFI and Windows 8 machines. The Win 7 MBR machines are for sure good with ATHI. And My UEFI machines are for sure good with MR
    I won't now just to be safe, cheers! Will definitely select ''Disk Mode'' in True Image 2014 as opposed to just manually selecting all of the partitions. (if I continue to use that product as the go to solution)


    [Quote\Acronis started telling us in 2012 that they were UEFI ready, well they weren't and even into 2014 version they were still having failures with restores. I believe around March they finally got it right don't remember which build number. I don't much care as I've moved my back ups to Macrium Reflect for my UEFI and Windows 8 machines. The Win 7 MBR machines are for sure good with ATHI. And My UEFI machines are for sure good with MR
    You sir, are a scholar for giving me the above info - I will check out Macrium as a matter of urgency, as it's nice to get confirmation that software actually works in these new configurations.

    ( I really hope the above quote attempt works haha)[/QUOTE]

    Thanks for the rep points, If you have the latest version of ATHI and you create a disk image it should restore and boot. I don't know or sure but I follow several thread in Acronis support forum. The people there are having success now. As far as a separate C:\ partition image that is a good thing as most times its all you need to save your butt, but if you lose your hard drive or have one in the process of dyeing your going to need the Disk Image. UEFI is a different thing all together and it needs the 3 or 4 partition created on install to boot operate. The thing I like about MR is that it works first off, 2nd they follow there support forum regularly, and their tech support all Speak English as native language.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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