…because when you do and your disc inevitably crashes, you just go, buy a new one, perform a quick restore and are ready to go.
About a month ago my 64 GB OCZ Vertex 2 crashed – when I plugged it in another computer, I was able to download some data off it, but eventually hung. Before having it RMAed I gave a shot reformatting the drive and it started working again. After a fresh install of Windows and common programs, I started looking for a backup software, that will be able to create image of whole drive from within Windows.
Quick google search pointed to Macrium Reflect (free edition). It can also schedule creation of image, so I set it up to do daily backup. Keeping two most recent images was accomplished by a small PHP script, which deleted the older images.
After a month the drive finally crashed for good – controller wasn’t able to see the disc at all. I went to the shop, RMAed the drive, immediately bought a new one (Intel 520 this time, as it comes with 5-year warranty) and put it in my computer. Then came the restoring part, which was rather tricky. Macrium Reflect is able to create restore CD, so I tried to create bootable USB flash drive. Unfortunately my computer isn’t able to boot from USB flash drive (or more likely it is, but I wasn’t able to find how to set it up – selecting USB HDD in the Boot Menu didn’t work). The next step was to burn the actual CD. All worked, restore software booted, and I was able to locate file with backup, select the partition to restore to and click „Proceed“ (or Finish, or whatever the button said). The the GUI disappeared and I was presented with white-on-black console prompt, with no activity whatsoever.
The only chance I had was to create Windows PE bootable CD with Macrium Reflect software. After downloading 1.7 GB package it started burning the CD. After this was done, I put the CD in my computer, started Windows PE, clicked Restore and it worked like a charm. 15 minutes later I was able to boot from the SSD drive and find the computer in 2-days-ago state, working perfectly.