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A good backup program will back up literally everything if that is what you choose in your backup settings.

I'm using Windows 7, Home Premium and Macrium Reflect. No error messages, just a question. Suppose I had a hard disk error such as the head crashed so that I have to install a new hard drive. Now, I want to restore my backed up system to the new hard drive. Will Macrium Reflect created the partitions for me as part of the restore operation?

In this excerpt from Answercast #41, I look at the way a good backup program handles partitions in creating a system image.

Backing up partitions

The short answer is yes, if you backed up the partitions you want to restore.

When you create your backup, Macrium Reflect shows you a layout of your hard disk and all of the partitions on it. You can choose to back up:

  • Just a single partition,

  • A combination of partitions,

  • Or everything on a specific hard drive.

System Image

I recommend that you back up everything on a particular hard drive. I would refer to that as a system image because it's a complete image of everything on that hard drive.

If that's what you have, as long as that's what you have:

  • As long as that image actually contains the definitions of and the contents of multiple partitions,

  • Then when you go to restore, you'll actually be given the option of restoring everything (all of the partitions that used to be on that hard drive) or to restore individual partitions.

In the case that you're describing, of course, you go directly to "Restore everything"; put it back the way it was; partitions and everything.

That's exactly what Macrium Reflect will do and that's exactly what (to be honest) any good backup program will do. Naturally, I consider Macrium Reflect to be a good backup program.

End of Answercast #41 Back to – Audio Segment

Article C5667 - August 6, 2012 « »

Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

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1 Comment
Scott Currier
August 7, 2012 9:00 AM

I have been using Reflect for a week or two now. Lately I have been doing some "retro computing". I have a couple of old 486-50 notebooks I've been playing with for my amusement. The one I am working on now has Win95. The hard drive pops out of the computer quickly and easily. Before making major changes I pop the drive out, connect it via a USB cable to my main computer and image the drive with Reflect. It's quick and painless. It's saved me a lot of time when Win95 has an issue due to a change or a new computer. I just pop the drive out of the old notebook, connect it via the USB adapter to my main computer and restore the drive from the image. It's quick and painless. The Brits who wrote this program did a good job.

Thanks for the recommendation Leo, Reflect is a keeper.

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