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Please Help Me Create a System Image


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#1 Rocky Bennett

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Posted 17 May 2015 - 01:40 PM

Hello All,

I am pretty new to this whole Bleeping Computer stuff, but I sure have been having a lot of fun since I joined. My problem today is creating a system image. Here is my story.

 

1.  I decided that when it is time to upgrade to Windows 10, I would like to do so via a clean install. In order to do this safely, I figured that it would be best to have a system image of my machine before I attempted a clean install.

 

2. So here is where I began running into problems. I did not know that a system image was so large, I thought that I could store a system image on a 32 gb USB drive. Following the directions that I was able to find here and there around the internet, the file that should contain my system image is like 70 gb or so. So then I decide to put this system image on a second internal hard drive, but my other hard drive has never been formatted. Now I need to transfer all of the data on that hard drive to an external hard drive so that I can format my internal hard drive. How do I move that data? Do I just click and drag or is there software to do this job? Then after I move the data, how do I format my hard drive? I have never formatted a hard drive before.

 

3. After I have done all of that, can I now follow the directions that I have and make a system image to my 2nd internal hard drive? Will any of this work as a plan to install Windows 10 as a clean install? Also, after I have a system image of my machine on the 2nd hard drive, can I then use that software as a means of re-installing the programs that are on my computer so that I can restore my system's functions after the clean install of Windows 10?

 

 

As you can see, I am confused and I am not sure what I am doing. Any help or guidance would be appreciated.

 

Attached is an image of my hard drives. Any other images that you need to help, I will try to provide.

 

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#2 Rocky Bennett

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Posted 17 May 2015 - 03:20 PM

To amend part 3 of my question above, do I have to create some kind of partition on me 2nd hard drive in order to create and store a system image? I guess that is what I originally meant when I was asking about formatting my hard drive. It seems that my target hard drive does not have any partitions, so do I need a partition and how do I create one?

 

Another question, what is the difference between a system image and a custom refresh image? I think that I can create a custom refresh image on one USB drive, will this help me in case I have a total system failure while installing Windows 10?


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#3 Rocky Bennett

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Posted 17 May 2015 - 03:44 PM

To add to my confusion, what is the difference between making a clone of my system drive and making a system image?


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#4 Drew1903

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Posted 17 May 2015 - 04:26 PM

Rocky,

Ok, I'll tackle all your queries:

Let's start w/ the idea that you are going to clean install 10 rather than do an in-place Upgrade, right?  Save data from your 8.1 which can be put into 10 after it is installed.  One cannot 'move' programs, only data.  Your User installed software will have to be reloaded once 10 is up & running.  It's a moot point having an image of your other, prior OS if you are clean installing 10.  The System Image is for recovering THAT OS.

As far as getting an Sys Image... > File History.  @ the bottom left corner of its window you will see System Image Backup, click that & follow the dots :) but, as I said that doesn't help anything in regard to clean installing 10.

Yes, just Drag & Drop.
 

To format a drive, Rt Clk on it > Format.

Oh & to partition a drive... when the install is being done, you specify the size for the drive it will use.  If that is less than the full drive space after the OS is installed the 'other' partition must be formatted in order for it to show & be used.
 

Cheers,
Drew
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#5 Rocky Bennett

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 08:47 AM

Thanks. I do appreciate the reply but I am still confused. Yes the system image is not really part of the Windows 10 install, it is a back up plan in case the Windows 10 install does not work or some other unseen catastrophe occurs. But my questions now are;

 

1. Do I need to format and create a partition in order to create a useable system image? Since I am new to computers this is a point that I am not clear about. Can I just create a system image and store it as a file on my hard drive and then use it as a back up in case of emergency?

 

Yesterday I created a custom refresh image, like this http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/tutorials/create-custom-refresh-image-in-windows-8/   I have that stored on a USB stick. I know it is a lot different than a system image, but do I still need a system image now that I have this other refresh image? Any input will be appreciated.


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