[SOLVED] I'm still having trouble understanding the difference

nbartolo7

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between creating a USB recovery drive using the "create a recovery drive" option built in Windows 10, and using File History.

A Microsoft technical support member explained it this way, but it's basically Chinese to me : "File history will have all the backup for all the previous edits you have done on the file. USB drive recovery drive option will backup what was saved at that time."

What I think I got from the rest of the chat was that file history as its name suggests only backs up files and folders. While recovery drive backs up everything. Something like that. So, in the event of a really bad crash, recovery drive is much more useful than file history?

But how can a USB key be enough to backup the contents of a 2TB C:drive?
 

Nighthawk117

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He and all other people I've seen and talked to, say to use a USB key or CD(but that's old school). With 8Gb min, and 16Gb recommended.
The recovery drive is purely for repairing or restoring Windows to it's original state, it's not a backup solution.

"because the recovery drive isn't a system image. It doesn't contain your personal files, settings, or programs."
.

What he does mention is that you can restore a system image using the recovery drive. That makes more sense, for a system image though you will need a hard drive or SSD as they are huge. I periodically create a system image of my Windows boot drive to a 4TB hard drive.

For backing up your personal files regularly though you would still need to use File History.
 
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Nighthawk117

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A USB stick won't be enough, you'd need a USB SSD to backup that amount of data. I create a system image with Macrium Reflect myself, but I think the Windows recovery drive allows you to either backup just Windows itself or all your files and folders as well. For the latter you'll need a lot of space. If you try creating a recovery drive it should tell you how much space you'll need.
 

Nighthawk117

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He and all other people I've seen and talked to, say to use a USB key or CD(but that's old school). With 8Gb min, and 16Gb recommended.
The recovery drive is purely for repairing or restoring Windows to it's original state, it's not a backup solution.

"because the recovery drive isn't a system image. It doesn't contain your personal files, settings, or programs."
.

What he does mention is that you can restore a system image using the recovery drive. That makes more sense, for a system image though you will need a hard drive or SSD as they are huge. I periodically create a system image of my Windows boot drive to a 4TB hard drive.

For backing up your personal files regularly though you would still need to use File History.
 
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nbartolo7

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The recovery drive is purely for repairing or restoring Windows to it's original state, it's not a backup solution.
So basically, the recovery drive is exactly the same thing as me going to windows' official website and downloading their windows media installation tool on my USB stick? Nothing more than that? Both methods put the same info on the pen drive?
 

Nighthawk117

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So basically, the recovery drive is exactly the same thing as me going to windows' official website and downloading their windows media installation tool on my USB stick? Nothing more than that? Both methods put the same info on the pen drive?
Apart from the fact the recovery drive is based on the files from your system drive rather than the latest version of Windows, they seem to have exactly the same functionality. Both have repair tools, both let you restore to a system restore point and both allow you to reinstall Windows if in the formers case you included system files when you made it. So no I think you can achieve exactly the same with the Windows Installation Media. That may be slightly different with an OEM PC though, I think if you created a recovery drive from that it would include the factory installed apps as well but don't quote me.

All in all, it's pretty useless :) and certainly will not backup your important files.
 
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Eximo

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Recovery drive will grab drivers and user settings as well. So it will put Windows back the way you had it, but not your programs and data.

OEM recovery drives ARE system images. They just include the bare windows, drivers, and all the bloatware the OEM loaded.

But a true DISK image will capture everything on the drive/disc in question.
 
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