Acronis Back Up. Will it work? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 02-18-2014, 07:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Am running an HTPC (Assasin) with good success. Win7, WMC, SSD and 2 TB Green Drive, Ceton Inf4 Tuner. Does anyone know if I install an Acronis and do a back up if, should I have a drive or board failure if the Acronis will allow a full restore with all software and all recorded programs readable after the restore? If, not what will I likely lose?
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post #2 of 16 Old 02-18-2014, 01:32 PM
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I've heard good things about Acronis, never tried it myself. I have been able to restore an image using the built in Win7 tools, so that's another option for you.
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post #3 of 16 Old 02-18-2014, 02:23 PM
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Yes Acronis will do what you need, make an image backup and it will restore exactly as the drive is. I've done this many times for boot drives etc.
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post #4 of 16 Old 02-18-2014, 02:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sgbroimp View Post

Am running an HTPC (Assasin) with good success. Win7, WMC, SSD and 2 TB Green Drive, Ceton Inf4 Tuner. Does anyone know if I install an Acronis and do a back up if, should I have a drive or board failure if the Acronis will allow a full restore with all software and all recorded programs readable after the restore? If, not what will I likely lose?

Hi, I use Acronis so I'll try to answer your questions as best I can smile.gif

GENERAL INFO:
Acronis can create a backup image of a disk partition (i.e. the system OS on C:) or it can create a backup image of the entire disk (i.e. a Windows 7 install, which creates 2 partitions on the hard disk or solid state drive on which it is installed) + the MBR and Track 0 data of the hard disk drive or solid-state drive.(*NOTE* I have no idea how Acronis will work if it is used to back up a HDD or SSD that is formatted to GPT instead of MBR.) This makes it possible to restore your entire Windows system should something go wrong.

YOUR PARTICULAR USAGE SCENARIO:
In order to save all your data to backup images with Acronis, I think you will need to do 2 separate backup jobs: one for your Win7 installation on your SSD, and one for your recorded WMC program content, which I assume is stored on your 2TB Green HDD. Maybe you can do both jobs in one backup session in Acronis, but I have never needed to back up multiple drives myself, so I don't know how at the moment.

A POTENTIAL PROBLEM FOR YOU:
This is where others will have to chime in, because there may be a problem you will encounter, which is this:
Since you are using a Ceton tuner, I presume you are recording from cable, which is copy protected. If this is the case, then you'll need to find out -- would a restoration of copy protected recordings from a backup be able to be played back in WMC? Content flagged as "copy-once" could be a problem here. I know that the cable company's encryption prevents recorded data from being playable when copied to another HDD, so it seems very very likely that restoring data to a new hard drive from a backup (if the original hard drive died) would be just as futile as copy/pasting the recordings to a different hard drive. Just for the record, I do not have cable so I am just speculating. Can anyone else answer this for the OP?

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post #5 of 16 Old 02-19-2014, 11:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlad Theimpaler View Post

Hi, I use Acronis so I'll try to answer your questions as best I can smile.gif

GENERAL INFO:
Acronis can create a backup image of a disk partition (i.e. the system OS on C:) or it can create a backup image of the entire disk (i.e. a Windows 7 install, which creates 2 partitions on the hard disk or solid state drive on which it is installed) + the MBR and Track 0 data of the hard disk drive or solid-state drive.(*NOTE* I have no idea how Acronis will work if it is used to back up a HDD or SSD that is formatted to GPT instead of MBR.) This makes it possible to restore your entire Windows system should something go wrong.

YOUR PARTICULAR USAGE SCENARIO:
In order to save all your data to backup images with Acronis, I think you will need to do 2 separate backup jobs: one for your Win7 installation on your SSD, and one for your recorded WMC program content, which I assume is stored on your 2TB Green HDD. Maybe you can do both jobs in one backup session in Acronis, but I have never needed to back up multiple drives myself, so I don't know how at the moment.

A POTENTIAL PROBLEM FOR YOU:
This is where others will have to chime in, because there may be a problem you will encounter, which is this:
Since you are using a Ceton tuner, I presume you are recording from cable, which is copy protected. If this is the case, then you'll need to find out -- would a restoration of copy protected recordings from a backup be able to be played back in WMC? Content flagged as "copy-once" could be a problem here. I know that the cable company's encryption prevents recorded data from being playable when copied to another HDD, so it seems very very likely that restoring data to a new hard drive from a backup (if the original hard drive died) would be just as futile as copy/pasting the recordings to a different hard drive. Just for the record, I do not have cable so I am just speculating. Can anyone else answer this for the OP?

Thanks much, Vlad. I think you hit the nail on the head. According to Acronis, the answer is that the file will not know it is on anything except the original computer, but experince of others to prove that would be welcome. I do know that when I blew out the SDD drive 18 months ago, most of the files played on the replacement, SDD but some did not for copy protection reasons, but then in this case it would have been clear to the system that this was not the original OS drive.
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post #6 of 16 Old 02-23-2014, 08:15 AM
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Long time lurker, first time poster.

 

I use Acronis monthly.

 

The method I will describe may not be the easiest way or the best way. But when I am done I have a absolutely clean computer.

I have several hd caddies on my computer. Once a month, usually around the 20th or so I remove my old “slave” hd and slide in my “Master” hd. I download all ms updates. I only have my “must have” programs on this Master hd. As in ms office. Then I clone the “master” hd to one of my “slave “ hds. In 15 minutes or so I have a new clean hd with just my essential programs.

 

I then pull out my master hd and make my slave hd my new operating hd. I then turn off ms updates in the control panel on the cloned drive. No cookies. No registry issues. Clean as a babies butt. If there are programs I want on the newly cloned HD I either copy them from the previous months' clone or download the program from the net.  And if I want to try some new programs to see if I like them or not, I have till next month to decide.

 

Not sure how it would affect your ceton card. Don’t think it would be a problem

 

Now there may be easier/better ways of doing this. I am all ears/eyes. I have a new htpc with a solid state hd and am trying to decide if I am going to use this method.

 

Bttw… Acronis is include with Seagate hds….at least the ones I have.

 

Hope this helps

 

John

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post #7 of 16 Old 02-23-2014, 12:08 PM
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A lot of people have been moving away from Acronis due to various problems with it.

I was having various issues like not being able to browse image files and search for backups.

I've since switched to Macrium Reflect and so far I'm happy.
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post #8 of 16 Old 02-23-2014, 10:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sebberry View Post

A lot of people have been moving away from Acronis due to various problems with it.

I was having various issues like not being able to browse image files and search for backups.

I've since switched to Macrium Reflect and so far I'm happy.

Are using the free or paid version?
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post #9 of 16 Old 02-24-2014, 12:14 PM
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I use NTI Shadow 5 on my Win7 HTPC.

It backs up my data to an external hard drive in the data’s’ native format while keeping track of files that have (or have not) changed. Shadow backups are really just copies of the original data; no software is needed to access or recoup the data. – You end up with what could easily be used as portable version of your data. (You’d probably then want a second backup stored in a safer location.)

While a key feature of Shadow is that it can work in real time to constantly back up data as it changes, it works fine if you just run it whenever you want to update your backup. (That’s what I do.)

It’s quite simple and I think there are some free programs that do pretty much the same thing, but I started with a free version of Shadow and later got a win7 version on sale/with coupon.

It doesn’t encrypt, so you might need something different to back up “sensitive” data. And, it doesn’t compress, but storage space is not the problem it used to be. I don’t know how its “speed” compares to other backup programs. – Features and more info: NTI Shadow 5
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post #10 of 16 Old 02-24-2014, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike99 View Post

Are using the free or paid version?

I've got the paid version.
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post #11 of 16 Old 02-25-2014, 12:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sebberry View Post

I've got the paid version.
Thanks -
Have you tried to make a HDD image with Macrium?
Currently I use Win7 but thought about revamping my approach for images & backups.
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post #12 of 16 Old 02-25-2014, 05:04 AM
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I recently used Paragon Backup and Recovery 2014 Free to migrate a 16GB OS partition from a 320GB notebook drive to a smaller 120GB SSD. It worked flawlessly the first time.

If you are thinking of using the Windows built in backup and restore functions keep in mind that restore only works if the target disk is the same size or larger than the original disk, even though you only want to restore a small partition.

Here's the link to Paragon: http://www.paragon-software.com/home/br-free/download.html
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post #13 of 16 Old 02-25-2014, 09:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike99 View Post

Thanks -
Have you tried to make a HDD image with Macrium?
Currently I use Win7 but thought about revamping my approach for images & backups.

Macrium works by using image backups.

I have mine do an incremental backup each night where it simply adds new or changed files to the image stored on a network drive.

There's also an option in some versions to restore to dissimilar hardware. I haven't tried this feature however.
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post #14 of 16 Old 02-26-2014, 12:39 PM
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I use Easeus Todo to clone my drives

http://www.todo-backup.com/products/home/free-backup-software.htm

It is free for home use and will perform perfect clones.

David
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post #15 of 16 Old 03-01-2014, 10:25 AM
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Macrium free works very well, and is easy to use. I prefer it to Acronis.

I've had some issues with Easeus (changes to the boot partition), which created some incompatibilities with other backup tools, including the one included with Windows 7 pro.

An alternative, with multi pc and server setups is WHS2011 (it is slower, but allows for incremental system backups, and avoids duplication of files when backing up multiple PCs with the same files - handy with OS files, etc.)
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post #16 of 16 Old 03-01-2014, 11:04 AM
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if there is an issue with DRM you do need a true image backup to preserve whatever keys you have.

For backup, I now mostly rely on Windows Home Server which essentially makes image backups of computers on your network, but that is overkill.

For you situation, I vote for Macrium Reflect if you want a good image backup. I swore by Acronis for years but found that when there was a new version of Windows, it took them forever to get things to work right, generally without much info to users on what was happening. This happened in both Win7 and Win8. I finally got fed up and went back to Macrium which I had used in the past. It's pretty bulletproof.

The paid version is worth it. You get Win PE and Linux boot disk creation for disaster recovery and very responsive support.
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