Sunday, June 9, 2013

Windows 7 free backup/restore solutions, still far from the light...

Lately I wrote about my intention to test various free backup/restore solutions for my home computer.
I first shrinked my system partition, then did a backup of it with RedoBackup.
But I hadn't any spare hard drive so I bought a pretty 500 GB 2.5inch SATA on amazon.

I was excited when I received it last friday, and as soon as I had some spare time this week-end I tried to restore the backup image onto it.

Damnation, RedoBackup didn't even try to start the process, complaining about the destination drive being far too small. I couldn't believe it, until I (quickly) found this clear statement in its FAQ :

Q: Can I restore a backup to a smaller drive?

A: No. Doing so likely would require modifying the bootloader, which defeats the simplicity of Redo Backup. Backups must be restored to a drive of equal or greater size.
However, you can always restore to a larger drive, resize the partition, and back up the smaller partition if needed. Partitions can easily be resized using the included partition editor utility (GParted).
As my original drive is 2 TB, there is no surprise my small brand new 500 GB do not fit...

Well, forget about RedoBackup.

I dug a bit further about restoring on a smaller drive, and my first insights were not very promising. It seems that few backup/restore tools can manage such processing, stating that not only the size of the original partition matters, but also the physical location of all its bits on the drive. 

Acronis is claimed to manage this greatly but it costs 50$, so I put it apart for the moment.

Fortunately, Macrium v5 seems to cope with it too, as I read here and there.

Thus I'm gonna delete the image generated by RedoBackup, and build one with Macrium v5 Free.

Stay tuned...

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