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I am responsible for the computers in three retail shops. They all run Windows 7. The Till machines need to be restorable very quickly if anything was to go wrong.

There aren no servers at each location and the PC's get turned off after the shops close, so the backup needs to occur either using WoL or during the day.

What I have in mind is full bare metal recovery, not file level backups.

Does anyone know what I can use?

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I would not use Windows Backup image feature...Look through this site for the number of problems people have using that feature. You could find yourself really scrambling, and not meeting this requirement: "restorable very quickly if anything was to go wrong".

If you want a product that works flawlessly virtually every time, since they are just regular PC's, buy Acronis True Image Home 2011. You will also need to buy the Acronis True Image Home 2011 Plus Pack for the bare metal restore features. Right now, there is a sale, and you can get three licenses of the base product for $80 plus $30 each for the plus pack.

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+ for Acronis.. – Moab Jul 2 '11 at 15:09
@Moab +1000 for Acronis...Not for my points, for them directly...Great software, and while nothing is guaranteed to work every time, this is close to perfect. – KCotreau Jul 2 '11 at 15:12
Awesome.. thanks a lot for this advice. I'll grab the free trial and test it out for myself. Cheers. – Samuurai Jul 2 '11 at 15:17
Be sure to make the Bootable Acronis Media after you install the software. – Moab Jul 2 '11 at 15:46

You can use the Windows 7 Back Up and Restore if the PCs have a spare hard drive or external hard drive. I use this in combination with Windows Home Server. Windows 7 Back Up and Restore will copy files as well as full disk images. You can restore using a Windows 7 Disk and pointing to the restore files.

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Great..! I'll take a look at it. Coming from a commercial environment, I thought I'd have to pay for it :) – Samuurai Jul 2 '11 at 11:52
W7 backup will only restore to a hard drive as large or larger, not smaller, it will not do incremental backups when imaging the entire drive. I would not rely on this limited feature set for business backups. Acronis is worth every penny, it does incremental Image backups which are much faster and reliable. – Moab Jul 2 '11 at 15:12

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