System Image - Windows 10


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What size external drive do I need to create a system image of Windows 10.
Can this drive contain other data - for example, could I also use it for my back up and file history.

Thanks
 
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I use macrium reflect with a 6Tb external hard drive (for a 2Tb laptop drive) & also store my File History on the external hard drive.
My backups are around 600meg so I’d say you’d require a hard drive at least twice as large as the drive you’re backing up.
I gave up on the Windows own backup, in any case it’s being deprecated so will eventually be removed.
 
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It will depend on how much third party software you have installed. I am a moderate user of other software. My normal image of the Windows 10 OS is +/- 18gbs. I make the image on to a 128gb ssd. The image, made with, for example, Macrium, will copy everything you have in the OS installation, including your data.
 

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Generally most top tier backup software use a 2:1 compression schema so depending on the amount of used space you would need a drive of at least half that size to hold one image.
Generally I use a drive twice as large, since I maintain a Monday, Wednesday, Friday scheme and always keep three images at least.

I use multiple external drives as well as one internal and since I perform my backups manually and offline, I never keep them attached to the computer except during backup operations. Even the internal is disabled in device manager when not being used.

NOTE: IF you intended to use the native backup utility to create the system image, I do not believe that it uses any compression when creating the .vhd file, so the drive would need to be equal to the amount of used space at least.
 
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What size external drive do I need to create a system image of Windows 10.
Can this drive contain other data - for example, could I also use it for my back up and file history.

Thanks

IMHO you should have at least three times the size for backup as you have data. By default all your files are on drive C: unless you have moved your files to a different partition (like I did).
My backup strategy is to make a file backup every other day (on to three different external drives) and a system image every week (I keep the last three). So far I have not lost anything. For the system backup I am using Acronis True Image ( the 2011 Version as all my computer have MBR setup. For GPT setup I use Acronis 2014 - I have purchased both) I yet have to try Macrium reflect...

Backup is IMHO a concept that developes over time and everybody uses that concept that fits him best....
 
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Yes. An important consideration raised in the answers. My SSD is also an external - better for security! normally I have three images on it. The oldest is deleted when I feel confident that the current one is stable.
 

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