How to create a recovery partition like the big IT companies computers have

Hi Just wondering how I can create a recovery partition like branded computers sometimes have.  You know, when hit F11 I want to set one up on my home built computer.  Plz give instructions detailed enough to acheive this aim.  The reader has an intermediate understanding of computers.  
AndreasNHagenAsked:
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debuggerauCommented:
some motherboards come with data recovery built into the BIOS, however, many do not.
Some allow for backup to Raid only, some to external media..
But for an extended partition, you could use any number from a third party diag disk, like the utlimatebootdisk which contains drivers, backup progs and hopefully, everything you might need.

Trouble with these type of restores is that it only installs a vanilla copy of the OS and drivers, it doesn't slipstream new Service packs and patches into it, and it wont contain any of your loved apps.

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uucknaaaCommented:
Hi

I've saved the initial configuration on machines that didn't have a restore by just doing a clone of the hard drive.  There's a number of software applications that will make this "clone" of your machine, in a wide price range.  Norton Ghost from Symantec is one of the better known names.

You'd just make your copy and revert back to it by doing a restore when needed.  You do run into software licensing issues and might find authentication problems if the machine is not exactly the same as the clone.  I've heard that Windows will allow some small amount of hardware changes before asking to authenticate again.
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MariusSunchaserCommented:
Hi there.
For home computer, I will suggest this approach:
Make a small partition (10-15 gigs), install everything on it (OS, AV, all your apps, do all the updates, all your settings), and just back-up this partition on DVDs, or another back-up partition on you hdd.
Norton Ghost and Acronis True Imagine are the most powerful tools around, but you can google around for other products.

For business with a large number of computers, I would suggest installing a RIS server, and image all identical computers.
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veedarCommented:
Clonezilla Live is a great free back up imaging solution see  clonezilla.org

If you want to pay I agree that Acronis True Image is your best bet.

From the last entry in this thread:  http://www.donationcoder.com/Forums/bb/index.php?action=printpage;topic=15843.0

Acronis True Image (http://www.acronis.com/homecomputing/products/trueimage/) will allow you to make a "restore partition" just like the OEM's do, with F11 access at boot time, to restore the image of the OS from a hidden "secure zone" partition, containing the image of the OS, applications, settings, and everything else.

Acronis actually makes the software that some OEM's (http://www.acronis.com/oem/products/pc/) use to create restore partitions on the PC's they sell.
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AndreasNHagenAuthor Commented:
Great answers sorry for the late reply.  Thank you.
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