Need help understanding system backup vs disk backup

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
OP BigBen08 Veteran Member • Posts: 6,525
Re: Need help understanding system backup vs disk backup

Ho72 wrote:

BigBen08 wrote:

One last question...in what cases would one use System backup? Would that backup the operating system, but nothing else?

This usually depends on how you've arranged things. System backups are useful, especially if you've taken care to separate your personal data (documents, images, downloads, etc) from your system or OS drive/partition. In this case, a system image can be used as an alternative to Windows system restore, which I always disable. System restore may be better than it was in the past, but my personal experience is that it failed when I was the most desperate for it to work.

I make scheduled images of my OS drive, one full image per month followed by weekly differentials. I also invoke manual backup images in certain instances, such as before an OS update or software install. Having your personal data on a separate partition or drive ensures that you can restore your OS without losing something you recently saved to your docs or downloads between backups. Further, this sort of personal data can be backed up by simply copying it to another location without the need for imaging.

Finally, a couple of definitions may be helpful:

Drive Image: A compressed, monolithic file that cannot be restored or read without access to the same software that created it. Used to create bootable backups of an operating system

Drive Clone: An exact duplicate of a disk, file for file. Cloning is useful when upgrading disks or for creating a backup drive for disaster recovery. The files are readable by any computer that recognizes the file system employed, without the need for specialized software.

Thanks for the help. I believe Drive Image is sometimes call a backup image or image file. Slight variations of the same term.

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