Acronis True Image & Norton Ghost are two good shareware which are used to create an image of the entire partition when the machine is in a clean state. With this image then, one can always restore back to it should the need ever arise.
Free Acronis True Image Alternative & Norton Ghost Alternatives
However, here are a few freeware imaging tools which you may try out:
It is the only free Windows compatible disk imaging software with BartPE and Linux-based recovery options.
- Create a disk image whilst running Windows using Microsoft Volume Shadow copy Service (VSS).
- Image to Network, USB, FireWire drives and DVD.
- Built in scheduler.
- 32 bit and native 64 bit versions.
- Industry leading compression levels and speed.
- Linux-based Rescue CD with Network access and full GUI. Only 6.5MB in size!
- Built in CD/DVD packet writing engine – Supports packet writing to DVD DL media with Windows 7 and Vista.
- HTML log files.
DriveImage XML is A “Norton Ghost Alternative” ! It is a HDD backup and restoration software similar to Norton Ghost but FREE, the software enables you create a complete backup image of any drive or partition, You can restore later restore the image to same or another partition, you can also clone a drive to another. The program also includes an image explorer similar to Norton Ghost Image Explorer that lets you explore previously created backup images and extract individual files. It’s a 1.61 MB download.
DiscWizard is an “Acronis Clone” ! Most know of Acronis True Image, which is a popular hard-drive backup software. But you can get a Vista compatible, re-branded version of True Image with the name DiscWizard as a free legal download from the Seagate website. Its a 104 MB download.
Clonezilla, based on DRBL, Partition Image, ntfsclone, partclone, and udpcast, allows you to do bare metal backup and recovery. Two types of Clonezilla are available, Clonezilla Live and Clonezilla SE (server edition). Clonezilla live is suitable for single machine backup and restore.
Partimage is a Linux utility which saves partitions having a supported file system to an image file. Most Linux and Windows file-systems are supported. The image file can be compressed with the gzip / bzip2 programs to save disk space, and they can be split into multiple files to be copied on CDs / DVDs.
Probably the best available Linux toolbox for rescuing a system;
- Backup and Restore partitions or files locally or to the network
- Backup and Restore the BIOS data as well;
- Either burn a bootable CD / DVD, either integrate within a PXE / RIS environment;
- Possibility to Blank local admin’s password;
- Create your own restoration bootable DVD
- Partition and Format a disk before installing Windows.
EASEUS ToDo Backup Home is a free file backup and disaster recovery software, protecting your data, including photos, music, videos, documents, financial data and applications.