Make an image of the C drive

in Techie Stuff
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bod1467bod1467 PPR
15.2K Posts
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In preparation for Windows 10 update I plan to make an image of my current C drive. (Presently is 322GB including all the Photos, Videos, MP3s and Ebooks - although I also have these backed up separately along with my other data).

What utilities do folks recommend for making the image? (Preferably free). I have a 1TB USB HDD I can use for storing the image.

Replies

  • bsodbsod Forumite
    1.2K Posts
    Don't you dare criticise what you cannot understand
  • bod1467bod1467 PPR
    15.2K Posts
    Forumite
    http://www.macrium.com/reflectfree.aspx

    Thanks! That's what I was thinking of but couldn't remember the name. :)
  • bsodbsod Forumite
    1.2K Posts
    if you have an empty 1tb drive, you could use windows image too, just in case.
    Don't you dare criticise what you cannot understand
  • JivesingerJivesinger Forumite
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    Ninth Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Another vote for Macrium here. I'm going to do exactly the same before attempting the upgrade to Windows 10.

    The key ;) thing here is that you don't enter a Windows 10 product key with the free upgrade. Instead it somehow inherits activated status from the copy of windows 7 or 8.x that you have running. So if something goes wrong and you need to have another go, you want to go back to a working version of 7 or 8 to get the free upgrade.

    You were probably going to do this anyway, but just to note that I would recommend making an image of the whole disk (ie what shows up as your C: Drive plus System Reserved Partition plus Recovery etc.) That way it will be easier to get back if something goes wrong with Windows 10. If you just had the C: drive on its own, it wouldn't be quite so easy to restore.

    Edit: Also make sure you create the bootable Macrium Rescue Media before you try the upgrade.
  • esuhlesuhl Forumite
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    Jivesinger wrote: »
    The key ;) thing here is that you don't enter a Windows 10 product key with the free upgrade. Instead it somehow inherits activated status from the copy of windows 7 or 8.x that you have running. So if something goes wrong and you need to have another go, you want to go back to a working version of 7 or 8 to get the free upgrade.

    From what I read, you're right about the first in-place update being required to inherit the Win7/8.x license. But once you've upgraded once (I thought) you could then use your Win7/8.x product key.
  • prowlaprowla Forumite
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    I've used Macrium before, and it's done precisely what it says on the tin.
  • JivesingerJivesinger Forumite
    1.2K Posts
    Ninth Anniversary Combo Breaker
    esuhl wrote: »
    From what I read, you're right about the first in-place update being required to inherit the Win7/8.x license. But once you've upgraded once (I thought) you could then use your Win7/8.x product key.
    I don't think Windows 10 will ever accept a Win7/8.x key.

    My understanding of the 'once you've upgraded once' mechanism is that once you've upgraded and activated once, the activation servers store information about your machine's hardware. Then, when you clean-install Windows 10 on some future date and it tries to activate, the activation servers recognise the hardware as a machine they've activated before, and activate again.

    However if your initial upgrade goes pear-shaped before the point of activation, but also messes up your Windows 7/8.x install, I think you need to get Windows 7/8.x running again before you attempt another upgrade.

    I think the OP is definitely doing the right thing by making a backup image before attempting the upgrade.
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