Several users use third-party utilities like Acronis True Image and Macrium Reflect to create an image backup of the Windows operating system. Gone are the days of using third-party applications to create an image backup.
With Windows 7, everything is possible now. Just say goodbye to Acronis True Image before we get into the innards of this post. We can now create an image (clone) backup of drives easily using the in-built Image Backup tool in Windows 7. Though there are some limitations, basic Windows users will find this tool very useful. So how to access and use this feature?
Create Windows 7 image backup using Image Backup tool
Step 1: Open Control Panel, under System and Security, open Backup your computer option.
Step 2: In the left pane, click on the Create an image backup link.
Step 3: Select the destination drive or Optical drive or network location to store backup files.
Step 4: Click on the Next button to include/exclude drives in the image backup. Note that the disk where Windows 7 is installed will always be included in the backup. Also, you cannot include the disk that you are saving the backup to.
Step 5: In the next step, Windows 7 will give the last chance to confirm the backup settings you have chosen in the previous step. Once you agree with the backup settings, click the Start backup button to start the backup process. Backup process make take few minutes to hours depending on the size of the disk.
Step 6: After finishing the backup process, Windows 7 offers an option to create a recovery CD so that you can restore the created image using the bootable recovery disc.