Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Windows 7 Ultimate question...

  1. #1
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073

    Windows 7 Ultimate question...

    Does anyone know how to clone your "C" drive? I have been having problems with my "C" drive and I want to be able to clone it to an external hard drive. I have tried several software packages that claim to be able to do this, but they don't work. All I want to do is to clone my existing hard drive (my "C" drive) to this external hard drive so that if I screw up my existing "C" drive, I will have a second drive that can be used to restore my "C" drive. Is it possible to clone your "C" drive while it's in operation? I mean, both of the software programs that I tried to use said that they could clone my "C" drive to another drive, but whenever I tried to do that, they said that the cloning process had failed.

    So far I have tried using Acronis True Image, and after 5 hours of wasting my time trying to get it to clone my "C" drive, I removed the software and asked for my money back. I just tried using Macrium Reflect and got the same results.(at least it was free). Is it possible to clone your hard drive while you are using it, or is that an impossible task?

  2. #2
    Wields limited power
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    The Axiom hovering over the Netherlands
    Posts
    13,076
    Control Panel -> Back and Restore, Create System Image

    You will need to attach an external disk/drive to system to place the image on, preferably one with LESS then 2TB (tera yes) of total space. Win7 backup does not like >2Tb drives. Once backup is made, follow prompt to burn a system repair disk. You can boot from that disk and restore system with it. To any disk needed.

    I know you've returned Acronis already, but generally speaking I would make an offline backup with that. That is, let it create a boot disk for you and boot from it, then create image. ShadowProtect can do this online (uses same system Microsoft uses, shadowimages) but it is a bit expensive for what sounds like a one time backup situation.

  3. #3
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    Frans, I couldn't get any of the Acronis software packages to work. I tried several of their software packages and I kept getting error messages saying that the software was unable to complete the task. Right now, I am using the freeware program EaseUS Todo backup software, and it seems to be doing the job, so hopefully this will solve my problem.

    I wanted to be able to make a copy of my "C" drive....a copy that worked as I have been having problems booting up. I don't know what happened to my "C" drive, but whenever I try to start up my computer, I have problems....problems ranging from not getting past the "Starting Windows" screen, to problems with my computer re-booting itself when the start up process is almost complete. I am so glad that I have RollBackRX on my computer as that allows me to roll back my computer to before all of this stuff started. I have rolled back my computer to 10 days ago which is before all of this stuff started happening. I am now cloning my hard drive (using the EaseUs software), so hopefully when I have a copy of my "C" drive on my new external drive, I can re-run my Windows 7 disk over top of my existing installation and see if that fixes my boot up problems. If I screw up my existing Windows OS, then I will have a copy of it on my external hard drive that I can use to set things straight. It would be a major undertaking if I had to re-install all of my software programs, which is what I'd need to do if I were to re-install my Windows 7 operating system.

    Anyway, thanks for the info.

  4. #4
    Wields limited power
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    The Axiom hovering over the Netherlands
    Posts
    13,076
    A free hot-clone program? I suppose it could be ok. Anyway you don't need a 3rd party program actually, your win7 has cloning build-in as described above

    p.s. do make sure you create a rescue disk from which you can boot and run whatever backup program you choose to use!

  5. #5
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    After checking out the Microsoft website, it seems that many people are having similar problems with Windows 7, so cloning my "C" drive isn't going to remedy that. The problem is with Windows 7, so there doesn't seem to be much that I can do to resolve this issue. You'd think that Microsoft would be trying to find a solution for the problem, but I guess they don't care....they've already made their money from Windows 7, so why bother?

    In case anyone else is having this problem with Windows 7, here is what it does. Sometimes when I start up the computer, it freezes up when I get the "Starting Windows" screen. Other times, the computer seems to boot up okay....the desktop has all of the icons and everything seems okay....until I try to use the mouse. The mouse doesn't work....as does any of the keyboard keys....the computer is locked up and nothing I do works, so I have to do a hard shutdown by pressing the on/off button, but even with that, I normally have to press and hold the on/off button for 5 seconds before the computer shuts down, but when it is locked up, I just need to briefly push the on/off button and it shuts down immediately.

    Other times when the computer is booting up, halfway through the bootup process, the computer restarts itself for no apparent reason. What's weird is that, through all of these freeze ups and restarts, once the computer is re-booted a second time, it works perfectly. I'm at a loss.....it's obviously a Windows 7 problem, and on my computer, it only started happening two weeks ago, and I've had this computer for 4 years.
    Last edited by Dekoda; 29th May 2014 at 01:05 AM.

  6. #6
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    Okay, so after numerous lockups and Windows rebooting itself, I decided to try an old program that I had but never used. I first checked to see if there were any newer versions of the software, which there was, so I installed the newer version and ran it. It's a free program called Free Window Registry Repair, and so far, it has solved the problem. The most times I booted up with no problems was 3, but after running this repair program, I have booted up over 8 times with no problems, so, so far, so good.

  7. #7
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    Well, the registry repair software didn't fix the problem, so now I'm hoping to pick the brains of the knowledgeable people here.

    After having the same problems with my computer, I decided to reinstall Windows 7 again using the restore disks that I created when I first got this computer. This wipes out everything on the hard drive and sets the computer back to they way it was when it left the factory. I have done this several times now and I still have the same problems.

    Sometimes when I boot up the computer, it will freeze up, so I have to do a hard shutdown to get out of the freeze. Other times, the computer will boot up, then suddenly, the screen gets messed up....as if the icons were painted on and someone took a wide paint brush and wiped it across the screen, making a bunch of colored streaks. Other times, the computer will boot up, then for no apparent reason, it abruptly shuts off, then restarts itself.

    I have no clue as to what would cause this. I thought it might be software related, but after reinstalling Windows, there is no software on the computer except what came from the factory, and that worked for over 3 years with no problem.

    I thought that it might be hardware related, but if that's the case, then how could a hardware problem shut down the computer and restart it? Not to mention that once the computer restarts, either by restarting itself, or if I have to do a hard shut down and restart it, once the computer has booted up, it works fine for hours. If it was a hardware problem, then the computer wouldn't boot up okay the second time.

    Does anyone have any thoughts on this?

    I just remembered a few things....the computer seems to only have these problems when I boot up the computer. If the computer is already booted up, and I need to restart the computer (like if a software installation requires a re-boot), the computer boots up okay. That made me wonder what stays on when you reboot the computer, that goes off when you shut down the computer. The only two things I can think of would be the power supply and the hard drive.

    With a Dell computer, it comes with PC Doctor which will run a series of tests on your computer. I just did one of those tests at the Dell website, and it said that my computer was okay. The tests run a variety of tests on the hard drives to push them to their limit, and they seemed to work okay. The one thing that PC Doctor doesn't test is the power supply, so I'm wondering....can the power supply cause my problems? If so, then why does it only cause problems when the computer boots up, but works fine after a reboot and works fine all day after the reboot?

    Oh, and one other thing...my keyboard is an X-Armor mechanical, back lit keyboard. Each key has an LED under it to light up each individual key. When you boot up the computer, the back lights are turned off. To turn them on, you have to hold down the Fn (function) button, then press the 8 key on the keypad to increase the brightness, or press the 2 key to lower the brightness. This is software controlled, so there isn't a switch that you can leave on to maintain the brightness level that you want. Every time you boot up the computer, you have to again set the brightness level that you want. Now if the computer does a refresh, like if your desktop icons suddenly blink and they are just generic boxes, then they begin to convert back to the proper icon, that refresh will also reset the keyboard lights to off. Since I have had these problems, the keyboard is frequently turning off....as if something is causing a momentary refresh or break of some kind.
    Last edited by Dekoda; 12th August 2014 at 04:00 PM.

  8. #8
    Wields limited power
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    The Axiom hovering over the Netherlands
    Posts
    13,076
    Sounds like a power-supply which JUST can't provide the full starting power from cold-start. Power supplies can have problems which only occur on cold-start but a reset works fine for them. Hardware can easily crash the system, videocards are next in line as suspect. Do you have a separate videocard? (it's not a laptop with a specific nvidia card now is it? they had a batch which severely overheated)

    The difference between psu and videocard issues is that the latter usually appear after the pc has been for some time (to get hot) and the psu issues appear at startup.

    The event-viewer might tell you why the system restarts *if* windows made it do that. If a power-supply fails there won't be anything in there.

  9. #9
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,122
    Quote Originally Posted by Frans View Post
    Sounds like a power-supply which JUST can't provide the full starting power from cold-start. Power supplies can have problems which only occur on cold-start but a reset works fine for them. Hardware can easily crash the system, videocards are next in line as suspect. Do you have a separate videocard? (it's not a laptop with a specific nvidia card now is it? they had a batch which severely overheated)

    The difference between psu and videocard issues is that the latter usually appear after the pc has been for some time (to get hot) and the psu issues appear at startup.

    The event-viewer might tell you why the system restarts *if* windows made it do that. If a power-supply fails there won't be anything in there.
    That sounds spot-on, Frans. Outside of that I would venture to suggest it's a hard drive going bad, as when a hard drive motor begins to fail or becomes intermittent it could cause an operating system to freeze up. But by what you're describing, Dekoda, I too would be inclined to suspect a faulty power supply that might be developing some internal, electrical noise or AC ripple. A good way to confirm that is to find someone with a computer power supply tester (or you can purchase one on your own fairly inexpensively) and test the power supply with it if you happen to be electro-mechanically inclined.

    You say the computer is a few years old? have you had the computer power cord plugged into a UPS or directly into an outlet? Over time just the occasional power 'spike' that is common on most any electrical power service line can take its toll on electronics, let alone the occasion bolt of lightning from an electrical storm in your area, and although power strips offer 'some' protection from spikes and strikes that snake their way through your power line and into your expensive electronics, UPS's offer much better protection because their internal batteries help smooth out the ripples and spikes to a much safer level. All the more reason I would suspect a power supply going weak, especially if it's three years or older. Just a suggestion, if you do opt to replace the power supply go for a Cooler Master, 550 watt or greater. That's all I use in all of my computer builds these days. They run so much quieter and more stable, and by all means if you haven't already, opt for a UPS of sorts so as to help protect and prolong the life of your gear.

  10. #10
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    I figured I'd try a new power supply and see if that happens. I guess they are all the same size, so I ordered a 650 watt supply. I hope this power supply works. It says that it's a single rail....I don't know what that means. I'm hoping that it's not the motherboard....I've never changed out a motherboard, although I don't think it's that hard to do. It's just that, this is my only computer, and if I tear it apart, then need to order something, I have no way to get on the internet to order it. I figure, I'll try one component at a time....the power supply, and if that's not the problem, another hard drive, then a video card. If it's none of those, then I guess the motherboard is last.

    I don't want to think about buying another computer because this computer is a really nice one, plus it's not that old. I always buy more computer than I need when I buy a computer, that way, in the future, I'll have enough computer to do whatever I need. This computer has the Core i7 990X six core processor chip set running at 3.47 Ghz, 24 GB of 1333 Mhz RAM (I wanted the 1600 Mhz or the 2000 Mhz RAM, but Dell didn't offer it), two hard drives (1 TB and 2TB), two DVD burners, 10 USB ports, an ATI Radeon 5800 series video card, a Creative SB X-Fi sound card and a memory card reader.

    Also, I always use a UPS because, when I got my first computer, the power to my house would frequently go off. Now, 35 years later, we hardly ever lose power, but I like the peace of mind a UPS gives me. Funny, but as I just typed this, power blipped off for a fraction of a second.

  11. #11
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,122
    You chose a good power supply. 650 watts is perfect.

    Also sounds like you have quite a capable machine there, as you described it. Your computer likely has the muscle you'd need to do video editing and even get into 3D stuff if you wanted.

    The CPU in my biggest computer here is based on an Intel i7, 4770 @3.4 Ghz and I only have 16Gm RAM plugged into the motherboard here. My video cards are an nVidia 650 plus I have an additional nVidia 450 in there (the motherboard has two PCIE slots. Eventually I might go with a pair of nVidia 760 cards should I feel the need for faster rendering or more muscle for doing special effects and 3D animated graphics.

    But by all means please keep us updated on how that replacement of your computer's power supply goes once your order arrives.

  12. #12
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    After I ordered the power supple, I went ahead and ordered another hard drive. My present "C" drive is a 1 terabyte drive and I had been wanting to change it out for a 2 terabyte drive....not that I need one that big, but I always like to have extra space. Both the hard drive and the power supply came today, so I went ahead and installed that first. I've never installed a power supply before and seeing all of the cables coming out if it has me a bit worried, so before I attempt to install it, I'm going to wait a day or two to see if I still have the same problems. If I still have the same problems, then I guess I'll attempt the power supply....either that, or I'll take it to a computer repair place and let them do it for me. I'd prefer to do it myself (I like to tinker with things) since that would teach me a bit about installing power supplies. I've changed out hard drives, disk drives, video boards, etc., but they are easy to change out as compared to a power supply.

    It won't take very long for me to see if the problem was the hard drive, since whatever is causing the problems, also causes the LEDs in my back lit keyboard to turn off frequently. If my keyboard stays on, then it was the hard drive.

  13. #13
    Wields limited power
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    The Axiom hovering over the Netherlands
    Posts
    13,076
    That psu looks like it has separate cables (modular), select the ones you need only and you'll have less to tangle with Plugs have shapes to prevent issues, just don't force them in and you should be fine. Do look where the mainboard power connector is (often a two part plug, one smaller and one big, connected together). That mainboard connector is often at a difficult to reach spot so you want to connect it before screwing the psu itself into place.

    When connecting the mainboard connector do try to be gentle or get fingers under it's position on mainboard (counterforce, you don't want to push a lot on the mainboard itself).

    Just go slow, methodical and all should be well. Most connectors are suitable different depending on function, the only one to look for would be the small/extra-plug to mainboard which goes together with mainconnector for it. 'cos that extra plug looks a bit like a videocard (pci express) plug. Still.. go slow and you will notice it doesn't fit and figure out. Going slow iand patient is good

    Do wait with any work until at least several minutes after you have switched off power on psu unit itself, some power remains for a bit in system otherwise.

    PSU replacement isn't technically difficult, you won't easily break stuff. It's creating order in the wires and making it FIT (requires planning ahead usually). Cables for hdd/dvd usally have several connectors, figure out how you want to route those, take into account position of connector on cable and device ('up' or 'down' facing basically)

  14. #14
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    Okay, so the new power supply is installed. You'd think that they would make power supplies a lot easier to install. Instead of having a bunch of wires coming out of the back of the supply, with each set of wires ending in a connector, that instead, they would have connections on the back of the supply so that you could disconnect the cables from the back of the supply instead of having to trace out each cable to see where it went to and what type of connector the cable had. They could include a set of double ended cables so that if you existing power supply didn't have connectors on the back, you could just use the new power supply's included double ended cables.

    Anyway, I decided the easiest way for me was to unbolt the old supply and lay it on the computer's frame, bolt in the new supply, then one by one, trace out the wires coming from the old supply, disconnect the connector, find the same connector on the new supply and route that to the connection point and plug it in. I had to unbolt a few things to get to some of the connectors.(a fan and the CPU).

    So, the new supply is in use, so I'll see if that solves the problem. If it doesn't, then I'll have to take it to a repair shop and see if they can fix it. Even if replacing the hard drive and the power supply doesn't fix the problems, it wasn't money wasted on unneeded repairs, because I've been wanting to upgrade to a larger hard drive and a larger power supply.

  15. #15
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    Well, I'm keeping my fingers crossed, but so far, the computer is working great. It's been 12 days since I swapped out the power supply and hard drive, and so far, no problems. Before the swap out, I could only go for 1 or 2 days before the problems would occur, so going for 12 days, and still counting, makes me think that the problem has been solved. The only downside to this is having to re-install all of the software that I had before the hard drive change. Before the hard drive change, I did make backups to the backups to the backups of everything, so I am able to locate most of the programs and activation keys to the software.....as well as recovering all of the files I had.

    Now, it seems that my inkjet printer is crapping out on me. I have three printers connected to my computer, but this printer is the one that I use the most, since it prints on CDs and DVDs. If you have an Epson printer, which I think are good printers, and you have a problem, don't bother asking their tech support for help as it seems these idiots don't bother to read what your e-mail says to them to address your problem. It seems that they just use the typical response that they read from a pre-planned book that has no bearing on your problem. After several e-mails to them, I just gave up and ordered a new printer. I guess it'll take a while to get the new printer since Epson says that they are out of stock, and no one else seems to have it in stock either.(how can a manufacturer be out of stock? Don't they make more of their product when their supply gets low?)

  16. #16
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    5,122
    That's really cool that so far your computer has been going smoothly. When you say 12 days do you mean you keep the computer running 24/7?

    Actually, re-doing your operating system is a good thing to do, as I usually re-do mine about once a year. It keeps the OS fresh and it eliminates the possibility that any hidden malware would have a chance to lurk about.

    Epson printers usually last quite a few years, although I do find Canons tend to last quite a few years as well and they hold up to the test of time in an environment where they get used often.

  17. #17
    Posting Champion
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Earth (I think)
    Posts
    3,073
    Quote Originally Posted by wolfgangbuster29 View Post
    That's really cool that so far your computer has been going smoothly. When you say 12 days do you mean you keep the computer running 24/7?

    Actually, re-doing your operating system is a good thing to do, as I usually re-do mine about once a year. It keeps the OS fresh and it eliminates the possibility that any hidden malware would have a chance to lurk about.

    Epson printers usually last quite a few years, although I do find Canons tend to last quite a few years as well and they hold up to the test of time in an environment where they get used often.
    No, I turn off my computer every day when I am finished using it. I see no point in leaving it on when I am sleeping or doing something else.

    My Epson printer....well, I use this printer because it has the ability to print on CDs and DVDs, which is what I mainly use it for. When I take the time to make a good image to print on a CD or DVD, I expect it to print out great. When it doesn't, I get irritated, so I look to see what the problem is. In this case, the problem is the printer. I tried to order another printer from Epson, but they are out of stock. (How can a manufacturer be out of stock? Don't they keep tabs on their inventory? When they see that their inventory is getting low, don't they ramp up and manufacture more of that product?) Once they notify me that they have more of these printers in stock, I'm going to order two of them so that I have a spare on hand, in the event that one of them craps out again.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Subscribe to our e-mail newsletter

 
Sign up for the abby newsletter. Don't worry, we'll NEVER share your email address with anyone.