Jump to content











Photo
- - - - -

User profile backup in Windows 7


  • Please log in to reply
9 replies to this topic

#1 Vortex

Vortex

    Frequent Member

  • Advanced user
  • 239 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 09:56 AM

imagex.exe seems to backup successfully Windows 7 user profiles. This command-line tool is very good for file-level backups. Has anyone tried to backup a Windows 7 profile with another file-level tool?

imagex.exe's other advantages are that it can backup NTFS information , file dates ( creation, modification, and access ) and attributes.

#2 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 16 September 2011 - 02:29 PM

A couple of useful and very convenient for newbies GUI incarnations for MS OS WIM image manipulation, backup, migration and deployment tools ImageX and DISM :

GImageX - clickable access to most ImageX functionality, not sure about access to folder backups though

DISM GUI - access to limited DISM functionality so far, being fast developed

Acronis Backup & Recovery (its not free) makes very efficient speed & space wise backups & restores of just about anything to anywhere, with Advanced Virtual package versions able to work also with several virtual formats in both directions.

#3 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 15464 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 16 September 2011 - 03:46 PM

imagex.exe seems to backup successfully Windows 7 user profiles. This command-line tool is very good for file-level backups. Has anyone tried to backup a Windows 7 profile with another file-level tool?

imagex.exe's other advantages are that it can backup NTFS information , file dates ( creation, modification, and access ) and attributes.

Advantage over WHAT?

I cannot see how/why ImageX in particular (which BTW is NOT licensed to do backups :w00t:):
http://www.msfn.org/...up/page__st__36

ImageX.exe, Wimgapi.dll, Wimfilter and Package Manager. You may install and use the ImageX.exe, Wimgapi.dll and Wimfilter and Package Manager portions of the software for recovering Windows operating system software. For the avoidance of doubt, you may not use these portions of the software for any other purpose, including without limitation for purposes of backing up your Windows operating system.


should be used instead of robocopy or strarc (which are actually file based).

Or am I missing something? :unsure:


:cheers:
Wonko

#4 Vortex

Vortex

    Frequent Member

  • Advanced user
  • 239 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 05:33 PM

Hi Wonko,

What is the difference between using the tool for backing up files and using it for recovering the system? To recover a system, you need a backup created with imagex.exe If there is no backup that means no any option for recovery.

#5 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 16 September 2011 - 05:56 PM

ImageX advantage over Robocopy seems to be in avoiding duplicate file backup onto a backup.wim plus the image compression, thus making smaller backup size.

ImageX is distributed as WAIK component, and instructed to be used in every relevant MS Guide to make a copy of an existing system for the purpose of making migration, service or deployment OS image. If the above text was in fact quoted from any particular document, it might have an implied intent to avoid possible Unfair Competition suites for distributing free system backup software by a recognized OS monopolist. Btw, I didn't notice any size or time advantages of using ImageX for system backup or restore versus Acronis - a faster backup & restore method in my tests.

#6 Wonko the Sane

Wonko the Sane

    The Finder

  • Advanced user
  • 15464 posts
  • Location:The Outside of the Asylum (gate is closed)
  •  
    Italy

Posted 16 September 2011 - 06:06 PM

Hi Wonko,

In terms of using imagex.exe, what is the difference between backing up files and using it for recovering the system? To recover a system, you need a backup created with imagex.exe If there is no backup that means no any option for recovery.


That's what is *absurd* in the WAIK license.
I presume that the idea of the MS guys is to ONLY use the mentioned files to deploy and install.

Of course noone (exception made for me and a very few peeps around has ever read the license, let alone respect this particular clause).
If you follow a few posts on the original 911CD thread, starting from here:
you will also get to the KB that expplains something:
http://support.micro...kb/935467/en-us

But this was a digression :ph34r:, I was only curious HOW exactly you use ImageX to capture profiles and why you don't use one of the mentioned tools (command line), like (example):
http://www.techrepub...-windows-7/3280
http://morgansimonse...using-robocopy/
http://answers.micro...57-aa8843fe01b0

or re-enable the grayed out copy profile or use a specific tool, like Datagrab:
http://maketecheasie...ws-7/2011/06/11
https://sites.google...ojects/datagrab

:cheers:
Wonko

P.S.:

If the above text was in fact quoted from any particular document, it might have an implied intent to avoid possible Unfair Competition suites for distributing free system backup software by a recognized OS monopolist.

If you had actually READ, you would have seen that it is an excerpt from the actual WAIK license (you know the thing that noone reads nor comply with ;)) for which not only a link, but also a method to get one without downloading the whole WAIK and a downloadable copy is given.

#7 Vortex

Vortex

    Frequent Member

  • Advanced user
  • 239 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 06:20 PM

Hi Wonko,

First of all, thanks for the links. I will read them.

imagex is very easy to use in a PE 1 \ 2 \ 3 environment and it can backup junction points without specifying extra command-line arguments. To backup a Windows 7 profile :

imagex.exe /capture C:\Users\Vortex /compress maximum E:\Profile.wim "profile" /check

You are right. The license text has unclear statements.

#8 Vortex

Vortex

    Frequent Member

  • Advanced user
  • 239 posts

Posted 16 September 2011 - 06:23 PM

Hi sambul61,

imagex.exe is a file-level backup tool while Acronis is sector based tool if I am not wrong. A file-level tool creates smaller images compared to a sector based backup tool. Does Acronis provide a file-level backup option? Did you have an opportunity to compare a file-level backup made with imagex and Acronis?

#9 sambul61

sambul61

    Gold Member

  • Advanced user
  • 1568 posts
  •  
    American Samoa

Posted 16 September 2011 - 09:06 PM

Yes, you can backup folders and their content with Acronis. I didn't do a detail speed comparison, but overall a system backup by Acronis was made faster. Not to mention broader backup & restore functionality of the Advanced Virtual version, while ImageX concentrates on other things important in context of its Windows service and migration tasks. What also might have affected the outcome is where the backup was been saved: on the same (slower) or different (faster) HD.

#10 Comander77

Comander77
  • Members
  • 1 posts

Posted 27 September 2011 - 06:30 AM

I use the tool Fabs autobackup http://www.fpnet.fr/
It 's run in PE and in Windows 7/Vista/Xp and make a backup of the User Settings




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users