HDD backup software?


Limp Gawd
Oct 30, 2010
I'm building a new system and need some advice on backup methods/software. I am planning to use an SSD for the Win7 OS drive (and at least basic programs), and would like to have the ability to copy the contents to another drive and have this backup drive be bootable if possible. This is so that in the event of a OS drive failure I could use the backup until a replacement can be added. Data will be stored on other drives which are already backed-up.

I have looked briefly at software to accomplish this, but it's overwhelming without actually trying out the software/hardware in actual usage.

Can this be done in any simple way?
Do I need to use an empty drive as the destination for the OS drive backup?
Any suggestions on software to use?


Supreme [H]ardness
Jan 2, 2005
Acronis True Image Home is one good option. Backup jobs can be scheduled, and for various types (full, incremential, differential, etc.). I've used it on a variety of hardware, both consumer- and server-grade, and it's worked perfectly. Other good options can be found by searching this forum.


Jan 2, 2007
We really need a sticky with the below.

Acronis True Image WD Edition Software

Seagate DiscWizard (Acronis True Image)

Both are Acronis True Image software that is branded for either company. It is completely free to use as long as at least one of the drives is either brand of the designated software.

Acronis True Image will clone a bootable HDD to another HDD (doesn't need to be the same size) and make the new drive bootable if desired along with much more.

I've been using Seagate DiscWizard since it was the most basic ui (5 years), and hardly had anything to it. These days it's been prettied up, and has Acronis written all over it, but still does everything you need, in a straight forward manner.


[H]F Junkie
Jul 19, 2004
We really need a sticky with the below.

Yup...would save the same replies on an almost weekly basis.
Although peeps rarely read the stickies..just look at the "How do I clean this virus/spyware" questions..and they never find the sticky in the Network and Security forum with all the tools and tips you need.


Apr 22, 2007
Ok first of all, I would love to have a sticky. Surely, the amount of repetition in threads and replies would at least be reduced, even if not eliminated entirely.

Secondly, this is great that someone posted the same question that I've been pondering myself. Similar to the OP, I have a SSD as a boot drive. It contains Win7, installed programs and games. I also have a storage drive for all my "data" (music, documents, videos, etc. etc.)

Acronis True Image will clone a bootable HDD to another HDD (doesn't need to be the same size) and make the new drive bootable if desired along with much more.

Ok I would like more clarification on this. If I cloned my SSD to my storage HDD, then how would it work?
1. Would I simply see a large file on my HDD containing the image of the SSD, similar to a .ISO file for a ripped CD/DVD?
2. If so, then would it be the size of my entire SSD or would be the size of only the filled space on my SSD?
3. If my SSD later completely dies and I buy a new SSD, then would I use Acronis again to write the stored image file onto the new SSD and that's it? The new SSD would then be all good to go?

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