On Saturday, 1 August 2020 09:14:36 UTC+1, Broadback wrote:
What are you trying to do?
Back up your documents? Have an image whereby you can restore everything to a bare disc?
What version of Macrium? It appears to have had quite a few decent reports though I have no personal experience. Could it be that you need an updated version?
You need a late-patched 6.x.x version, or really a 7.x.x
version, to back up a Windows 10 C: drive. It'll throw an
error before the backup is even a bit started, if you don't
have such a version. Macrium is rather conservative that way,
rejecting backup materials if the metadata analysis does
not complete normally at the start.
Using VSS, it can back up C: "hot" , while the OS is running.
But you have to make sure to select all the partitions
that accompany Windows 10, to have a good result later when
restoring to a blank new disk drive. You can't "just" backup
C: and leave the other ones unticked. And it won't warn you
either, that you've done something un-wise. It'll let
you proceed, because it's a power-user tool and takes
There are situations where I only back up C: , because I know
an experiment will run amok and damage the contents on C: .
Because the boot materials seldom change, I can then restore
C: onto the drive and replace the old damaged C: .
But for a lot of other scenarios, you want to backup everything.
At least, until you understand what bits and pieces are "critical".
The built-in backup solves this problem for you:
wbAdmin start backup -backupTarget:E: -allCritical -quiet
The allCritical tells "Windows 7 Backup" (the program), to back up
everything needed to boot C: . The output would be stored on E:\
Restore is available from the installer DVD.
Not that I'm recommending that tool, just demonstrating in
that example, the developer thought about users, and the
user not knowing which ones to grab at backup time.
Acronis had a relatively easy program to use.
I downloaded a trial and tested the interface and
the interface is easier to use than Macrium.
There are *lots* of backup programs. This list isn't
up to date, but it's still a start. Several programs
offer free versions (capable of making Full backups
but you pay money for Incremental capability).
Windows 10 itself has a program called "Windows 7 backup".
It currently stores partitions as .vhdx files. It's
a full backup. If the GUI is not present, you can do a
backup with it like this. The allCritical parameter
specifies that the system and boot partitions be backed up,
the Include option covers any other partitions you might
like. Even though C: is covered twice in this command example,
only one backup of it is made. And restored later. Boot the
installer DVD, to access E: and do a restore.
wbAdmin start backup -backupTarget:E: -include:C:,D:,F: -allCritical -quiet
Output would be in E:\WindowsImageBackup .
I'm not sure I'm following your assertion about Macrium.
Are you saying the backup to the External disk failed in some way ?
Or, that during restoration, things did not turn out in
a "bootable" condition ?
It's possible to be too selective and not back up
enough partitions to make Windows boot later. If your
boot materials are spread over multiple disks, you
might inadvertently lose some when making your Full backup.
The Macrium Rescue CD you used during restore, has a
Boot Repair option in one of the menus. It will
rebuild the BCD. I prefer it slightly, to the repair
capabilities that Windows 10 has during startup
(which don't always work). The repair order is:
1) Install and cable up, only the disk needing repair. Don't
complicate the situation by having too many disks
present, getting the wrong ones scanned and so on.
That way, it might only show one item to select in the
menu in (2), resulting in less hair loss.
2) Boot Macrium Rescue CD, use Boot Repair. Reboot is next.
3) Attempt to boot windows. If Windows 10 won't start,
the Windows Repair will run. If Macrium has had a crack
at it first, the Windows Repair can then finish the job.
Now, if you're saying some partition type has changed,
that seems unlikely.
You can use TestDisk to scan a disk. But I hardly ever
use this for repairing the partition table (in the
MBR or otherwise), because there is too much digital
noise for the scan to correctly rebuild the table.
But, TestDisk can "list" and "copy" files from hidden
partitions. I can use it to find cases where materials
have gone missing.
https://www.cgsecurity.org/wiki/TestDisk # server down at the moment
There is a Windows version, as well as a lot of Linux distros
have TestDisk in their package tree. The Linux versions
will not be dependent on that web server being working,
whereas that's the site you'd use to get the Windows download.
Linux GPARTED is another one that can be used to examine
the partitions. Or gnome-disk (which seems to elevate on its own).
sudo apt install gparted # Install, if missing
sudo gparted # All disks in machine listed, select one
sudo gparted /dev/sda # Select just the first disk for attention
And Gnome-disks (displays partitions like it was Disk Management in Windows)
gnome-disks # full names some distros use
disks # truncated name used by others
apt search disks # if the package is missing, you can search
# Not all distros use "apt". This is just a
# very quick example.
The Windows 10 C:\ can be mounted in Linux, but because of some
custom Reparse points in NTFS, Linux will return "I/O Error" when
it cannot understand some of what it is reading. Many Windows 10
installs use "new style compression" on C:\Windows files, making
them rather inaccessible in Linux. You can use the "compact"
command in Windows 10 to disable this compression, such that
more files will be accessible for alteration in Linux, later.
compact.exe /compactos:never # Improve Linux access, still not perfection though.
If you've given up and flattened the thing, that's
OK too. There isn't a lot of tolerance of failure
Macrium can "mount" .mrimg contents, if you need to
look at the files in there for any reason. Or check to
see what partitions got backed up.
Many thanks for you extensive reply, sadly though a lot of it was over
my head. It was the restore that failed, as it made the disc unusable in
the format required by windows, Luckily I have a son in law who is very
adept at all thing computers, he recovered 90% of my files. I will
peruse the software available in the link you kindly sent. Cheers
Did your son-in-law mount the .mrimg on his Windows technician machine ?
There's a picture here, with the right click menu item "Explore Image".
As that would tell you what was captured in there.
You can use the Version 6 imgtovhd converter, on
Version 7 images (as Version 7 no longer has the imgtovhd
converter). And .vhd format is something that 7ZIP can open
or Windows 10 can mount natively. It doesn't really add any
additional capability as such, just makes your files accessible
to more tools.
Macrium also has a "Verify" command where it verifies the
integrity of the .mrimg file you created. I've had a couple
backups here trashed because the computer had bad RAM sticks
in it, and the Verify happened to catch that and give me a hint
about it. I was just screwing around at the time, and decided to
run a Verify for fun, and the damn thing failed on me. And
that got me awake in a hurry. Then I had to test a bunch to
see how many were ruined. And only two of the files were fried.
(The bad RAM corrupts the write operation, during backup...)
Running the Verify would be my first step. It's what you do
when you're new to the product, and want to make sure
things are working. You can do Verify from the Macrium you've
installed in Windows, or you can do the Verify using the
Macrium Rescue CD and boot up the computer with that to get
It's pretty hard to lose materials with that product.
I don't think it has file-by-file isolation internally,
unlike some backup methods do. With some products, you
can lose one file, and get to keep the rest, when there
is a single error. Macrium is all-or-nothing, with
opportunities of various sorts to avoid a disaster.
And the people who wrote that software, know their
stuff. I suspect they've had some staff changes since
the founders wrote it. I can be reasonably certain that
they put things back as they found them.
The backup has the usual limitations. It can't back up
pagefile.sys, because that's "busy". Nobody cares about that.
It can't back up Windows.edb (Windows Search index file).
Nobody cares about that either :-) But otherwise, it does
a damn fine job (for free).
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