Solved

images and partition on Windows 8.1

Posted on 2014-07-21
19
581 Views
Last Modified: 2014-08-08
Before UEFI, I was quite comfortable with creating new partition(s) (up to 4) on Windows systems.    Now with UEFI, I'm uncertain about what I can or should not do regarding partitions.  I've done some research on this but it is unclear to me.   I have a new Lenovo that already has 5 partitions on the HDD created by the manufacturer.  It is 1 TB drive and I would like to reduce the primary partition to approx. 800 GB and add a new partition of around 100 GB to store a system image.  Here are my specific questions:
1.  Should I use the partition manager within W 8.1 to reduce the size of a partition and add a new one?
2.  Will I be able to access the image partition should the primary partition become corrupted (meaning unbootable) with some sort of app on a flash drive or CD?  If so, what would I use?  Can I use the System Restore Disk CD to do this?
3. Is there a free imaging program that the "experts" use?  If so, what is it?  

Thanks for your help on this.
0
Comment
Question by:tonyadam
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • +3
19 Comments
 
LVL 3

Assisted Solution

by:Mitchell Milligan
Mitchell Milligan earned 100 total points
ID: 40210071
Imaging with Windows 8 can be tricky.  Most experts user the Windows Deployment Tools, and imagex or dism to deploy and capture images.  As far as the partitioning and other information, I have found this guide very useful: http://tomasdeceuninck.wordpress.com/2014/01/27/windows-create-and-apply-a-windows-8-1-deployment-image/
0
 
LVL 34

Expert Comment

by:Michael-Best
ID: 40210085
Do not store the image on the same physical disk as the OS – If the hard disk ever fails, you’ll lose both your OS and the backup.

System image is supported on internal\external disks, optical removable media, and network locations (Business edition or above).
0
 
LVL 90

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40210096
Another (and very different approach) is to have one partition (I do this) and (as per the above post) I use a 1Tb external USB hard drive to store images.

Then to the extent I need another machine (I have a half dozen or more here), I use VMware Workstation. That allows me to run systems simultaneously which I value.
0
 
LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:Mitchell Milligan
ID: 40210115
Michael, regular backups should be taken regardless, and so if the image is stored on the same drive, there is no harm in that, as long as regular backups are taken.  And like John was saying, if you have access to a Windows 8 or 8.1 pc, you can run hyper-v which is the free Microsoft version of a hyper-visor that is directly competitive to VMware Workstation but free and can be enabled in any PC running Windows 8.
0
 

Author Comment

by:tonyadam
ID: 40210152
I'm fully aware of the risks of a single HDD for the image and live data.  I usually use some cloud service for data backup so losing the HDD is not an issue.  What I've seen much more often than losing the HDD is that the OS gets corrupted....bad update, virus, user screw up etc. etc.  Worse case, if I were using a cloud backup, I could place the image into the cloud as well.  Yes, I do know that some services will not do this and that it chews up a lot of storage.  OK...having said all of this, I'm not sure my questions have been answered.  If I were to resize the primary partition and create a new one under UEFI, what do I use to create the image?  Once it is created, how would I get access to it?  It is hard enough to find the W8.1 image program but will it create the image on the same HDD?  If not, then is there a free W8.1 app that will do this?  Should I just invest in a 32GB flash drive and use it?  Unfortunately, it might be large enough for a W8.1 system using the integrated program with W8.1.
0
 
LVL 90

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40210167
I got a set of Recovery DVD's for my Windows 8.1 system with UEFI bios replacement and they do work.  

If you want the SSD main drive for your purposes, get a 100Gb drive. My Vista, and Seven machines are about 50Gb each.

You can have a regular hard drive for additional use and partition it as you wish.
0
 
LVL 3

Expert Comment

by:Mitchell Milligan
ID: 40210206
Did you read through the link I posted?  That literally gives you the scripts for formatting the partitions, and the tools to install the image.  I recommend taking a second look at that, there is some great stuff in there.
0
 
LVL 90

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40210356
My suggestion if you wish to partition the main drive would be to partition first and install the operating system second.

I believe the SSD main and Hard large secondary drive to be your best option.
0
 

Author Comment

by:tonyadam
ID: 40210599
Mitchell, I agree with the link you posted and your comments.  However, it is much too complex for me.  However, I might give it whirl sometime. I know MS is trying to make W8.1 much more difficult for the bad guys to mess it up but it has also made it much more difficult for some of us just trying to help out the "mom and pops" who want a system that can be easily recovered.  Thanks for the posting.
0
Too many email signature changes to deal with?

Are you constantly being asked to update your organization's email signatures? Do they take up too much of your time? Wouldn't you love to be able to manage all signatures from one central location, easily design them and deploy them quickly to users. Well, you can!

 

Author Comment

by:tonyadam
ID: 40210608
Thanks for your comment John but retail desktop systems and most laptops do not come with SSDs.  When I build my own desktops, I do use an SSD as the main.  Therefore, your comment about partitioning and then installing the OS just doesn't work on a retail system....or at least that is the way I see it.
0
 
LVL 91

Assisted Solution

by:nobus
nobus earned 100 total points
ID: 40210872
i use the free Paragon B&R for imaging tasks  : http://www.paragon-software.com/home/br-free/download.html
for normal backups Syncback :  http://www.2brightsparks.com/syncback/syncback-hub.html
0
 
LVL 90

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 40211270
Thanks for your comment John but retail desktop systems and most laptops do not come with SSDs.  <--- True, some do not, but some do and you had raised the point, so I thought I would expand.
0
 
LVL 70

Accepted Solution

by:
garycase earned 300 total points
ID: 40215137
Imaging can indeed be problematic on UEFI systems ... but I believe Lenovo's "Rescue" software makes this pretty simple.

I don't have a Lenovo here to look at, but I've set a few up, and if I recall correctly, you can easily image the current OS partition to a partition of your choice (or an external drive) ... and.    So, in your specific case, all you'd need to do is shrink the OS partition;  create another one after it (to hold the image);  and then use the Lenovo Rescue utility to image the OS to that partition.

Keeping an image on a different partition on the same drive clearly provides protection against OS corruption -- which is the most likely reason you'd need to restore it, and it's VERY convenient to have it so readily available -- but I agree you should also do periodic images to an external device (or the cloud).    As long as you're doing regular backups of your data, the image of the OS partition doesn't need to be updated very frequently (basically a couple times a year is fine, unless you make a lot of changes to your configuration).
0
 
LVL 34

Expert Comment

by:Michael-Best
ID: 40221901
"the OS gets corrupted....bad update, virus, user screw up etc. etc. "

"just trying to help out the "mom and pops" who want a system that can be easily recovered"

The easy way would be to use recovery discs.
0
 
LVL 70

Expert Comment

by:garycase
ID: 40221914
"... The easy way would be to use recovery discs. " ==>  I don't agree.   The problem with recovery disks is you're restoring the system to it's new, from-the-factory condition.

... won't have any updates; won't have the programs the user has installed;  won't have the user's data;  won't be configured the way the user likes (desktop "tweaks", shortcuts, etc.)

Whereas an Image will restore it to the exact state it was in when the image was made.
0
 

Author Closing Comment

by:tonyadam
ID: 40248508
Thanks to all that responded.  I did not realize that Lenovo has an option to create an image and plan to go that route for both an internal and external image.  I'll use a cloud service for data backup.  However, for the future, I will again look at the information posted in Michael Mitchell's post and thank nobus for her reference for a free imaging tool.
0
 
LVL 91

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 40248897
"make that "his" reference plse!
0
 

Author Comment

by:tonyadam
ID: 40249886
Oops!  My apologies.  I thank nobus for his reference to a free imaging tool.
0
 
LVL 91

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 40250294
great - i feel "me "again !
0

Featured Post

Comprehensive Backup Solutions for Microsoft

Acronis protects the complete Microsoft technology stack: Windows Server, Windows PC, laptop and Surface data; Microsoft business applications; Microsoft Hyper-V; Azure VMs; Microsoft Windows Server 2016; Microsoft Exchange 2016 and SQL Server 2016.

Join & Write a Comment

OfficeMate Freezes on login or does not load after login credentials are input.
If you need to start windows update installation remotely or as a scheduled task you will find this very helpful.
The viewer will learn how to successfully create a multiboot device using the SARDU utility on Windows 7. Start the SARDU utility: Change the image directory to wherever you store your ISOs, this will prevent you from having 2 copies of an ISO wit…
The viewer will learn how to successfully download and install the SARDU utility on Windows 8, without downloading adware.

747 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question

Need Help in Real-Time?

Connect with top rated Experts

12 Experts available now in Live!

Get 1:1 Help Now