1

I have been using Ghost32 for years now but for some reason it does not work for my current PC now. So I tried Clonezilla it works pretty good but the problem is it creates a file and attempting to open this file or move it destroys the image. Ghost32 didn't have this problem since it gave you solid .gho files. Is there any other program I can use that gives you .gho files?

I am gonna install Linux so I am backing up my Windows. The application must run on a bootable DVD/CD so I can go back to windows if i mess up my Linux or get bored of it.

  • 1
    "attempting to open this file or move it destroys the image" - That's not correct - honestly I can't even make sense out of it. What EXACTLY are you doing? The only thing you "open" the image file with is Clonezilla, when you want to restore it. It isn't destroyed in the process. And you can move it like any other file. This is a perfectly suitable for the task. I also rather like fsarchiver, but I don't know if it can archive NTFS filesystems. That, you'll have to check. I use it to archive a linux system in the background while using another linux system on the same machine frequently. – Lew Rockwell Fan Jul 11 '17 at 9:00
  • @Jan Doggen You are correct. I fixed it. – Lew Rockwell Fan Jul 11 '17 at 9:07
  • 1
    I use drbl/clonezilla all the time, and moving the image has never caused corruption for me. You need to move the whole folder, as it creates a subfolder based on the image name. – cybernard Jul 15 '17 at 2:22
4

I'd give System Rescue a try – comes in handy for many other tasks, too:

  • bootable from DVD/CD: Yes, it's a LiveCD
  • Disk imaging: It ships with a bunch of tools for that. For your issue, it would be partimage and ddrescue – so 2 tools to chose from for the task.

I've used partimage in the past. It can even store the image files on a remote machine (via network), or you can use eg. an USB drive attached; of course it restore from both locations.

For visuals:

Partition Image
partimage (source: System Rescue; click image to enlarge)

Note: partimage runs per partition, not per disk. But AFAIK ddrescue can be set for the entire disk – and is, as pointed out above, also part of System Rescue.

2

When it comes to Windows, dd and other 3rd party tools are not an efficient way to image a partition.

  • Windows has always natively supported imaging of partitions or individual directories..
    • The system partition can only be imaged from WinPE/WinRE, while all other partitions are able to be imaged while booted to Windows.
    • WIMs (Windows IMage) can be captured of an entire partition or individual folders/files.
      Create a WimScript.ini config file to specify exclusions or exceptions.

  • All WinPE/WinRE WIMs have either ImageX or DISM included within them.

    • WinPE: Windows Preinstallation Environment

      • Such as a Windows Setup boot media (SHIFT + F10 to access terminal)
    • WinRE: Windows Recovery Environment


Commands

WinPE only has 32MB of scratch [temp] space by default, so /ScratchDir is required

  • Windows >=8: DISM is utilized to capture an image:

    DISM /Capture-Image /ImageFile:"Z:\Base.wim" /CaptureDir:"C:" /Name:"Windows Backup" /Description:"Base Image 2019.08.24 @ 08:30" /Compress:Max /CheckIntegrity /Verify /NoRpFix /ScratchDir:"Z:\"
    
  • Windows <=7: ImageX is utilized in lieu of DISM:

    ImageX /Capture "C:" "Z:\Base.esd" "Windows Backup" "Base Image 2019.08.24 @ 08:30" /Compress:Recovery /Check /Verify /NoRpFix /ScratchDir:"Z:\"
    



NOTE:

  • It's impossible for an ESD/WIM image to become corrupted
    • Provided imaging commands are always issued with:
      • DISM: /CheckIntegrity & /Verify
      • ImageX: /Check & /Verify

  • ESDs can only be taken of a system partition
    • /Compress:Recovery is the only compression algorithm available.
      • ESD compression ratio is ~33% more efficient than the WIM compression ratio.
      • In Windows 10, Microsoft only allows ESDs for Push-Button Reset exported images

  • ESDs/WIMs are smart compression image formats
    • Only changed files are added to an image when a new image is appended to it
      • Newly appended images utilize the same copy of unchanged files already contained within the image from the previous image(s).
        • This allows for an image to remain small in relation to the data contained within.



DISM & ImageX Prerequisites


Example: /Get-WIMinfo || /Info

PS $  ls -file

  Directory: Z:\WIM

    Mode                LastWriteTime            Length  Name
    ----                -------------            ------  ----
    -a----        2018.12.24 03:34:13   95,019,530,773B  Base.wim
    -a----        2016.06.14 22:32:36              568B  DISM.cmd
    -a----        2016.05.17 05:36:10               97B  wimscript.ini

PS $  dism /get-wiminfo /wimfile:Base.wim

  Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
  Version: 10.0.18362.1

    Details for image : Base.wim

    Index : 1
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Base (Drivers Only)
      Size : 22,710,283,446 bytes

    Index : 2
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Installed (No Customizations)
      Size : 45,591,850,754 bytes

    Index : 3
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Installed (Customized)
      Size : 94,958,267,312 bytes

    Index : 4
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Group 1 Installed (Customized)
      Size : 101,588,267,910 bytes

    Index : 5
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Group 2 Installed (Customized)
      Size : 101,905,314,237 bytes

    Index : 6
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1809: Updated Applications
      Size : 114,959,954,040 bytes

  The operation completed successfully.
PS $  dism /get-wiminfo /wimfile:Base.wim /index:1

  Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
  Version: 10.0.18362.1

    Details for image : Base.wim

      Index : 1
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Base (Drivers Only)
      Size : 22,710,283,446 bytes
      WIM Bootable : No
      Architecture : x64
      Hal : acpiapic
      Version : 10.0.17134
      ServicePack Build : 1
      ServicePack Level : 1
      Edition : Professional
      Installation : Client
      ProductType : WinNT
      ProductSuite : Terminal Server
      System Root : WINDOWS
      Directories : 24288
      Files : 112665
      Created : 2018.05.05 - 13:56:47
      Modified : 2018.05.05 - 13:56:47
      Languages :
              en-US (Default)

  The operation completed successfully.


PS $  dism /get-wiminfo /wimfile:Base.wim /index:2

  Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
  Version: 10.0.18362.1

    Details for image : Base.wim

      Index : 2
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Installed (No Customizations)
      Size : 45,591,850,754 bytes
      WIM Bootable : No
      Architecture : x64
      Hal : acpiapic
      Version : 10.0.17134
      ServicePack Build : 1
      ServicePack Level : 1
      Edition : Professional
      Installation : Client
      ProductType : WinNT
      ProductSuite : Terminal Server
      System Root : WINDOWS
      Directories : 45803
      Files : 203058
      Created : 2018.05.06 - 01:55:47
      Modified : 2018.05.06 - 01:55:48
      Languages :
              en-US (Default)

  The operation completed successfully.


PS $  dism /get-wiminfo /wimfile:Base.wim /index:3

  Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
  Version: 10.0.18362.1

    Details for image : Base.wim

      Index : 3
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Installed (Customized)
      Size : 94,958,267,312 bytes
      WIM Bootable : No
      Architecture : x64
      Hal : acpiapic
      Version : 10.0.17134
      ServicePack Build : 1
      ServicePack Level : 81
      Edition : Professional
      Installation : Client
      ProductType : WinNT
      ProductSuite : Terminal Server
      System Root : WINDOWS
      Directories : 62409
      Files : 350446
      Created : 2018.06.01 - 19:09:51
      Modified : 2018.06.19 - 21:26:18
      Languages :
              en-US (Default)

  The operation completed successfully.


PS $  dism /get-wiminfo /wimfile:Base.wim /index:4

  Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
  Version: 10.0.18362.1

    Details for image : Base.wim

      Index : 4
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Group 1 Installed (Customized)
      Size : 101,588,267,910 bytes
      WIM Bootable : No
      Architecture : x64
      Hal : acpiapic
      Version : 10.0.17134
      ServicePack Build : 1
      ServicePack Level : 81
      Edition : Professional
      Installation : Client
      ProductType : WinNT
      ProductSuite : Terminal Server
      System Root : WINDOWS
      Directories : 61908
      Files : 346074
      Created : 2018.06.08 - 21:54:02
      Modified : 2018.06.19 - 21:26:18
      Languages :
              en-US (Default)

  The operation completed successfully.


PS $  dism /get-wiminfo /wimfile:Base.wim /index:5

  Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
  Version: 10.0.18362.1

    Details for image : Base.wim

      Index : 5
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1803: Software Group 2 Installed (Customized)
      Size : 101,905,314,237 bytes
      WIM Bootable : No
      Architecture : x64
      Hal : acpiapic
      Version : 10.0.17134
      ServicePack Build : 1
      ServicePack Level : 81
      Edition : Professional
      Installation : Client
      ProductType : WinNT
      ProductSuite : Terminal Server
      System Root : WINDOWS
      Directories : 76113
      Files : 423408
      Created : 2018.06.09 - 20:38:36
      Modified : 2018.06.19 - 21:26:18
      Languages :
              en-US (Default)

  The operation completed successfully.


PS $  dism /get-wiminfo /wimfile:Base.wim /index:6

  Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool
  Version: 10.0.18362.1

    Details for image : Base.wim

      Index : 6
      Name : Alienware 18: Windows 10
      Description : v1809: Updated Applications
      Size : 114,959,954,040 bytes
      WIM Bootable : No
      Architecture : x64
      Hal : acpiapic
      Version : 10.0.17763
      ServicePack Build : 195
      ServicePack Level : 0
      Edition : Professional
      Installation : Client
      ProductType : WinNT
      ProductSuite : Terminal Server
      System Root : WINDOWS
      Directories : 87659
      Files : 452028
      Created : 2018.12.24 - 04:27:13
      Modified : 2018.12.24 - 04:27:15
      Languages :
              en-US (Default)

  The operation completed successfully.
  • JW why not simply use the "Link" function to highlight the number to make it clickable, as opposed to a ghastly long list? – DankyNanky Mar 26 '18 at 15:36
  • 1
    @MichaelNancarrow That can be blamed on the site, as links for new users are limited. – JW0914 Mar 27 '18 at 0:22
  • 1
    @MichaelNancarrow All links changed back to links =] – JW0914 Apr 3 '18 at 1:49
  • Very well done sir. – DankyNanky Apr 3 '18 at 6:40

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