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Steven VonaFlag for United States of America asked on

Simple solution for disk imaging/cloning of multiple operating systems

I am looking for a product (preferably free/open source) that I can boot a machine from and create a disk image to a network drive.  I have multiple operating systems so it should would with Windows XP, Vista, 7 and Linux.  

I do not want to clone one OS to multiple machines.  I want to make an image of the current system for disaster recovery.

I would like to hear what everyone has in mind.

Disaster RecoveryOperating SystemsAcronis

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8/22/2022 - Mon

It's not free, but you could try Acronis True Image.

I have done lots of backups and recoveries and never had any problems. You can do recoveries over the network and from boot-cd. You can recover from USB-drives and over the network.

Steven Vona

@nebb-tgr - Can I use Acronis with linux?  Again, I want to be able to boot from a CD and then image the system drive and send it to a network device.

@DigitalTechy - Thanks but I want some personal experiences, etc...  Have you used any of these?

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William Peck

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Steven Vona


I noticed there are several version of Acronis, which are we talking about here?

It says on their website that they also have products for Linux.

I might have missed you question a bit. But you can also boot from the bootable CD and make a backup to a network path.

The bootable CD is some kind of linux distro that enables networking and the other needed drivers so that you can make a backup to a network path, removable media or hard-drive.

We use "Backup and Recovery" on our systems.
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Steven Vona

OK, so one more question... If I splurge and but the business version.

Can I manage them all from my one machine?  I have 14 computers around the office and it would be awesome if I do not have to go to each one (as I have been doing).  Can I kick off a full disk backup/clone from my server?

First of all, I wouldn't recommend buying the full version right away. You should try to get a evaluation version and try it with the different operating systems to make sure of compatibility. Since you are looking for backup, you know how important it is to test the system before buying it.

With Acronis you can manage all backups from one machine. You have to do a full backup the first time, after that you can do incremental backups(less time and bandwidth consuming). You can also schedule the backups so that they happen at a specific time. The only thing that I would be very careful with is using the machines while the backuptask is being performed.

As I said earlier, test the software before you buy it. It would be very sad to discover that you can't use the product after you have spent that kind of money on it.

You can do it with Boot CD for Paragon Drive Backup 10 www.drive-backup.com
And if you get a tech license then you can use it on as many machines as you want.
But what you say is hard to do as you want simple, cheap but functional tool.
You will need either to go to each machine and do the backup manually or run backup tool from Windows (linux should be imaged from boot CD in any case).
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William Peck

I will just throw this on the pile, but Clonezilla (while not a fancy GUI) is quite a nice "cloner". Free also.