Backup question - cloning HDD

  Shortstop 14:09 20 Nov 2006


This may seem a silly question.

I have always manually backed up the My Documents files but I am now thinking that taking a clone of my set-up will help me do full formats quicker.

I am using only about 3.7 Gb of my 80 Gb HDD & would like to back up to DVD using Ghost or Acronis. My question is: will the program do this to a DVD-R or will it try to copy the 'whole' 80Gb - even though much of the disk is empty?

All advice appreciated.



  anskyber 15:58 20 Nov 2006

It only copies data so if it is not there you will not use the space. It will involve a lot of DVDs though if you are doing a full image which is a wise thing to do. I have a relatively new PC with 250GB of space but my back up fits onto 40gigs because my HDD is only partly filled.

The other thing is that Acronis, which I use, does some modest compression so the end file will be smaller than the total occupied space on the HDD.

  Shortstop 16:06 20 Nov 2006

Are you saying that, as I only have 3.7 Gb used in total, this would easily clone on a 4.7Gb DVD-R?



  anskyber 16:17 20 Nov 2006

Yes. You cannot have much on your HDD, the Operating system (XP) will need be included in your image. Have a look to see if it is on a separate partition because it will need to be imaged as well.

Acronis is very simple to use even if the instructions appear overwhelming. Acronis do a 15 day trial for their latest True Image 10 which is Vista compliant. Otherwise their version 7 was available for a free download, someone may know the link for you.

  rodriguez 16:24 20 Nov 2006

When I backed mine up I installed Windows, installed all the programs I use and set everything up and configured it how I wanted it. However this took up about 5.5 GB, so I copied an image of the drive to an old 8 GB hard drive which is now stored under the bed in case i need to reformat again. For this I used ImageCentre. click here for a bootable disc image I made. You can make an image file of your drive and save it to your main drive or a 2nd drive then go into Windows and burn it to DVD. This can then be restored straight from the DVD later on. When the disc is burned, it will look blank - that's just because all the files are in the boot sector and aren't shown.

  anskyber 16:56 20 Nov 2006

If you go Start then right click on my computer (not left click from the start panel) select manage, then disk management it will show the disc partitions.

  Technotiger 18:23 20 Nov 2006

Hi, I have just done a full backup of my C drive and an external usb drive (240Gb in total, with total 56Gb used). Backed up to second external usb drive, backup is 39.3Gb in size. Used Acronis Home 10.

Incidently if you download the Free Acronis V7, you then have the oportunity to purchase the latest V10 with a 40% discount.


  Technotiger 18:48 20 Nov 2006
  Shortstop 20:35 20 Nov 2006

I was worried that a clone of the HDD would want to copy the for space as well for partition management [although I could see that this made little sense]. Now it sounds like a simple back up to DVD-R as my PC only has the one partition and I already know the size of the files used from right-clicking the properties will fit onto this BUT:

RODRIGUEZ - that is exactly what I want a bootable disk that will restore my PC back to the state before I delete some file that I need ;o)

TECHNOTIGER - I have registered for Acronis 7.0 from your link, but cannot see a download option. Do you get the download link with the registration number and is the software unrestricted? Will this do the same as the link from Rodriguez i.e. make a bootable disk that can restore the OS & various programs [which is where I really want to go]?

Thanks again to everyone.


  Shortstop 20:36 20 Nov 2006

should read 'to copy the free space]

Damned wireless keyboard - lol

  Technotiger 21:01 20 Nov 2006

Try the 2nd one down in this list...then use the Licence No. they sent you, I think this should work,
with V9. Yes, you can make a Bootable Recovery CD with Acronis.

click here

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