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Create a Windows 10 System Image using the Best Free Alternatives

How to Use EaseUS Todo Backup Free

EaseUS Todo Backup Free provides similar backup options. I appreciated its simplicity in a number of areas: easy to find and download, simple setup wizard and quick installation. While EaseUS Todo Backup doesn’t offer quite as many features and functionality as those found in Macrium Reflect, I find it sufficient for basic backup and recovery.

After completing the installation, launch EaseUS Todo Backup; you will be prompted to step up to the Home version offering additional features. To be frank, I don’t need some of the features offered like Outlook email backup, email notifications and scheduled-based backups. EaseUS Todo Backup does include cloning, which lets you transfer your installation to a new hard disk or SSD, or a new computer.

EaseUS Todo Backup also includes file and folder based backup. For our particular needs, we want to perform a system backup, which creates an image of your Windows 10 installation. To begin, click the System Backup button. Browse to where you want the image stored (external drive). Create a new folder then label it, select it then click OK.

EaseUS Todo Backup also includes retention options, which let users manage how much space is used by backups. Click the Image Reserve Strategy menu, then choose your options for when you want backups to be created and how they are preserved and deleted.

Click Proceed to begin the backup. According to EaseUS Todo, backups with the free version are a little slower, but I don’t think it’s much of a deterrent. Using a USB 3.0 external drive, the backup of a 68 GB partition completed in about 10 minutes. So, the time will vary depending on the size of your installation. Sit back, relax and give it some time to complete.

Create Emergency Disk

After your backup is created, proceed to create a rescue disc, which you can use to restore your image. Just like Macrium, EaseUS Todo’s rescue media is based on Microsoft’s Windows Imaging Format. When you boot from it, you will notice it uses the same Windows 10 pre-boot environment to load its own recovery application.

Click the Tools menu, then click Create Emergency Disk. The Emergency disk wizard offers several options, which include creating an emergency disk based on WinPE or Linux. Boot media can also be in the form of a USB thumb drive, DVD/CD or ISO image.

Restore Image – EaseUS Todo

When you are ready to restore an image, configure your computer to boot from the installation media. Make sure your external drive is connected and powered on. I noticed that if you connect after booting into the recovery environment, EaseUS doesn’t detect the drive.

Once booted into the recovery environment for EaseUS Todo, click the Browse to Recover button.

Browse the folder on your external drive containing the system backup image file, click OK.

Click Next.

Choose the local drive where you would like to have the image restored then click Proceed. When the restoration is complete, close the EaseUS recover application. Your Windows 10 installation should be up and running.

Conclusion

That’s a look at two solid options for users who want to migrate from Windows 10’s System Image. Of course, they work differently, but you will appreciate some of the benefits included in both such as cloning, easier migration from one system to the another and automated and granular options for backup.

Macrium is the more powerful of the two, featuring a lot more options, some of which are a bit too advanced for the average user. But if you want to grow with your backup solution, its there if you need it. EaseUS Todo Backup is bare bones, but something about that makes it feel lighter and more approachable. At the same time, it could be a little more intelligent, but what do you expect? Whichever solution you decide on, you won’t regret it.

Are you already using Macrium or EaseUS Todo Backup or another solution? Let us know what you think in the comments.

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6 Responses to Create a Windows 10 System Image using the Best Free Alternatives

  1. Milton Almeida Canabrava August 29, 2017 at 8:12 am #

    Intrusive software can generate problems with Windows 10 upgrades, specially with new compilations. I’ve already problems with antivirus in Creators Update.

    • James August 31, 2017 at 8:25 am #

      Could you let us know what anti-virus that is, and which options of which facilities you are running.

      I have had ‘fun’ trying to setup anti-malware processing on the apps I run, without including the data files those apps process –
      As in an audiobook download facility where the malware checker scans the downloaded parts, the re-combined files, and then the files as I set the PC to play them, or copy them to my MP3 store, and then again as they get copied to the player.
      I gave up with Symantec offerings when they applied Symantec values to the ‘NORTON’ product they acquired.
      And – then had so much ‘fun’ getting rid of the -install facilities – even using the specially supplied to me – REMOVAL programs – that didn’t and left the remnants trying to use the partition most space as a work area – And that included any removable drives that were attached at startup – so locking them in always in-use.

      Also – advisable at all times to turn off 3rd party anti-malware when installing new OS – or updates to the running one.
      BUT
      MICROSOFT does not want you to be able to do that – or to take a backup of the system before MICROSOFT changes the OS –

      And – remember Windows is a Service provided to you – and YOU cannot go to court complaining it (in it’s many guises and varying versions)

      Is NOT FIT FOR PURPOSE

  2. James August 29, 2017 at 8:45 am #

    Andre, Great article,

    and I’m probably going include Macrium
    in place of the Paragon I currently use alongside Eaesus TODO.

    Some considerations for the preferred app:
    And apologies if I repeated anything in your article

    Want to be able to move the backup to another location – is it all 1 large file, or can you specify 4GB files

    Want to be able to get individual files back – as in the word doc before you saved the file with (now) only pages 1 & 2 –
    so can you just access the backup as a folder set and drag the files you want to a new place on the PC’s normal folders –
    or do you have to ‘Mount’ the backup as a partition image and then access that as if it was a separate drive.

    Then again – can you access old files using an incremental process – or would adding something like Spideroak be useful – just for les you type ‘stuff’ into

    OK – incremental may allow access on a per day basis! Does the app you are considering?
    BUT daily incrementals means the RESTORE could be slow.
    And – you’d maybe want to take a new full save on a monthly basis – especially if the incrementals total to double or more than the space for the full save

    Me – I take a backup to a USB attached drive, then copy the backup set of 4GB files to cloud storage
    Don’t have to do that unless I consider that bringing the old backup up-to-date would be very painful
    And I have separate backups of the data files –
    The main thoughts regarding backup – should be WHAT catastrophe would I want to recover from

    So – home burgled PC with backups and all documents taken
    Malware encrypted all the MFT’s and data files i could access
    Windows just will not start – hard drive dead – or motherboard dead or windows files damaged.
    Consider the effort to backup against the effort to recover from that backup.

    I would also recommend having at least 2 different backup facilities – painful when the new app will NOT read the old files.

    My recovery –
    Rebuild the OS and installed and specialised software from backup or install DVD’s
    Bring back the saved data files from my file level backup
    Bring back the Spideroak – as I work backups of the stuff I typed-in
    Bring back my email – whatever I keep on the PC – see the retain for a second PC option on your account settings for the providers server.
    Take a new backup as soon as I believe the system is in an appropriate state- but keep the previous ‘good’ one.

    And – Cloud storage for backups –

    Back to the problems with Onedrive – 1TB free for each user when you subscribe to Office-365 seems great for ‘other location backup storage’

    Latest ‘find’ in my attempts to use it
    – having uploaded my document and e-book collection
    Blocks of 2000 files so I can do visual compare of source set with upload actually done
    To identify what actually still needs uploading
    I combined the upload sets into a folder of 40,000 files – painful at 200 files done for each ‘Move’ directive
    Now – having found that I can drag &drop more than 200 files at a time – if I can see source and destination in the same Onedrive window
    So- I then try to move that folder of 40,000 files to another users Onedrive area – having edit permission to their folder
    Persistently EDGE session falls over and IE session reports an error occurred – seems like the app cannot handle folders with lots of files in them.
    And .. Onedrive app does not always -process work in the order you specified it!
    So load a folder with files – and then copy the folder may have the copy run after just a few files have been uploaded.

  3. Dr Abdul Rasheed August 29, 2017 at 8:50 am #

    Great info. I have been using the professional version of Macrium for the last few years. I always take an Image backup when I feel that the system is now running perfect. This enables me to take some risks with suspecious softwares. The re-imaging is also very smooth.
    Free version of Acronis true image is also equally good. But I prefer macrium.
    Folder backup is another facility.
    I am using Microsoft outlook as my email client for more than 15 years. I have hundreds of folders and sub folders under my Inbox. To keep them safe I take an image backup of the folder where my .pst files are stored once in every 7 days.

  4. Milton Almeida Canabrava August 31, 2017 at 9:15 am #

    Concerning James’ reply and mine one,I’ve had problems with Avast free (installed with it’s performance and optimization paid module). I’d like to inform same kind of problems with Norton (pre installed with Windows 10 in a Samsung i3 notebook). Finally, I’ve also had same kind of problems with the Samsung pre installed updater software.

  5. beergas September 3, 2017 at 3:36 pm #

    Macrium Reflect – still using free 6.3 Series & Windows 10 x64 Pro. Do a twice weekly backup to be safe and preserve Outlook emails. Easier to just redo the whole C drive again rather than use a faster files only type saving program since a major system issue is quicker repaired by replacement.
    A full image repairs the registry too. If I’ve blown away a file then Recuva is faster than the 30 mins to restore a full C drive. Just be good about setting warning to do those backups. Darn easy to get lazy and skip doing one even though you can still use PC, but not so for restore of course.
    Series 7 looking pretty pricey when 6 works just fine. Will be checking to see if EaseUS improves.

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