What is a system image?
A system image is an exact copy of a drive. By default, a system image includes the drives required for Windows to run. It also includes Windows and your system settings, programs and files. You can use a system image to restore the contents of your computer if your hard disk or computer ever stops working. When you restore your computer from a system image, it’s a complete restoration - you can not choose individual items to restore, and all of your current programs, system settings, and files are replaced with the contents of your system image.
Is it possibleto restore Windows system imageto smaller drive?
Q: “I created a Windows 7 system image of a 500 GB partition with only 80 GB used. I want to change that system to a new 160 GB SSD on the notebook. Is it possible to restore a system image to a smaller drive?”
Many Windows users may have the same confusion similar with the questions above. Because most of backup tools do not support restoring system image to a smaller hard drive. They are only helpful in the capacity of the objective drive is equal to or larger than the original hard drive. Fortunately, AOMEI Backupper can help you solve this problem.
How to restore Windows system image to smaller drive?
If the worst happens and you actually need to use the system image you created, it’s easy to do if you can get into the operating system. If you can not boot into Windows, you can restore an image by using a repair disc. So we now need consider which tool offer this service. It is a surprise for users that AOMEI Backupper can not only restore Windows system image to smaller drive. It can also create a bootable environment which can replace a repair disc.
Now we suppose that you have already backed up system to your NAS and created a system repair disc. And I will show you the detail of Windows system image restore to smaller drive.
Step1. Download AOMEI Backupper, install and Launch it.
Step2. Open your notebook that has the smaller disk. Because it does not have an operating system, you need set it to boot from network in BIOS. Since AOMEI PXE Boot Tool is providing this service, the notebook will enter AOMEI Windows PE, there AOMEI Backupper is standby. Select Restore in the main interface, then check System Restore box.
Step3. Click the Path to select the system image file.
Step4. AOMEI Backupper will ask you whether you are going to do this system restore, click Yes to continue. And then click Next to begin the restore.
Step5. Select a backup time point to restore, you will see an Operation Summary which indicates the operation that will be executed.
Step6. When the restoration is done, disconnect the service provided by AOMEI PXE Boot Tool. When you start your notebook next time, it will be normally booted and contains a same system with the original system.
●You can also use AOMEI Backupper to backup computer to external hard drive.
● Make sure your original computer and the notebook is on the same network, so that you can use AOMEI PXE Boot Tool.