Ottawa PC Users' Group, Inc.
Drive Image Product
Review by Harald Freise
With 4.3GB hard disks selling in the mid $300.00 range
Im really tempted to get one for my overcrowded
system. The thing stopping me is that I dread is the
thought of reinstalling everything on the new drive.
Many, many hours of tweaking, downloading and installing
slipstream releases, new drivers and assorted other
necessary stuff to make my system run just right and the
way I want it to. With just a few simple steps, Drive
Image can copy your current hard drive to your new drive
while keeping every setting and byte of data safely in
When I mentioned that I was about to use Drive Image,
a colleague scoffed and said "why not use XCOPY, it
does the same thing." Well actually, no, it doesnt.
Drive Image includes PartitionMagics resize
technology so you can resize your partitions after
copying them to the destination drive. XCOPY can only
copy files from point A to Point B.
Going from a couple of 1.6 GB disks to a pair of 4.3GB
disks allows me several options that I didnt have
with "just copying the files over to the new drive."
I can choose to resize my partitions in several different
ways. I can have Drive Image automatically resize my
partitions to take up the remaining free space on the
destination drive. I could have Drive Image leave the
remaining free space unused or I could choose to resize
the partitions manually. I could also choose to do disk
to disk copies with file system error and bad sector
checking to prevent copy problems. Since Drive Image only
copies used sectors it would also be a lot faster on a
Drive Image is a DOS program with a straightforward
interface. The manual is very good in explaining the
steps necessary to prepare and replicate a drive or any
portion of it. If nothing else the appendices are worth
reading as they provide an excellent tutorial on hard
drives, formatting, file systems and understanding
partitions. There is some very good drive related
resource material and valuable troubleshooting tips there
Removable media is supported so that you could back up
your drive any to spanned Floppy, Jazz, Zip, network,
secondary or whatever drives youve got handy a the
time. It supports Win 95, NT, Win 3.x, DOS, OS/2
including Fat, Fat32, NTFS, and HPFS partition types.
According to the manual it even understands and to a
limited amount supports NetWare, Linux and UNIX.
How long would it take you to recreate an exact copy
of your computer, the way it is set up now, if you lost a
hard drive? Further, How long would it take to recreate
all the data that you have stored on your drive? Got any
fax or mail lists? Do you use a PIM? Taking risks with
your data is something you shouldnt do. You know
you should take the steps to protect it (like performing
regular backups) but doing so is often relegated to
"Ill do it next week" process.
With Drive Image, you could create and store a
compressed backup file of your entire hard drive, or just
the partitions you specify, to the storage medium of your
choice. The image file can be downloaded from the backup
source to completely restore your operating systems,
applications, and data exactly as it was when you first
copied the image. Think about it.
Included with Drive Image are two utilities that can
be helpful in finding and changing drive letters
assignments for partitions and CD-ROM drives. DriveMapper
changes one drive letter at a time to reflect a new drive
letter references. MagicMover helps in moving
applications from one partition to another with their
associated files and system settings.
Drive Image isnt for everyone but it sure does
make a job of creating disk images a lot easier than
without it. If you can use the services it can provide,
it is worth every penny.
Proprietary package from PowerQuest
Web site: http://www.powerquest.com
Copyright and Usage
Ottawa Personal Computer Users' Group (OPCUG), Inc.
3 Thatcher St.
The opinions expressed
in these reviews may not necessarily
represent the views of the OPCUG or its members.
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Page updated: 27-Feb-98