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Solved I want to make an "image" of my system..


probe

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Posts
19
#1
I downloaded RecImg Manager because I thought it would make an image of my system just after I removed all the crap and bloat that comes with an HP laptop. When I went to restore this image with RecImg Manager, it basically is no more then doing a "refresh" with Windows (keeping everything I currently have too), which I don't want. I want to restore my laptop to a date in the past, when I have removed the crap ware and bloat programs.

I want to save an image with just pure Windows 8 or 8.1 and be able to return to that image when I need to. Is there a program that does that? Or, am I maybe using RecImg Manager wrong?
 

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 (64 bit)
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Clintlgm

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Lacombe, Louisiana

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#2
I would highly recommend Macrium Reflect Free edition it will create images as you like and restore to the exact condition as was present when the image was created.
 

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Pro MC
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Asus G75VW / Z97 Pro
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-3610QM / I7-4790K
    Motherboard
    Z97 Pro
    Memory
    16 GB Hyundai HTM315156CFR8C-PB PC3-12800
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVIDIA GeForce GTX 670M (GF114M)
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mrgeek

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112
#3
I would highly recommend Macrium Reflect Free edition it will create images as you like and restore to the exact condition as was present when the image was created.
Clint; does Macrium Free allow OS backup only, like the op wants ? In other words, choose not to backup My Docs, My Music, etc in order to make smaller image ? I think older Free editions were full disk backup only. I see a new v6 version just came out a couple weeks back.
 

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1

probe

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Posts
19
#4
Yeah, I want to "reset" to my current Win 8.1 OS, BUT, without all the bloatware that it came with and gets re-installed when you do a normal "system reset".

I have spent an hour deleting all the crap software and now am looking at a clean Win 8.1 OS, with all current "important" MS updates only. I want to return to this OS in the future by doing a system reset with my clean image. No documents or my software added, as I have that saved to a thumbdrive and can reinstall it easily.
 

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System One

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    Windows 8.1 (64 bit)
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Clintlgm

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Lacombe, Louisiana

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894
#5
Yeah, I want to "reset" to my current Win 8.1 OS, BUT, without all the bloatware that it came with and gets re-installed when you do a normal "system reset".

I have spent an hour deleting all the crap software and now am looking at a clean Win 8.1 OS, with all current "important" MS updates only. I want to return to this OS in the future by doing a system reset with my clean image. No documents or my software added, as I have that saved to a thumbdrive and can reinstall it easily.
Yes if you take an image of a disk, when you restore it, it will be exactly as it was when you created the Image.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Pro MC
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Asus G75VW / Z97 Pro
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-3610QM / I7-4790K
    Motherboard
    Z97 Pro
    Memory
    16 GB Hyundai HTM315156CFR8C-PB PC3-12800
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVIDIA GeForce GTX 670M (GF114M)
    Sound Card
    VIA 6.0.10.1600
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 850 Pro 256, Samsung 850 Pro 1TB
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    30 down 3 up
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    NIS and Malwarebytes

probe

New Member
Posts
19
#6
Right, and I'm wondering what to use to restore it if and when the need to do so arises. Is there a command line where Windows 8.1 will restore it? Or, should I use Macrium Reflect, will it restore just the OS the way I have it now?
 

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 (64 bit)
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    HP
    CPU
    AMD
    Memory
    4 GB
    Browser
    Cyberfox 64bit
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    Comodo Suite

Mark Phelps

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#7
Few points to consider about using Macrium Reflect (MR) ...

MR allows for either (1) image backups (entire contents of one or more partitions), or (2) file/folder backups (selective files and folders). It does not provide the capability to ONLY backup the operating system components. I know of no third-party backup tool that DOES.

You can not do an MR image restore from the command line, or while running the OS; instead, you make an MR boot CD/USB, boot from that, and use that to do a restore.

The MR image restore rewrites the entire partition that was backed up, not just selective files; so basically, there is no way, using MR, to backup/restore only the operating system components.

Actually ... Windows System Restore is supposed to do just that ... backup/restore the operating system components, as it does not back up user files or folders.
 

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Ztruker

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#8

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10 Pro X64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo IdeaCenter K450
    CPU
    Intel Quad Core i7-4770 @ 3.4Ghz
    Motherboard
    Lenovo
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    16.0GB PC3-12800 DDR3 SDRAM 1600 MHz
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    HP h2207
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    [email protected]
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    250GB Samsung EVO SATA-3 SSD;
    2TB Seagate ST2000DM001 SATA-2;
    1.5TB Seagate ST3150041AS SATA
    PSU
    500W
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    Wired USB
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    Wired USB
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    3GB Up, 30GB Down
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    SeaMonkey
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    Windows Defender; MBAM Pro
    Other Info
    UEFI/GPT
    PLDS DVD-RW DH16AERSH

SIW2

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5,360
#9
Ther are sevral imaging programs with good free versions.

I use Aomei mostly. It has a lot of functions you don't get anywhere else. Restore to different hardware, for example.

Best Free Backup Software for Windows 10, Windows 8.1/8, Windows 7, Vista, XP

However, Paragon is the only freebie imaging program to allow excluding files/folders from an image, which is a useful feature.

https://www.paragon-software.com/home/br-free/

Macrium works fine, but doesn't have those extra features.

Macrium Reflect Free

There are some others as well, e.g a cut down acronis for users of WD/seagate drives, Easeus also does one. Not sure if O&O have a free version, etc.
 

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System One

  • OS
    7/8/ubuntu/Linux Deepin
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    PC/Desktop

Ztruker

Well-Known Member
VIP Member
Guru
#11
I use Acronis and like it as it automates the image backup for me.
Not worth the cost though.
 

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 10 Pro X64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo IdeaCenter K450
    CPU
    Intel Quad Core i7-4770 @ 3.4Ghz
    Motherboard
    Lenovo
    Memory
    16.0GB PC3-12800 DDR3 SDRAM 1600 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel Integrated HD Graphics
    Sound Card
    Realtek HD Audio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP h2207
    Screen Resolution
    [email protected]
    Hard Drives
    250GB Samsung EVO SATA-3 SSD;
    2TB Seagate ST2000DM001 SATA-2;
    1.5TB Seagate ST3150041AS SATA
    PSU
    500W
    Keyboard
    Wired USB
    Mouse
    Wired USB
    Internet Speed
    3GB Up, 30GB Down
    Browser
    SeaMonkey
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender; MBAM Pro
    Other Info
    UEFI/GPT
    PLDS DVD-RW DH16AERSH
#12
KISS, try the Windows 8.1 System Image Backup

Go to Control Panel, and under System and Security, select Save Backup Copies with File History. On that page you will find in the bottom left corner a link for System Image Backup. Click and follow the very simple steps to create a full image that will include the Windows system partition or drive (usually a hundred megabytes or so). You can find easy restore steps in help or online.

I used to use Macrium Free for years, but this is the neatest and cleanest way to get full image backups. If you're not on 8.1 this is a good time to move up. Or wait for 10, this perk will be around from now on. Good Luck!

SIB is faster than Macrium, too. You could do one image clean as you have it now and then another periodically with your current status. (This is good if you just need a good install, even with all programs installed. Remember there are lots of Windows Updates to reload if you go way back!)
 

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1.1
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    PC/Desktop
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    Custom Build
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    Intel Core i7-4771 @3.5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS Z87-K
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mrgeek

New Member
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112
#13
Few points to consider about using Macrium Reflect (MR) ...

MR allows for either (1) image backups (entire contents of one or more partitions), or (2) file/folder backups (selective files and folders). It does not provide the capability to ONLY backup the operating system components. I know of no third-party backup tool that DOES.
The MR image restore rewrites the entire partition that was backed up, not just selective files; so basically, there is no way, using MR, to backup/restore only the operating system components.
Actually ... Windows System Restore is supposed to do just that ... backup/restore the operating system components, as it does not back up user files or folders.
Thanks, that answers my Q in post 3. I do exactly what the op wants to do, using Acronis 2015 and just excl my User and OneDrive folders. The OS image is only 22gb and takes about an hour to do and validate. I allows a Recovery Manager at startup by hitting F11 which boots into Acronis and you just select the image from an ext drive. I actually had to do this once when I had ransomware lock all my files. I mounted the TI image and then my files which I backup regularly and only lost 2 days work. Lesson learned.
Agree that System Restore will serve his purpose but I think he wants a copy to fall back on, sort of like a 'custom refresh' image.
 

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1

probe

New Member
Posts
19
#14
Hey thanks everyone and Bergie532 I'm keeping your instructions for possibly future use.. Have a look Bergie at what I did instead. Maybe your way is even easier.

I found the below instructions on another Win8 help site and this is what they said to do and what I did, let me know if anyone else was thinking of this, it seems the most direct way without involving 3rd party software:

Run the following "command prompt with admin rights" to create a new recovery image. You can place the custom image in any folder or give it any name you like, so feel free to change the “C:\CustomRefreshImages\Image1″ part of the command:

recimg /CreateImage C:\CustomRefreshImages\Image1

This command creates a custom refresh image from the current system state and sets it as the default. When you refresh or reset your PC in the future, your custom image will be used. If this is all you wanted to do, you can stop now.

To create and Switch Between Multiple Images:

Windows 8 allows you to have more than one image. In the future, you can run the command again to create a new image. For example, the following command would create another refresh image known as Image2 and set is as the default image:

recimg /CreateImage C:\CustomRefreshImages\Image2
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now I haven't had the need to "refresh" yet, but supposedly I can just go to the standard "refresh" (you get to from the charms bar, then settings) and it will bring up MY refresh image, not the "original" refresh that has all the bloatware software that came with the laptop along with the OS. I ran this before I put any of my software on the machine so it will go back to a "clean" refresh.

I would have preferred making my own "restore" image, but apparently, Windows wont let you "restore" your OWN image. I read that there is only ONE restore image allowed and that's the one with all the bloatware.
Funny thing, I also read that MS will sell you a "clean" OS of 8.1 without all the bloatware for $99. Don't know how true that is, but not worth $99 at any rate. Especially when I will probably have to do this all over again with Win 10.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 (64 bit)
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    HP
    CPU
    AMD
    Memory
    4 GB
    Browser
    Cyberfox 64bit
    Antivirus
    Comodo Suite

Clintlgm

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Lacombe, Louisiana

Posts
894
#15
I used Acronis from 2010 through 2015, actually 2014. I started using Macrium Reflect with my notebook in 2012 at that time Acronis advertised that they could recover a GPT disk bootable but that was not the case. In 2014 I still have 2 computers using Acronis and I still could not just create an Image and have it restore and boot. Users claim that the 2015 version did work I don't know as I installed in on one computer they had completely changed the UI and that just convinced me to make the move to MR. The biggest problem with Acronis is there lack of support. They have a few good people in there support forum but Acronis doesn't seem to care or have any interest. So if your only running BIOS/MBR computers it works great.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Pro MC
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Asus G75VW / Z97 Pro
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-3610QM / I7-4790K
    Motherboard
    Z97 Pro
    Memory
    16 GB Hyundai HTM315156CFR8C-PB PC3-12800
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVIDIA GeForce GTX 670M (GF114M)
    Sound Card
    VIA 6.0.10.1600
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 850 Pro 256, Samsung 850 Pro 1TB
    Internet Speed
    30 down 3 up
    Browser
    Explorer 11
    Antivirus
    NIS and Malwarebytes

Clintlgm

Active Member
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Lacombe, Louisiana

Posts
894
#16
Hey thanks everyone and Bergie532 I'm keeping your instructions for possibly future use.. Have a look Bergie at what I did instead. Maybe your way is even easier.

I found the below instructions on another Win8 help site and this is what they said to do and what I did, let me know if anyone else was thinking of this, it seems the most direct way without involving 3rd party software:

Run the following "command prompt with admin rights" to create a new recovery image. You can place the custom image in any folder or give it any name you like, so feel free to change the “C:\CustomRefreshImages\Image1″ part of the command:

recimg /CreateImage C:\CustomRefreshImages\Image1

This command creates a custom refresh image from the current system state and sets it as the default. When you refresh or reset your PC in the future, your custom image will be used. If this is all you wanted to do, you can stop now.

To create and Switch Between Multiple Images:

Windows 8 allows you to have more than one image. In the future, you can run the command again to create a new image. For example, the following command would create another refresh image known as Image2 and set is as the default image:

recimg /CreateImage C:\CustomRefreshImages\Image2
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now I haven't had the need to "refresh" yet, but supposedly I can just go to the standard "refresh" (you get to from the charms bar, then settings) and it will bring up MY refresh image, not the "original" refresh that has all the bloatware software that came with the laptop along with the OS. I ran this before I put any of my software on the machine so it will go back to a "clean" refresh.

I would have preferred making my own "restore" image, but apparently, Windows wont let you "restore" your OWN image. I read that there is only ONE restore image allowed and that's the one with all the bloatware.
Funny thing, I also read that MS will sell you a "clean" OS of 8.1 without all the bloatware for $99. Don't know how true that is, but not worth $99 at any rate. Especially when I will probably have to do this all over again with Win 10.
You can get a free one here direct from MS Create installation media for Windows 8.1 - Windows Help You'll have the option to create an ISO. As long as you download the same version you already have it will activate using your stored product Key in your UEFI/BIOS
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 Pro MC
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Asus G75VW / Z97 Pro
    CPU
    Intel Core i7-3610QM / I7-4790K
    Motherboard
    Z97 Pro
    Memory
    16 GB Hyundai HTM315156CFR8C-PB PC3-12800
    Graphics Card(s)
    nVIDIA GeForce GTX 670M (GF114M)
    Sound Card
    VIA 6.0.10.1600
    Screen Resolution
    1080
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 850 Pro 256, Samsung 850 Pro 1TB
    Internet Speed
    30 down 3 up
    Browser
    Explorer 11
    Antivirus
    NIS and Malwarebytes

SIW2

Well-Known Member
Team Member
Posts
5,360
#17
That is not the same as image. Imaging includes all your existing programs, settings, etc.

@mrgeek,

Windows system image is built in since Vista. Though it was only included in Vista Ultimate. All editions of windows 7/8.1 and 10 have it. Not as flexible as 3rd party programs and the image is huge as it uses vhd\vhdx format.
 

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System One

  • OS
    7/8/ubuntu/Linux Deepin
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop

Steve C

Member
Power User
UK

Posts
275
#18

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System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 64 bit
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    System Manufacturer/Model
    Home Build
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    Intel i3570K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte GA-77X-UD5H
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Sapphire R9 280X Toxic
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    Realtek on motherboard
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    Viewsonic VP2770
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    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    Intel 520 180GB SSD
    Seagate 2T HDD
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    XFX 850W
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    Nanoxia Deep Silence 1
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    Microsoft
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probe

New Member
Posts
19
#19
SIW2 said: That is not the same as image. Imaging includes all your existing programs, settings, etc.

Actually, I think that IS what I am looking for....just PURE Windows 8.1 OS (I will install all MY software after the OS is installed)

Although, now that Win 10 is coming out, might as well wait to do this with Win 10.

Thanks for the link though Clintlgm

 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1 (64 bit)
    Computer type
    Laptop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    HP
    CPU
    AMD
    Memory
    4 GB
    Browser
    Cyberfox 64bit
    Antivirus
    Comodo Suite

mrgeek

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112
#20
SIW2 said: That is not the same as image. Imaging includes all your existing programs, settings, etc.
Actually, I think that IS what I am looking for....just PURE Windows 8.1 OS (I will install all MY software after the OS is installed)
Although, now that Win 10 is coming out, might as well wait to do this with Win 10.
Thanks for the link though Clintlgm
I think he directed that at me and mis-understood. By excluding OneDrive and User folders, I DO have an image with just Windows and all installed Programs, but no Pictures, Music, etc that take up a lot of space and I back those up separately and often. It's too time consuming to find and re-install all programs and updates so I just do that with updated 8.1 every couple weeks.
You might use Clint's suggestion to get a clean copy of Windows thru the media creation tool so you have a fall back image. This would be pure Windows 8.1 Update 1 which is 8.1 almost thru end of 2014 which seems to be what you want. No programs or OEM drivers included but you'll need to install Windows updates issued since then. But likely, this image is much farther along than using the OEM Recovery Drive to refresh your computer. Windows 8.1.1 can fit on just one DVD and contains the setup.exe. A similar Windows 10 ISO may not be available for quite a while after you get the upgrade, in case you're thinking to do a clean install. Good Luck.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1

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