PING ANNA: Cloning/Imaging using Norton Ghost 14 or Acronis


R

Randy Loafer

Anna,

Have you recently prepared comprehensive NOTES to image a PC using either
Norton Ghost 14 or Acronis (latest version)?

I am buying a new PC and I want to image it quickly even before I have
started with it so that all the factory settings are still there.

I have got Norton Ghost 14 and I can buy Acronis if that is the only one you
have used.

I can boot the system from Norton Ghost CD but I don’t know how to image the
system. Presumably, one external USB HD would be required to copy the image
files? Any recommendations on this?

I look forward to hearing from you.
 
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J

JS

You don't need the Ghost CD to create an Image Backup
Both Ghost and Acronis will allow you to backup your
drive or partition from Windows. You need to install the
product first and then create an image backup to another
partition or hard drive.

No need to immediately buy Acronis as you can
download the Acronis trial version and create a Rescue CD.

The real test is using the Ghost "Recovery CD" and also
the Acronis "Rescue CD" to see which is easier to
use and more fool proof when recovering you Windows
environment.

I would suggest creating Image Backups using both
Ghost and Acronis before you attempt a recovery.
This way if one fails (and Acronis did on me just a few
days ago and Tech support was very helpful but in the
end the recovery process did not work) you still have
the other backup as a safety net.
 
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A

Anna

Randy Loafer said:
Anna,

Have you recently prepared comprehensive NOTES to image a PC using either
Norton Ghost 14 or Acronis (latest version)?

I am buying a new PC and I want to image it quickly even before I have
started with it so that all the factory settings are still there.

I have got Norton Ghost 14 and I can buy Acronis if that is the only one
you
have used.

I can boot the system from Norton Ghost CD but I don't know how to image
the
system. Presumably, one external USB HD would be required to copy the
image
files? Any recommendations on this?

I look forward to hearing from you.


Randy:
I haven't worked with Symantec's Norton Ghost extensively since Ghost 2003
days. We were very unimpressed with the Ghost versions beginning with
version 9 and continuing through the present version that we just gave up on
that program. But a number of Ghost 14 users have told me that in general
they're satisfied with that program. In any event I'm afraid I can't help
you there re step-by-step instructions for the present Norton Ghost program.

As for step-by-step instructions for the Acronis True Image disk-imaging
program ...I do have them covering the ATI version 11 program (as well as
for some previous versions) but not the present ATI 2009 version. I was
working on instructions for the current ATI program in response to a request
I rec'd from a local computer club, but I'm afraid I haven't finished them.
I hope to have them finished in the not-too-distant future. But I can't
really say when.

While I don't think the basics of the Acronis disk-imaging process have
changed too dramatically between the present and past versions of the
program, I'm not absolutely certain about that since I've had only limited
experience with the latest ATI 2009 version. It seemed to me from some
cursory experience with that latest version that whatever changes was made
re the disk-imaging process had to do more with cosmetics then substance.
But again, I'm not entirely certain of that. So if you think the ATI v11
step-by-step instructions re the program's disk-imaging process would be of
any use or value to you I'll be glad to post them.

As you may know from my previous posts on the subject of establishing &
maintaining a comprehensive backup system, I'm a strong proponent of using
the Casper 5 program for this purpose. We use that program nearly
exclusively nowadays. So my experience with the Acronis program has been
quite limited in recent years.

Casper 5 is a disk-cloning type of program; it does not have disk-imaging
capability. By & large we have found the program to be superb as a
comprehensive backup program for most PC users, and as such (in our view) is
quite superior to the Acronis & other disk-cloning/disk-imaging programs we
have worked with. The program is extremely simple to use even for an
inexperienced user, reasonably quick in operation, and quite effective.
There's virtually no learning curve in undertaking the disk cloning process
as one navigates through the few easy-to-understand screens with a final
mouse-click on the button on the screen which will trigger the disk-cloning
process. After undertaking one or two disk-cloning operations it should take
the user no more than 15 - 20 seconds or so to get to that point.

But the truly significant advantage of the Casper 5.0 disk-cloning program
is its ability to create *incremental* disk clones following the creation of
the original (first) disk clone. Employing what Casper calls its
"SmartClone" technology the program can create subsequent disk clones of the
source HDD usually at a fraction of the time it takes to create a "full"
disk clone. This results in a decided incentive for the user to undertake
frequent complete backups of his or her system, knowing that they can create
"incremental" disk clones in a relatively short period of
time. Understand that this "incremental disk clone" is a *complete* clone
(copy) of the "source" HDD. It is *not* an incremental file. The resultant
"incremental" clone is a precise copy of the user's source HDD.

We're aware of a sizable number of Casper 5 users, a number of whom have
switched from the Acronis and other disk-cloning/disk-imaging programs. I'm
hard-pressed to think of a single such user who regretted his/her purchase
of the Casper 5 program and/or switched back to their former disk-cloning or
disk-imaging program.

There is, however, one area where the Casper 5 program may not be suitable
for a PC user. If the user has a strong or vital interest in maintaining
"generational" (multiple) copies of his or her system at particular points
in time, then generally speaking a disk-imaging program (in most cases)
would be more suitable to that objective. While the Casper 5 (or probably
most other disk-cloning programs) could maintain such generational copies of
one's
system - depending upon the size of the contents of the source drive and the
disk space available on the destination drive and the number of needed
generational copies - it doesn't lend itself as readily to that objective as
would a disk-imaging program.

Since you already have the Norton Ghost & Acronis True Image programs I
would guess you would be reluctant to purchase a third similar type of
program so I have mixed feelings about recommending the Casper 5 program to
you. Be that as it may, there is a trial version (somewhat crippled) of the
program available at...
http://www.fssdev.com
so you might want to give it a try since no expenditure on your part will be
necessary.
Anna
 

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