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not sure what to call this: a snapshot for ghosts? (Read 4207 times)
will von wizzlepig
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not sure what to call this: a snapshot for ghosts?
Nov 15th, 2010 at 3:03pm
 
I just had this idea, but I am not sure how to phrase it.

I imagine a PC with one hard drive. three partitions.

partition 1, whatever OS installation you want.
partition 2, a 'snapshot' partition
partition 3, data/storage/etc

So, you create partition 1, and now, not only can you ghost it, but while it is in use, all changes to it are actually made in the 'snapshot' partition, which means at the end of testing/working on it, to clean the slate, you'd just restart or some other similar nearly instant step. or you could save the state and pick a different snapshot to work from.

Does something like this exist?
 
 
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Brian
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Re: not sure what to call this: a snapshot for ghosts?
Reply #1 - Nov 15th, 2010 at 4:23pm
 
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will von wizzlepig

I think all of the hot imaging apps will do that. Create a base image and then do incrementals or differentials whenever you want another "snapshot".
 
 
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Dan Goodell
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Re: not sure what to call this: a snapshot for ghosts?
Reply #2 - Nov 15th, 2010 at 7:26pm
 
will von wizzlepig wrote on Nov 15th, 2010 at 3:03pm:
So, you create partition 1, [...] all changes to it are actually made in the 'snapshot' partition, which means at the end of testing/working on it, to clean the slate, you'd just restart or some other similar nearly instant step.


If you have XP or Vista, perhaps you might be interested in Microsoft's free SteadyState for that kind of purpose:

http://microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/sharedaccess

SteadyState was intended for public kiosks and computer labs, where it was desirable to revert to a consistent startup state at each boot.  When a system with SteadyState is booted, the system appears to operate normally except all changes are cached in a separate location.  When you shutdown or reboot, the changes are flushed so the system boots exactly like it did in the previous session.  When shutting down there is an override option if an administrator prefers to save the changes or update the baseline state.

SteadyState was available for XP and Vista, but will not be updated for Win7.  MS will be pulling the download link at the end of next month, so if anyone thinks he/she might want to try it out at some point in the future, you'd better download it now and save it.


 
 
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will von wizzlepig
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Re: not sure what to call this: a snapshot for ghosts?
Reply #3 - Nov 16th, 2010 at 12:06pm
 
oh, awesome!

steadystate. Well, that's pretty sweet. I am going to look into that for all of my family-tech-support issues. Grin

Also, it may actually fit in here at work, too.

Definitely going to look into hot imaging, that's a new term for me.

Thanks for all the info!
 
 
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Dan Goodell
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Re: not sure what to call this: a snapshot for ghosts?
Reply #4 - Nov 16th, 2010 at 1:24pm
 
SteadyState is the way to go when the norm at every boot will be reverting to a consistent C: state and keeping system changes will be the exception.  Partition images or snapshots are the way to go when the norm is to keep the changes and the exception is reverting to a baseline when things get messed up.

Keep in mind that SteadyState only monitors the "System" partition, so if you need to keep something you would simply move it to another partition before SteadyState flushes the changes.  I don't use SteadyState, but when I tried it I found it more convenient to move the users' "Favorites" and "My Documents" folders to another partition.

 
 
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