Wrestling With Windows 8 Imaging

18 Nov 2012
November 18, 2012

The leap to Windows 8 has gone well. A full week of work later and I see no reason to not commit. Only issue that I’ve noticed is that I seem to get “IO bound” when there’s a lot of disk activity. Since I have Win8 installed in a VHD I figure that might be causing some extra overhead. So, next step is to eliminate that VHD and get to the disk drive directly.

I initially figured I’d use my old friend the Windows System Image, created by going to the Control Panel, searching on “Windows 7 File Recovery” and taking the option to create a system image. Creating that image went fine, and creating the Win8 Recovery DVD went fine. However, when I boot into the recovery environment and take the options to restore the image it is never found! No matter what I try I end up with ye olde “Windows cannot find a system image on this computer.”

I can browse to the USB drive and find it myself but the recovery program refuses to see it (in both win7 and win8 recovery mode). Tried all the usual tricks (make sure USB is “basic” disk, fresh format USB and the only use was to catch the image, etc.) but after hours of experimentation still no love.

Trying out Acronis True Image as I write this post. Image creation is a little slow but if this works I’ll probably break down and buy it (I’m using their free 30 day trial at the moment). I’m baffled as to why the Windows tools aren’t working here but I’ve wasted too much time. True Image seems to be what is most often suggested so that’s where I’ll start.

My goal is to make images of the Win8 partition (currently stored in the .VHD file) and some of the HP recovery partitions and then wipe the drive and restore those images. That way what was in the VHD will be directly on the disk.

That’s the goal at any rate.

[Updated a few hours later]

Acronis True Image has locked up my machine 3 times in a row. About 45 minutes into a backup attempt it just seizes up and kills the laptop.

Rats. Perhaps it isn’t ready for Windows 8?

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