Solved Clone


Haydon

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Some folks make a full backup every week. I wonder why not make a clone every week. And if in the middle of the week, the computer won't boot, use the clone instead of the recovery USB stick.

Particularly for folks that use a separate data disk so that C: only contains OS and apps, make a fresh clone of C: on a 500GB SSD every week.

I may be completely off base, but why not?
 

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Some folks make a full backup every week. I wonder why not make a clone every week. And if in the middle of the week, the computer won't boot, use the clone instead of the recovery USB stick.

Particularly for folks that use a separate data disk so that C: only contains OS and apps, make a fresh clone of C: on a 500GB SSD every week.

I may be completely off base, but why not?


Making a clone is much slower than making a backup.
 

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For me it's because I run laptops and it would be impractical to do so, plus as @Ghot says, imaging is faster and you can keep more than one image on an external.
 

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Forums on the internet are littered with the tears of users as a result of failed cloning exercises.

Imaging much more stable and reliable.
 

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    Windows 11 22H2 (latest update ... forever anal)
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    8GB
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Forums on the internet are littered with the tears of users as a result of failed cloning exercises.

Imaging much more stable and reliable.
I agree.
 

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    Windows 11
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    Homebuilt
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    ASUS ROG Crosshair VII Hero (WiFi)
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    32GB
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    EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti
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    Dell Inspiron 7773
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    Intel i7-8550U
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    32GB
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    Nvidia Geforce MX150
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    Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17"
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    Toshiba 512GB NVMe SSD
    SK Hynix 512GB SATA SSD
    Internet Speed
    Fast!
A clone takes space of whole disk including empty space, everything. A backup backs up only data from disk making it much smaller and even smaller when it uses compression (like MR does). Disk will be usable for anything else up to it's capacity.
 

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    W10 and Insider Dev.+ Linux Mint
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    Home brewed
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    AMD Ryzen 9 7900x
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    ASROCK b650 PRO RS
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    2x8GB Kingston 6000MHz, Cl 32 @ 6200MHz Cl30
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    MB, Realtek Ac1220p
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    Kingston KC3000. 1TBSamsung 970 evo Plus 500GB, Crucial P1 NVMe 1TB, Lexar NVMe 2 TB, Silicon Power M.2 SATA 500GB
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    Seasonic 750W
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    Custom Raidmax
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    Arctic Liquid Freezer III 360mm
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    20/19 mbps
Thanks for the comments, folks, here are my thoughts.

Quoting from a parallel thread "Cloning takes more than twice the time than imaging." The time difference does not sound too outrageous.

Quoted from this thread "Imaging much more stable and reliable." That of course, is pretty serious. It would mean to test run a clone every time it is made, adding time to the clone method.

On the other hand, a clone would preserve BitLocker, whereas image+restore would not, adding time to the image+restore method for BitLocker reconfiguration.

Quoted from this thread "A clone takes space of whole disk" Yeah, that's why I was thinking of buying a dedicated SSD, a small 500GB would do, they are not really that expensive these days.

Edit: Is MR the best tool for making clones? I hope this honest question does not cause a religious warfare. Just the facts, ma'am!
 
Last edited:

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10 Pro
I got hold of an SSD, made a clone with MR, but it won't boot. I think it has to do with BitLocker rather than MR, I use a BitLocker configuration that requires a USB key and a PIN, which complicates things. I made limited attempts to make the clone boot, but then stopped, too afraid of making a mistake with BitLocker.

So, the conventional wisdom prevails, clone (n) and image (y)

I will mark this thread 'Solved', thanks to all who responded!
 

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I agree that the full backup is faster. My 1TB SSD backs up in just over 8 minutes to an external SSD.
 

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    MSI MPG X570S Edge Max WiFi
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    Corsair Vengeance RGB PRO 64GB (2x32GB) DDR4 3600 (PC4-28800) C18
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    ASUS GeForce RTX 4070 Super OC 12GB DDR6 / ZOTAC RTX 3060 Twin Edge OC 12GB GDDR6
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    Proprietary on MB
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    ViewSonic XG2530 25"/Benq XL2411P 24"/ ASUS VA24DQSB) 23.8"
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    1920x1080 240Hz/144Hz/60Hz (based on monitor setup above)
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    SK hynix Gold P31 1TB PCIe NVMe Gen3 M.2 2280 Internal SSD
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    Home Built
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    Ryzen 7 3700X
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    MSI B550 Gaming GEN3 Gaming Motherboard
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    32MB DDR4
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    I forget, but it's old. I can't see the need to upgrade it.
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    ACER LED 24"
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    1920X1080
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    1TB Samsung SSD 3.5"
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    Logitech
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    Logitech
    Internet Speed
    ~750Mb/s download / ~750Mb/s upload
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    Edge
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    Defender and Malware Bytes
Thanks for the comments, folks, here are my thoughts.

Quoting from a parallel thread "Cloning takes more than twice the time than imaging." The time difference does not sound too outrageous.

Quoted from this thread "Imaging much more stable and reliable." That of course, is pretty serious. It would mean to test run a clone every time it is made, adding time to the clone method.

On the other hand, a clone would preserve BitLocker, whereas image+restore would not, adding time to the image+restore method for BitLocker reconfiguration.

Quoted from this thread "A clone takes space of whole disk" Yeah, that's why I was thinking of buying a dedicated SSD, a small 500GB would do, they are not really that expensive these days.

Edit: Is MR the best tool for making clones? I hope this honest question does not cause a religious warfare. Just the facts, ma'am!
Cloning takes more than twice the time than imaging. 5x longer from my recent test.
I just did this test last weekend on my thread here. Done on the same PC.

You can't stack up a clone backup like image back up. Unless you want to stack up partitions or physical drives.
With imaging, you have an option to keep quarterly version of your OS neatly on a folder and restore them faster.

1648079482934.png
 

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    Windows 11 Pro
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    MSI MPG Gaming Edge Wifi (X570)
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    32GB Adata XPG DDR4
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    i7-4790K
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    ASRock Xtreme6 Z97
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    16GB Corsair Vengeance Pro
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I fail to understand why anyone would want to handle backups using the clone function. All the replies give all the positive reasons for using backup, but I fail to see one positive comment about a clone. There are proper circumstances for using a clone, backup NOT being one of them.
 

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    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3593
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    Dell Optiplex 7080
    CPU
    i9-10900 10 core 20 threads
    Motherboard
    DELL 0J37VM
    Memory
    32 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    none-Intel UHD Graphics 630
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    Integrated Realtek
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    Benq 27
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    2560x1440
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    1tb Solidigm m.2 +256gb ssd+512 gb usb m.2 sata
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    500w
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    Dell Premium
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    Logitech wired
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    so slow I'm too embarrassed to tell
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    Defender+MWB Premium
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    Windows 10 Pro 22H2 19045.3930
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    Dell Optiplex 9020
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    i7-4770
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    Dell factory
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    Logitech wired
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    still not telling
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    Defender+MWB Premium
I fail to understand why anyone would want to handle backups using the clone function. All the replies give all the positive reasons for using backup, but I fail to see one positive comment about a clone. There are proper circumstances for using a clone, backup NOT being one of them.
I can think of one, but it really isn't a backup solution. For critical systems that absolutely cannot suffer downtime due to a drive failure, then use Raid 1 so that if one drive fails, you have an immediate and uninterrupted backup which also allows for hot swapping out the failed drive.
 

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  • OS
    Windows 11
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    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Homebuilt
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3800XT
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Crosshair VII Hero (WiFi)
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Education
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspiron 7773
    CPU
    Intel i7-8550U
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Geforce MX150
    Sound Card
    Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17"
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    Toshiba 512GB NVMe SSD
    SK Hynix 512GB SATA SSD
    Internet Speed
    Fast!
A clone takes space of whole disk including empty space, everything. A backup backs up only data from disk making it much smaller and even smaller when it uses compression (like MR does). Disk will be usable for anything else up to it's capacity.
This is not actually true. Clones from Reflect use smart sector backup by default. In fact you do not even have to use full capacity of target drive. You are correct inasmuch as a clone is not compressed like an image
 

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  • OS
    Windows 10 Pro + others in VHDs
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    ASUS Vivobook 14
    CPU
    I7
    Motherboard
    Yep, Laptop has one.
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Integrated Intel Iris XE
    Sound Card
    Realtek built in
    Monitor(s) Displays
    N/A
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    1 TB Optane NVME SSD, 1 TB NVME SSD
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    Yep, got one
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    Yep, got one
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    Stella Artois
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    Built in
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    72 Mb/s :-(
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    Edge mostly
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    Defender
    Other Info
    TPM 2.0
I fail to understand why anyone would want to handle backups using the clone function. All the replies give all the positive reasons for using backup, but I fail to see one positive comment about a clone. There are proper circumstances for using a clone, backup NOT being one of them.
The important point to understand the primary function of a clone versus image.

The primary function of a clone is to create a drive that can be swapped immediately if the existing drive fails.

An image's primary function is to restore a backup to the existing drive e.g. due to a bad update.

Of course, you can use an image to clone to a new drive but it needs intermediate steps.

Also, you can have multiple images on a drive but only one clone (that is not strictly true either as you can clone multiple drives to a single large drive but complicated to do and you end up with multiple efi partitions).

I use cloning to clone an existing OS to a vhd quite often as well.

So each has their use, depending on your objective.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10 Pro + others in VHDs
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    ASUS Vivobook 14
    CPU
    I7
    Motherboard
    Yep, Laptop has one.
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Integrated Intel Iris XE
    Sound Card
    Realtek built in
    Monitor(s) Displays
    N/A
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    1 TB Optane NVME SSD, 1 TB NVME SSD
    PSU
    Yep, got one
    Case
    Yep, got one
    Cooling
    Stella Artois
    Keyboard
    Built in
    Mouse
    Bluetooth , wired
    Internet Speed
    72 Mb/s :-(
    Browser
    Edge mostly
    Antivirus
    Defender
    Other Info
    TPM 2.0
I fail to understand why anyone would want to handle backups using the clone function. All the replies give all the positive reasons for using backup, but I fail to see one positive comment about a clone. There are proper circumstances for using a clone, backup NOT being one of them.
I think some paid software has copy protection that marks something somewhere on one of the sectors on the installed disk OR maybe reads some serial number of the disk. I don't know 100%, but some programs no longer run if restored from a regular backup, but they do when restored from and Disk Image (also called a CloneImage, or Sector By Sector) backup.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
During the pre-Macrium era, cloning is my best friend. That was when I first joined the Eight Forums.
And I have this Startech cloning device that does not require a PC to make clones. It makes a clone directly from one drive to another. I still have it up to now but haven't been using it for years. It can clone any OS or just make a duplicate of a data drive.

20220323_225038-kdcollage.jpg
 

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  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 9 3900X
    Motherboard
    MSI MPG Gaming Edge Wifi (X570)
    Memory
    32GB Adata XPG DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS GTX 1070 8GB ROG
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG Ultrawide 34"
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440
    Hard Drives
    Main Boot Drive : 512GB Adata XPG RGB Gen3x4 NVMe M.2 SSD
    PSU
    EVGA 600 Watts Gold
    Case
    Deepcool Genome II
    Cooling
    Deepcool Fryzen
    Internet Speed
    1Gbps
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    "Moderna"
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i7-4790K
    Motherboard
    ASRock Xtreme6 Z97
    Memory
    16GB Corsair Vengeance Pro
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    MSI R9 290
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    LG Ultrawide 34"
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440
    Hard Drives
    Samsung M.2
    PSU
    Thermaltake 475 Watts 80 Bronze
    Case
    Thermaltake Commander I Snow Edition
    Cooling
    Deep Cool Archer Air Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech G402
    Keyboard
    Armageddon MKA-5R RGB-Hornet
    Internet Speed
    1Gbps
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Moderna :)
During the pre-Macrium era, cloning is my best friend. That was when I first joined the Eight Forums.
And I have this Startech cloning device that does not require a PC to make clones. It makes a clone directly from one drive to another. I still have it up to now but haven't been using it for years. It can clone any OS or just make a duplicate of a data drive.

View attachment 25226
But you have to pull drives out.
 

My Computer

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  • OS
    W10 and Insider Dev.+ Linux Mint
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home brewed
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 9 7900x
    Motherboard
    ASROCK b650 PRO RS
    Memory
    2x8GB Kingston 6000MHz, Cl 32 @ 6200MHz Cl30
    Graphics Card(s)
    Gigabyte Rx 6600XT Gaming OC 8G Pro
    Sound Card
    MB, Realtek Ac1220p
    Monitor(s) Displays
    3 x 27"
    Screen Resolution
    1080p
    Hard Drives
    Kingston KC3000. 1TBSamsung 970 evo Plus 500GB, Crucial P1 NVMe 1TB, Lexar NVMe 2 TB, Silicon Power M.2 SATA 500GB
    PSU
    Seasonic 750W
    Case
    Custom Raidmax
    Cooling
    Arctic Liquid Freezer III 360mm
    Internet Speed
    20/19 mbps
But you have to pull drives out.
That wasn't a problem for me at the time because I have pullout drive drawers on my PC which is still alive right now as my secondary machine. It is now running on my unsupported 4790K CPU (though I have W11 on it... 😁).
I also don't like to multi-boot at the time. I just pull out the rest of the drives and push in the drive that I want to boot up.


Screenshot_20220323-225807_Gallery.jpg
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 9 3900X
    Motherboard
    MSI MPG Gaming Edge Wifi (X570)
    Memory
    32GB Adata XPG DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS GTX 1070 8GB ROG
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG Ultrawide 34"
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440
    Hard Drives
    Main Boot Drive : 512GB Adata XPG RGB Gen3x4 NVMe M.2 SSD
    PSU
    EVGA 600 Watts Gold
    Case
    Deepcool Genome II
    Cooling
    Deepcool Fryzen
    Internet Speed
    1Gbps
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    "Moderna"
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i7-4790K
    Motherboard
    ASRock Xtreme6 Z97
    Memory
    16GB Corsair Vengeance Pro
    Graphics card(s)
    MSI R9 290
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG Ultrawide 34"
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440
    Hard Drives
    Samsung M.2
    PSU
    Thermaltake 475 Watts 80 Bronze
    Case
    Thermaltake Commander I Snow Edition
    Cooling
    Deep Cool Archer Air Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech G402
    Keyboard
    Armageddon MKA-5R RGB-Hornet
    Internet Speed
    1Gbps
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Moderna :)
That wasn't a problem for me at the time because I have pullout drive drawers on my PC which is still alive right now as my secondary machine.


View attachment 25227
Still best way to keep disks in, I had a 3 bay for 3,5" but took it out to save space as now I have only one 3.5". Two 2.5" SSDs are still in removable trey which takes very little space. Now I back up to that 3.5" HDD and than copy .mrimg file to USB 3.1 dock to another HDD. nether of those jobs makes enough strain on the system so I can keep on working without interruption.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    W10 and Insider Dev.+ Linux Mint
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home brewed
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 9 7900x
    Motherboard
    ASROCK b650 PRO RS
    Memory
    2x8GB Kingston 6000MHz, Cl 32 @ 6200MHz Cl30
    Graphics Card(s)
    Gigabyte Rx 6600XT Gaming OC 8G Pro
    Sound Card
    MB, Realtek Ac1220p
    Monitor(s) Displays
    3 x 27"
    Screen Resolution
    1080p
    Hard Drives
    Kingston KC3000. 1TBSamsung 970 evo Plus 500GB, Crucial P1 NVMe 1TB, Lexar NVMe 2 TB, Silicon Power M.2 SATA 500GB
    PSU
    Seasonic 750W
    Case
    Custom Raidmax
    Cooling
    Arctic Liquid Freezer III 360mm
    Internet Speed
    20/19 mbps
Still best way to keep disks in, I had a 3 bay for 3,5" but took it out to save space as now I have only one 3.5". Two 2.5" SSDs are still in removable trey which takes very little space. Now I back up to that 3.5" HDD and than copy .mrimg file to USB 3.1 dock to another HDD. nether of those jobs makes enough strain on the system so I can keep on working without interruption.
Back in the day, updating or clean installing a preview OS while my main OS drive is also plugged in gives me a lot of boot up issue. And this was the easiest solution I came up with (no need to open the case) and got used to it.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 9 3900X
    Motherboard
    MSI MPG Gaming Edge Wifi (X570)
    Memory
    32GB Adata XPG DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS GTX 1070 8GB ROG
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG Ultrawide 34"
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440
    Hard Drives
    Main Boot Drive : 512GB Adata XPG RGB Gen3x4 NVMe M.2 SSD
    PSU
    EVGA 600 Watts Gold
    Case
    Deepcool Genome II
    Cooling
    Deepcool Fryzen
    Internet Speed
    1Gbps
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    "Moderna"
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i7-4790K
    Motherboard
    ASRock Xtreme6 Z97
    Memory
    16GB Corsair Vengeance Pro
    Graphics card(s)
    MSI R9 290
    Monitor(s) Displays
    LG Ultrawide 34"
    Screen Resolution
    3440x1440
    Hard Drives
    Samsung M.2
    PSU
    Thermaltake 475 Watts 80 Bronze
    Case
    Thermaltake Commander I Snow Edition
    Cooling
    Deep Cool Archer Air Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech G402
    Keyboard
    Armageddon MKA-5R RGB-Hornet
    Internet Speed
    1Gbps
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Moderna :)

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