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Recovery Software (Read 13734 times)
Bob C
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Recovery Software
Mar 4th, 2008 at 3:00pm
 
I am looking for a recovery software that is similar to what some of the large oems use.  I want to creat a partition and put an image on it and if a user blows out the c: drive they could hit some magic keys and be prompted to recover an image from a hidden partition.  Any suggestions are appreciated.
 
 
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #1 - Mar 4th, 2008 at 5:50pm
 
did you vote today?
 
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NightOwl
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #2 - Mar 5th, 2008 at 1:43am
 
Bob

You need to consider a program that allows for *command line* control--if on a special bootable recovery partition--probably a DOS based program--both Brian and I have been experimenting with this type of setup--see here:  Unattended image restore

If you want the option to run a restore from an initial boot menu--you would probably have to set up a *boot manager* that give you the option to select a *Restore Utility Partition* as an option.  Dan Goodell ( Understanding MultiBooting and Booting Windows from an Extended Partition ) speaks highly of XOSL - Boot Manager by Geurt Vos.

(When I tested Dan Goodell's link--it was down--hopefully it will be back up soon!)

If you want a *Ghost* solution--the only product that is DOS based is the Ghost Solution Suite 2.0--primarily an enterprise product--minimum licence is 5.  TeraByte's *Image for DOS* is what Brian is using.

 

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Nigel Bree
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #3 - Mar 5th, 2008 at 2:01am
 
With Ghost Solution Suite, there are different kinds of licenses - with GSS versions there is also a kit containing a special build of just Ghost for OEM use. That kit lets you build rebranded, restore-only Ghost binaries for which vastly cheaper licenses are available than for managed console clients or for full standalone Ghost.

The OEM restore licenses aren't for sale through the regular websites, since the main people who build these things are computer manufacturers and large corporates who are at really REALLY large volumes where deals are individually priced. So, it's handled through corporate sales.

The kit doesn't contain all the machinery for things like enabling a recovery partition though; that generally needs things (special custom MBRs with custom branding or custom BIOS firmware) that the people buying the kit are better positioned than we are to supply and support.
 
 
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Bob C
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #4 - Mar 5th, 2008 at 7:35am
 
Currently using ghost 2003 and just bought a bunch of liscenses for GSS.   Using USB devices to recover devices broken in the the field and looking for ways to do it easier.   Field units do not have connection via lan in most cases so corp management type software is not a choice.  Looking for stand alone type way to do this.  These devices do not have keyboards but.... can connect as needed... Ghosting with usb without having prompts is sometimes issue ... would like a quicker and less customer participation as possible.

And yes... I voted...
 
 
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Nigel Bree
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #5 - Mar 6th, 2008 at 2:04am
 
Bob C wrote on Mar 5th, 2008 at 7:35am:
Currently using ghost 2003 and just bought a bunch of liscenses for GSS.

Then look in your GSS product CD (or the equivalent if you get it via download) for the OEM Recovery Kit folder (I forget what it's called and I don't have any distribution media with me at home). The documentation for the recovery kit covers some extra utilities in it, including a piece called SRFixMBR that may help.

The pieces in the recovery kit aren't intended for regular GSS users (the documentation is really written for OEMs) and aren't part of the supported GSS base product, but it's there if you want to give it a try.
 
 
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Bob C
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #6 - Mar 18th, 2008 at 12:06pm
 
I've been trying to use SRFixMBR with out any luck.  I am using win2000 and everything I try SRFixMBR in the command line with any switch I get nothing.  Anyone had any workings with this program?
 
 
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Nigel Bree
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #7 - Mar 18th, 2008 at 6:21pm
 
Bob C wrote on Mar 18th, 2008 at 12:06pm:
I am using win2000 and everything I try SRFixMBR in the command line with any switch I get nothing

Something to look out for is that the default XML configuration file supplied in the "Recovery Kit" folder on the CD needs at least some customization - if you run SRFixMBR without editing that file, it'll silently choke (and write out a rather cryptic error to SRFixMBR.txt) which points out that there's an invalid entity tag at the bottom of the file (&use-case-restore-mbr;)

The whole design of that XML file is pretty silly, as you might expect when you see meaningless nonsense phrases like "use case" turn up. Like I said, this isn't meant for regular folks to use.

Pretty much the only part of the whole mess that matters is the <restore-mbr> tag, since most of the rest of the XML file is there only for localization into non-English languages. For some reason unknown to me, the example XML file in the folder doesn't have that section present at all.

To make one, go to the manual where the heading says "Example SRFixMBR.xml", it has an example just of the <restore-mbr> tag part, and basically that's the bit you need to copy and paste into the basic SRFixMBR.xml that in the recovery kit folder.

You paste that section with the example <restore-mbr> tag into the place where the junk "&use-case-restore-mbr;" bit which is choking the XML parser.

From there on you should have something that can be used and can twiddle the settings. It's best to do this in a VMWare VM when you're experimenting though, since if you misconfigure things there's no safety net.
 
 
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Bob C
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #8 - Mar 24th, 2008 at 8:14am
 
Thanks will give this a shot.  Hope to get some sort of message other than a screen flash and an cryptic error message.

Thanks again
 
 
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Bob C
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #9 - Mar 25th, 2008 at 2:57pm
 
I've been beating my head now for two days trying to figure this out.  I created two partistions and one has my main program and the other is my recovery area.  The recovery area I just formatted and system and I can't seem to get the booting process to boot to it.  I keep getting bad command.com.    I can see the c: and d: drive .. I've tried to make the recovery partition reboot and retry with no luck...  then try to make the original partition active.   I have had luck going to my Win2000 area but every time I try to hit the F3 key for recovery I can't hit the second partition.... any suggestions appreciated... btw I am trying bootit NG for just to hope I can learn something and it works fine.  Just can't seem to get both partitions to be reconized by the srfixmbr
 
 
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Brian
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #10 - Mar 26th, 2008 at 6:36pm
 
Bob C wrote on Mar 4th, 2008 at 3:00pm:
I am looking for a recovery software that is similar to what some of the large oems use.I want to creat a partition and put an image on it and if a user blows out the c: drive they could hit some magic keys and be prompted to recover an image from a hidden partition.

Bob,

Are you still interested in doing this? Ghost or other software?

PS I think you are. I probably misunderstood and thought you had gone off on a tangent.
 
 
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K Singh
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #11 - May 16th, 2008 at 6:28am
 
Hi
Even i want the same thing to be implemented.

I have 250GB HDD. The proposed structure is as follows with recovery partition:-
1. First partition with OS:- 50GB - NTFS
2. Second partition for data: 90GB - NTFS
3. Third partition for data: 90 - NTFS
4. Fourth Hidden Recovery partition: 20GB -NTFS/FAT32(would like opnion here)

I have these questions, hope someone can answer:-
Ques 1: How do i create partition for such configuration. If i use windows XP setup CD i allocates drive names for all the partitions. I dont want recovery partition to be visible under Windows. Do i need specific tool which will do so.

Comment: If i am able to make the above config using some tool, I can then use Ghost PE to create the ghost image on that recovery partition by booting from the CD.

Ques 2:- Now i want to use the Bootmenu option for F11. What changes required in SRFixMBR.xml for the same.

Ques 3:- Assuming i am able to make a boot menu at start, what all files do i need to copy to the recovery partition so that it boots and starts the GhostOEM.exe which can be found in recovery kit?

I have been able to custom ghostoem.exe with all the custom messages. All i am struggling is with fixing boot message and starting the recovery process from the hiddin partition.

Any help will be highly appreciated.
 
 
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K Singh
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #12 - May 18th, 2008 at 10:21am
 
I have implemented the method using the tools.. I shall shortly update it for the community..

Before that, would like to know is it a good idea to run 16-bit app on dual core processor. Because the ghost prog is 16-bit. Else i need to put the WinPe environment on harddisk.
 
 
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Nigel Bree
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #13 - May 18th, 2008 at 4:03pm
 
Quote:
Because the ghost prog is 16-bit

Actually, it isn't. It's been a 32-bit DOS application since, from memory, version 5.

The DOS extender Ghost runs on isn't aware of dual-core processors, but that just means that it runs on only one of the cores and nothing bad happens. Dual-core processors contain an emulation of hardware that was used in multiprocessor chipsets, and when booting only one of the processors/cores starts out active until the operating system detects and enables the other ones.
 
 
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K Singh
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Re: Recovery Software
Reply #14 - May 19th, 2008 at 1:44am
 
Hi  Nigel

Thanks for replying. The Ghost.exe i am talking here is the ghostoem.exe which is found in the recovery kit folder and can be run using bootable floppy. The manual of the recovery kit says its DOS-16 or 32 i am not sure.

The reason i raised this question, i tried running ghost in two scenarios:-
1. I used the DOS based bootable floppy to recover a partition. The Ghost.exe performed the operation but was very slow in terms of creating backup and then restoring.
2. The Ghost-32bit windows version was used to create backup and recover using Winpe environment. The result was considerably faster backup and recovery.

So that is where i wanted the clarification. Because DOS based version  of Ghost is run from command prompt of win98SE bootable floppy image which is 16 bit DOS(I think so, correct me if i am wrong.)

Regards,
K Singh.




Quote:
Quote:
Because the ghost prog is 16-bit

Actually, it isn't. It's been a 32-bit DOS application since, from memory, version 5.

The DOS extender Ghost runs on isn't aware of dual-core processors, but that just means that it runs on only one of the cores and nothing bad happens. Dual-core processors contain an emulation of hardware that was used in multiprocessor chipsets, and when booting only one of the processors/cores starts out active until the operating system detects and enables the other ones.

 
 
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