Question PC backup and restore options stink.

tmpc1066

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I come from the Mac world and use Carbon Copy Cloner which I consider to be the best backup / reinstall program in existence for regular people like me. I am now also using a PC and was hoping to find a CCC equivalent, but there doesn't appear to be one.

What do I want it to do?
  1. A differential backup with versioning.
  2. An external, bootable backup that can be used without the application that created it.
  3. The ability to access files on that bootable backup without the application that created it.
  4. The ability to write the contents (including the OS) of this bootable drive to a new drive installed in the computer that will boot and run properly on its own.
  5. No yearly subscriptions.
Do any of you know if anything like this exist?
 
I am now also using a PC and was hoping to find a CCC equivalent, but there doesn't appear to be one.
  1. A differential backup with versioning.
  2. An external, bootable backup that can be used without the application that created it.
  3. The ability to access files on that bootable backup without the application that created it.
  4. The ability to write the contents (including the OS) of this bootable drive to a new drive installed in the computer that will boot and run properly on its own.
  5. No yearly subscriptions.
Macrium reflect free can do most of it.
1 - check,​
2 - check (you use application to create bootable media, backup can be on the same or different media),​
3 - naah - you'll still need the software to access contents of the backup,​
4 - check,​
5 - check (free).​
 

USAFRet

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Macrium does all of that except #3.
It is my tool of choice.

 
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tmpc1066

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Macrium reflect free can do most of it.
1 - check,​
2 - check (you use application to create bootable media, backup can be on the same or different media),​
3 - naah - you'll still need the software to access contents of the backup,​
4 - check,​
5 - check (free).​
Thanks for the reply. Good to know that #2 is possible. I hate proprietary file formats. They always burn you in the end . . . both physically and temporally, but I may have no choice there.
 

USAFRet

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And I've had to actually use my Macrium Reflect backups, after a completely dead drive.

960GB Sandisk SSD. Totally dead.
605GB irreplaceable data on it. Kid pics, etc.

Put in a new drive, click click in Macrium...all 605GB data recovered, exactly as it was at 4AM that morning when it ran its nightly Incremental.
 

tmpc1066

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And I've had to actually use my Macrium Reflect backups, after a completely dead drive.

960GB Sandisk SSD. Totally dead.
605GB irreplaceable data on it. Kid pics, etc.

Put in a new drive, click click in Macrium...all 605GB data recovered, exactly as it was at 4AM that morning when it ran its nightly Incremental.
Good to know. I'm glad it saved your bacon.

Go Air Force!!! ✈
 

tmpc1066

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Macrium reflect free can do most of it.
1 - check,​
2 - check (you use application to create bootable media, backup can be on the same or different media),​
3 - naah - you'll still need the software to access contents of the backup,​
4 - check,​
5 - check (free).​
Two related questions:
  1. To get around #3, do "clones" exist as separate file types, or is a clone created from an image file onto the actual drive you want to use in the computer?
  2. I have two PCs (a laptop and a Surface). What are the rules for backing up two different PCs onto the same backup drive? Do they need to be on separate partitions?
 

USAFRet

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Two related questions:
  1. To get around #3, do "clones" exist as separate file types, or is a clone created from an image file onto the actual drive you want to use in the computer?
  2. I have two PCs (a laptop and a Surface). What are the rules for backing up two different PCs onto the same backup drive? Do they need to be on separate partitions?
A "clone" isn't a file.
It is a full functional copy of the contents of the source drive.


For the 2 systems, that is no problem with Images.
All of my systems, and each drive individually, saves to the same folder tree in my NAS box.


In each of those, there is a subfolder for each individual physical drive.
 

tmpc1066

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A "clone" isn't a file.
It is a full functional copy of the contents of the source drive.


For the 2 systems, that is no problem with Images.
All of my systems, and each drive individually, saves to the same folder tree in my NAS box.


In each of those, there is a subfolder for each individual physical drive.
I see. So with Macrium, there is simply no way to view and retrieve backed up files without their software. How did you get to the backup when your drive died? How did Macrium run?
 

USAFRet

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I see. So with Macrium, there is simply no way to view and retrieve backed up files without their software. How did you get to the backup when your drive died? How did Macrium run?
Right, you need the software.
In my case, it was existing on my system. It was just a secondary drive.

In the case of a dead C drive, you boot up from a Macrium Reflect Rescue USB that you've previously created and stashed away.
Boot from that, point it at the relevant resources, and off you go.
 

tmpc1066

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Right, you need the software.
In my case, it was existing on my system. It was just a secondary drive.

In the case of a dead C drive, you boot up from a Macrium Reflect Rescue USB that you've previously created and stashed away.
Boot from that, point it at the relevant resources, and off you go.
And, what do you do if you don't have that Macrium Rescue Disk?

(I love your "data lives here" pic.)
 

tmpc1066

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Just like doing the backups, part of being prepared.
My Rescue USB is stashed in the bottom of my case.

You can make one from any working PC.
That PC needs Macrium installed on though, right? I ask because I received this reply from Macreum on this very subject: "Yes, our recovery option is specific to Macrium, as it uses a bootable Unix based version of Macrium to recover. The Macrium USB can be used to recover images made with macrium back to their original replacement devices. The Redeploy process is needed to recover to dissimilar hardware. "

I'm not trying to be difficult here, its just that backups are important to me and I don't want to find out later when I have a problem that I didn't really understand what was going on.
 

USAFRet

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Right. You need Macrium installed to create the Rescue, and to create the backup Images.
As I mentioned above, it is my tool of choice for this. It is one of those applications that "just works".
Fine grained scheduling. Individual folder backup if desired. Ability to mount an Image as a drive letter, and extract a single file.

And kudos for being proactive. Far too many aren't.
 

tmpc1066

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Right. You need Macrium installed to create the Rescue, and to create the backup Images.
As I mentioned above, it is my tool of choice for this. It is one of those applications that "just works".
Fine grained scheduling. Individual folder backup if desired. Ability to mount an Image as a drive letter, and extract a single file.
Damn! For me, that's a show stopper. I like things self contained and non-proprietary if possible. Especially things you don't need that often like a special USB flash drive. That's the beauty of Carbon Copy Cloner; you make a backup drive, and that's all you need. You can even make copies of it and they will do the job.

Do you know of a way to make a generic disk image of the Macrium Rescue disk? If I had a way to make one when I needed it, I'd feel better.

Belt, suspenders, AND duct tape. 🤪
 

tmpc1066

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What do you mean by 'generic disk image'?
You mean outside of the Macrium client? I do not believe you can.

It saves the images in its own format. xxx.mrimage.
No, I mean an image of just the USB Rescue Disk so that you could make one on any PC, from that image, without any Macrium software on it. It removes the need to have a special USB Drive stashed away. I referred to this disk image as generic to imply that any PC could put it on a USB stick.
 
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I am a huge advocate of Macrium. I've been using it for 15 years personally and at work in a Windows Server RAID environment. It has never let me down.
 

USAFRet

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No, I mean an image of just the USB Rescue Disk so that you could make one on any PC, from that image, without any Macrium software on it. It removes the need to have a special USB Drive stashed away. I referred to this disk image as generic to imply that any PC could put it on a USB stick.
I suppose you could create one, then make a generic ISO out of it and save that.
 

tmpc1066

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I am a huge advocate of Macrium. I've been using it for 15 years personally and at work in a Windows Server RAID environment. It has never let me down.
That is certainly reassuring, but have you ever had a misplaced or non functional Macrium USB rescue disk? I've been using computers for a lot of years, and although I am no expert, I know they can bone you six ways from Sunday. So, I try to cover any scenarios I can think of such as the rescue disk not working.

As for it never letting you down, be patient . . . it will. :)
 

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