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Author Topic: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager  (Read 2972 times)

tinjaw

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Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« on: November 10, 2009, 07:49:07 AM »
I have some laptops at work that I wish to configure as such:

Boot to a menu that has...
1) Boot to WinXP
2) Boot to Vista
3) Restore to clean WinXP
4) Restore to clean Vista

This would allow me to boot to either WinXP or Vista and when I want to wipe either image clean and start over I just choose option 3 or 4 and it copies over the cloned image and reboots.

I know there are several programs out there that can probably do this, but I don't know which one or combination that gets me what I want. So this is the first stop on my research path.

Thanks as always for you help.

mrHappy

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2009, 08:40:36 AM »
Never tried it myself, so don't know if it does exactly what you want.
But from everything I've read and heard BootIt NG should be at least close to what you're looking for.
There are only 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand binary and those who have friends.

tinjaw

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2009, 08:49:10 AM »
Thank you. BootIt NG has a good reputation, but it is shareware, not freeware. I need a freeware solution.

4wd

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2009, 11:13:07 AM »
An off the top of my head suggestion:

Use GRUB4DOS as the boot menu, setting it up per normal for booting into XP/Vista.

For the recovery part, first create partition images using Partition Saving.
Create two Partition Saving boot floppies, one has an autoexec.bat that will restore the XP partition, the other to restore the Vista partition (Partition Saving has rather extensive options, the archive has a description and examples on how to create an options file).

So the autoexec.bat on one floppy might have 'savepart -r -f XP.cfg', to restore XP.  On the other floppy it might have 'savepart -r -f Vista.cfg' to restore the Vista partition.

Then turn the two floppies into images using WinImage (30 day trial), (eg. RestoreXP.img and RestVsta.img), and use GRUB4DOS to boot them from it's menu.

This should give you a boot menu with your four choices and costs nothing except a little reading and preparation.

tinjaw

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2009, 12:21:40 PM »
GRUB4DOS and Partition Saving sound good. But I need a "fully legit" solution instead of WinImage. I have UltraISO myself, but that is a personal license and not one I can let the folks at work use. And I don't have floppy drives on these machine, so I want a virtual floppy solution.

beermatt

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2009, 05:34:58 PM »
FloppyImage is free and allows you to read/write disk images to/from physical disks (I've used it for adding images to UBCD, you may need to select "Create compatible IMG files" under "Settings").

Also if you have a network it may be worth looking at FOG..?

tomos

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2009, 06:04:20 PM »
GRUB4DOS and Partition Saving sound good. But I need a "fully legit" solution instead of WinImage. I have UltraISO myself, but that is a personal license and not one I can let the folks at work use. And I don't have floppy drives on these machine, so I want a virtual floppy solution.

so you're looking for free for commercial use -
have you checked out Steven Avery's thread here listing software free for commercial use?
Here's the post about backup etc:
http://www.donationc....msg169835#msg169835
Tom

4wd

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2009, 09:28:59 PM »
FloppyImage is free and allows you to read/write disk images to/from physical disks (I've used it for adding images to UBCD, you may need to select "Create compatible IMG files" under "Settings").

Good catch!  I won't have to keep downloading WinImage to create an image now :)

Quote
Also if you have a network it may be worth looking at FOG..?

I think that requires user-interaction, like PiNG, which is why I didn't suggest PiNG in the first place.  My read was tinjaw was looking for a 'Hit button, wait for reboot' kind of restoration.

tinjaw

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2009, 11:00:36 AM »
FloppyImage is free and allows you to read/write disk images to/from physical disks

I took a look at the description of Floppy Image and it doesn't look I can create floppy images without creating a physical floppy first and then imaging that. I don't have floppies on any of these computers at work. We haven't have floppy drives in our computers for probably four years.

4wd

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Re: Looking for freeware ghost clone with boot manager
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2009, 01:15:15 PM »
You're really making us work for this.....give Virtual Floppy Drive a go.  Just tried it on XP and it let me change the contents.

Just noticed you mentioned no floppy drives previously.



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« Last Edit: November 12, 2009, 01:42:21 PM by 4wd »