How to Create a Backup System Image in Windows 7

Even the tallest building in the World will come crashing down one day, not to mention your vulnerable operating system. The question is: when your system crashed, do you have the required backup to get it up and running again?

In Windows 7, there is this feature that allows you to clone your system to an image file so you can restore from it in the event some disasters happened. In this article, we are going to show you how to clone your system drive in Windows 7 and restore your system from that.

Cloning your system

1. In the Start menu search box, type “backup and restore” and press “Enter”. It will open the Backup and Restore window in control panel. Now Click on “Create a system image” from left side of the window.


2. Once the “Create a System image” window appears, choose “On a hard disk” option and locate the drive where you want to save the backup. You can also choose DVDs option, but be forewarned that it will require more than one DVD to complete the backup. Using an external hard disk would be a better choice.


3. After confirming the backup location, you can click on the “Next” button to proceed in the next step. Here is where you choose the drive to backup. The system drive (C:) is checked by default. For other drives, simply check the box beside them to include them in your backup.


4. In this step, you have to confirm whether you have selected the right location of backup and the correct drives which you want to backup. Click the “Start backup” button once you have checked everything is correct.


5. The backup process will take some time to finish. You can go for your coffee break for now.


After the backup is completed, you can now remove your external hard drive and keep the backup image file in a safe place.

Restoring from the backup image

To restore your PC from the backup image, you can either boot it up from the startup screen (if your OS cannot be booted up anymore) or restore from the control panel (when you just want to revert back to an older setting).

Restore from Control Panel

1. Type “backup and restore” in the Start menu search box to open Backup and Restore window.

2. Click on “Recover system settings or your computer”.


3. Click on “Advanced recovery methods”.


4. Choose the option “Use a system image you created earlier to recover your computer”.


5. Now you’ll get a option to back up the files like documents, pictures, music, located in the current system drive. You can skip this process by clicking the “Skip” button.


6. Hit the “Restart” button. When your computer starts again, just choose the location of the backup image file and proceed.

Restore from startup screen

1. Restart you computer, hold down the F8 key when booting to enter the advanced boot option menu.

2. Select your preferred keyboard layout. Click Next to proceed.

3. Put a user name and password, click OK.

4. Choose “System Image Recovery” from the System Recovery option menu and follow the instructions.

That’s all to create a backup system image and restore your system from it. Do let us know if you use any other ways to backup/restore your PC.


Tanmay Ahmed is the administrator as well as the owner of the tech blog TechsGig where he regularly writes about computer tips & tricks, OS hacks, free online web tools and much more. In real life he is a student of computer science from Kolkata,India and he is very much passionate about being a professional blogger. He is here to share his knowledge that he gained from his student & blogging life.

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