Frustrations will quickly mount when your computer crashes, fails or otherwise prevents you from booting up and getting to work. There are many reasons for computer failure, ranging from an operating system bug to a faulty piece of hardware.
It could take a long time and hundreds of dollars in repair before the problem is resolved, and even then, most repair shops will not preserve (backup or restore) your data, operating system or applications. This is why it is so very important to perform backups of all of your important data on a regular basis. But even then, you will still have to reinstall your applications and operating system before you can restore any of the personal data you may have backed up. In the end, you spend a lot of money and time – but there is a better way!
Use a cloning program such as Acronis True Image to create a fully restorable system image backup of your PC. Then, if your PC crashes, has a failed piece of hardware, or otherwise needs to be repaired, you won’t have to worry about losing all of your files, pictures, applications and operating system, or the configurations and personal settings you have set up over time. You will be able to use that system image to put everything right back the way it was before you had to send the system out for repair. Of course, you will need to create a new system image every so often to keep it up-to-date.
Cloning tools provide users and administrators a pretty good option for correcting and recovering from just about any PC or server failure quickly and conveniently. Acronis True Image is a Retail Windows specific software, but there are many other great alternatives available for any platform. Clonezilla is another similar software that handles Linux and Windows, is open source and best of all, is free!
Cloning a system does not require a PhD, anyone can do it. A walk-through or how to is always helpful though!
Note: The following process includes a step that includes enabling the use of the Volume Shadow Copy Service. It is very important to enable this option on Windows domain controllers and Microsoft Exchange servers otherwise the restoration of the image file will fail.
Assuming Acronis True Image and Acronis True Image Agent have already been installed on your computer or server:
1) Start the Acronis True Image Enterprise application Pictured Below)
2) We want to make an exact image of the hard drive.
Click on the Backup option on the program interface.
3) The Create New Backup Wizard will begin, click next.
4) Then choose the “My Computer” option on the following screen.
5) Acronis True Image will analyze the configuration and have you choose which partition to make a backup image of. Choose your main partition to image.
6) Then you will be asked where you want to store the image. Choose an external hard drive (preferably) and give the file a name, for example, DC-1.tib.
7) On the next screen, select to create a new full backup archive. Click next.
8) Choose Set the Options Manually on the next screen. Click next.
9) * VERY IMPORTANT for Domain Controllers * – Select Database Support, Volume Shadow Copy Service from the left pane tree. Then choose the Enable VSS Support option and click next.
10) You can ignore the next screen (it is for entering notes) by clicking next and then you will see the summary screen.
11) Double check this screen to make sure that all the backup options are correct and then click Proceed.
12) You then will see a progress indicator of the operation in progress.
13) When the image has been successfully created, you will see the following prompt.
Use imaging programs like this regularly to ensure that you will always be able to quickly and easily return your system to the way you want it