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Booting From An ISO Image On A USB Flash Drive. Should It Be So Difficult?


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#1 ARNKUSA

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Posted 18 August 2016 - 03:06 PM

The idea is I'd like to create an image of my current Windows 7 system, including a few core programs, so that in the event of a catastrophic failure I can very easily boot from a USB flash drive. 
 
I've tried several methods documented online but nothing seems to work. I made an image using EaseUs, which creates a .pbd file. I then saved it as an .iso file using PowerISO. 
 
My USB flash drive is 256GB. The image file is roughly 20GB. I've read to format the drive as NTFS. I've also read that Windows could never boot from an NTFS formatted USB drive, and to use FAT32. Which apparently has a limit of 32GB.
 
Being that my files are around 20GB, I have tried both formats to no avail. I've used most of the suggested apps too, like RUFUS or the Windows 7 USB Tool for example. I've also tried some command line tutorials. Nothing.
 
But what if the image file is 75GB? 100GB? All I want is to create a mirror image of my setup, so that when Microsoft updates & reboots & jacks my computer I can get back up & running right away.  
 
If you could provide some insight into what I'm doing wrong I would really appreciate it. I'd like to get to work (and not for Microsoft for free). 
 
Advanced thank you...


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#2 JohnC_21

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Posted 18 August 2016 - 03:31 PM

I don't believe you can convert an Easeus Image file a bootable iso file. Why not create a bootable USB of Easeus Todo. Use this to recover your image from an external disk or USB flash drive. An external hard drive is a better option than a USB flash drive

 

If you want core programs to recover data from your computer look at a bootable DVD or USB of a live linux disk created using Rufus. Note: If your computer is UEFI then you should enable Legacy or CSM boot in the UEFI settings but Rufus should have booted a Windows 7 iso in UEFI mode.

 

Some good linux recovery isos are

 

UBCD  -  Includes an older version of Parted Magic

FatDog64

 

Using the above would allow you to copy data from a disk that does not boot Windows as long as the file system is not corrupted. 

 

You can always connect your USB flash drive or external HDD with the disk image to another computer with Easeus and explore the image to recover any important files.

 

http://www.easeus.com/todo-backup-guide/explore-backup-image.html

 



#3 Viper_Security

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Posted 18 August 2016 - 03:43 PM

I Do think it has to be FAT32, and have you tried using PowerISO, or Acronis? i used acronis to create a back up of my Win10 Install before i wiped and installed Linux, booted to my back up FD and installs no problem.

 

Try Acronis or PowerISO :)

 

NTFS is New Technology File System.

 

and FAT is File Allocation Table.

 

windows mainly uses NTFS while almost all devices use FAT32 at least.


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#4 RolandJS

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Posted 16 September 2016 - 02:11 PM

I like what the thread starter is wanting to do!  As close as I got was:  making a Macrium Reflect usb boot stick and an Image For Windows usb boot stick.  I would have to attach one of my two usb 1TB platter-driven backup HDs, boot the desired usb stick, and let the restore program do its thing.


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#5 MDD1963

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Posted 08 October 2016 - 07:02 PM

Good 'ole Clonezilla.....

 

Not pretty, but, it seems to always work.

 

(When I cloned my Win7 system prior to upgrading to an SSD, I did so using AOMEI Backupper and Clonezilla. The former failed, where Clonezilla worked. Not sure what went wrong with the super easy/intuitive AOMEI procedure, but,....I've stuck with Clonezilla since.)

 

Numerous tutorials on Youtube pertaining to Clonezilla. 


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#6 MDD1963

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Posted 09 October 2016 - 09:31 PM

You might be able to format your USB flash drive into two partitions, perhaps one for the recovery/rescue disk to allow the restore, and the other partition to contain the image to restore from.

 

(it appears the OP is trying to skip the step of booting into a WinPE recovery/recovery environment, and instead, simply desires to instantly boot from and restore from USB flash by simply booting from it?)

 

You need something to boot from, however. And, you need a location to store your image.


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#7 RolandJS

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Posted 09 October 2016 - 10:23 PM

Good 'ole Clonezilla.....

Hi!  Which one of the five Clonezilla ISOs or ZIPs did you download from the Clonezilla web site's download page?


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#8 MDD1963

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Posted 10 October 2016 - 04:48 AM

Clonezilla Live (as opposed to SE) , Stable, AMD64, Iso...

 

(I need to retest AOMEI Backupper, something went wrong when I tried a restore an image with this a year ago, but I can't definitively rule out a mistake on my part; the GUI method of making or restoring an image is much less 'mistake-prone' compared to Clonezilla, where clicking the wrong drive or partition can quickly render a system a proverbial doorstop. )


Edited by MDD1963, 10 October 2016 - 04:54 AM.

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#9 tos226

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Posted 10 October 2016 - 10:09 PM

You might be able to format your USB flash drive into two partitions, perhaps one for the recovery/rescue disk to allow the restore, and the other partition to contain the image to restore from.

Might not work. I once tried, for the same reason, making two partitions on a 32gig flash. It worked. But it was useless, because Windows could only see the first partition. I googled about it, and it appears that a flash stick is a "removable" device which can't have partitions to windows liking. An external drive is considered "fixed" and can have partitions, of course.



#10 neuronic

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Posted 11 October 2016 - 06:16 PM

 

The idea is I'd like to create an image of my current Windows 7 system, including a few core programs, so that in the event of a catastrophic failure I can very easily boot from a USB flash drive. 
 
I've tried several methods documented online but nothing seems to work. I made an image using EaseUs, which creates a .pbd file. I then saved it as an .iso file using PowerISO. 
 
My USB flash drive is 256GB. The image file is roughly 20GB. I've read to format the drive as NTFS. I've also read that Windows could never boot from an NTFS formatted USB drive, and to use FAT32. Which apparently has a limit of 32GB.
 
Being that my files are around 20GB, I have tried both formats to no avail. I've used most of the suggested apps too, like RUFUS or the Windows 7 USB Tool for example. I've also tried some command line tutorials. Nothing.
 
But what if the image file is 75GB? 100GB? All I want is to create a mirror image of my setup, so that when Microsoft updates & reboots & jacks my computer I can get back up & running right away.  
 
If you could provide some insight into what I'm doing wrong I would really appreciate it. I'd like to get to work (and not for Microsoft for free). 
 
Advanced thank you...

 

 

I know some folks think this is a great idea. I'm personally going to decent from it. 

 

Why wouldn't you just use your backup solution for this? 

 

I know that if I have catastrophic failure with my device I have a list of possible recovery options using my backup recovery solution.

 

  • Insert recovery manager USB/ISO disk -> Boot computer -> Recover the entire system as it was before the failure -> use computer
    • If the most current image isn't viable recover an older system state that works and the most current files and folders backup. 
  • Buy a new device with similar hardware and the same edition of Windows -> boot into safe mode -> install backup manager -> recover system state, files and folders -> reboot -> use computer
  • Buy a low powered device -> create a cloud VM in Azure or AWS -> boot with recovery ISO -> recover entire system as it was before the failure -> use VM
  • Mount the disk image created by my backup solution on a new device -> recover important data -> use data

This works with or without access to a local backup image.If an encrypted local backup exists it will be used before an encrypted cloud image. 

This works with or without internet access if a local backup is available. 

 

I apologize if I am missing the point. 



#11 RolandJS

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Posted 12 October 2016 - 04:36 AM

neuronic, you gave me some good backup/restore ideas, thanks!


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#12 ARNKUSA

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Posted 14 October 2016 - 04:50 AM

 

 

 

I apologize if I am missing the point. 

 

 

I don't think you're missing the point, but that's all a bit over my head. 

 

For the time being, I've chosen AOMEI. It's the only software that allows me to create a bootable USB or DVD & then make a full backup of my C drive to a large external hard drive. I've recovered the PC once already using this method after upgrading to Windows 10.

 

Thanks for all of the suggestions so far. I'll have to check out Clonezilla, but for now it's cool.


Edited by ARNKUSA, 14 October 2016 - 04:51 AM.


#13 MDD1963

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Posted 16 October 2016 - 04:27 AM

AOMEI, EaseUs Todo Backup, and Macrium Reflect all allow creating bootable rescue media on either USB or CD/DVD, and all allow making a full image/backup of the entire drive to a larger drive.

 

(the above programs allow making an image from within Windows, whereas Clonezilla is not a Windows program, but a bootable linux LiveCD)


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