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Creating and Using a System Image to Restore Your Computer (Windows 8)

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This document pertains to all HP and Compaq computers with Windows 8.
A system image is a copy of all data on a drive volume. If the hard drive fails or critical software files become corrupted, such as when a computer virus infects a system, you can restore all of your files the system image to return the contents of your computer. By default, a system image includes the drive(s) required for Windows to run. It includes Windows, your system settings, programs, and files. When restoring a computer from a system image, you cannot choose individual items to restore. All of your current programs, system settings, and files are replaced with the contents of the system image.
NOTE:If you are only concerned about protecting your important files and files, use Windows Backup tool. Windows backup is faster and uses less space because it does not back up all data on the hard drive. For more information on using Windows Backup, see Backing Up Your Files in Windows 8 .
NOTE: If you are not using the latest version of Windows 8, some graphics and information in this document may vary. You can get the latest version from the Microsoft Store.

Creating a system image in Windows 8

Follow these steps to create a system image:
  1. At the Start screen, type File History to open the Search charm, and then select File History in the Search results.
    Figure 1: Search for File History
    Image of search results for File History
  2. Click System Image Backup .
    Figure 2: File History
    Image of the File History window
    Windows looks for available backup devices.
    Figure 3: Looking for backup devices
    Image of Create a System Image window
  3. Choose the location to save your system image, and then click Next .
    • On a hard disk
    • One or more DVDs
    Figure 4: Where do you want to save the backup?
    Image of Create a System Image window
    WARNING:Do not save the backup to the recovery partition: FACTORY_IMAGE or Recovery . Doing so corrupts the HP Recovery information.
  4. Select the drives you want to include in the backup, and then click Next .
    Figure 5: Which drives do you want to include in the backup?
    Image of Create a System Image window
    Confirm the settings, and then click Start backup .
    NOTE:Make sure that you have enough blank space on the external drive or enough blank DVDs to create the system image.
    NOTE:If you are using a Blu-Ray disc and error 0x80040154 opens, make sure you format the Blu-Ray disc before creating your backup.
    Figure 6: Confirm your backup settings
    Image of Create a System Image window
  5. Windows prepares to create the system image.
  6. If you are backing up to DVD, label and insert a blank DVD in the DVD recorder.
    Figure 7: Label and insert a blank disc
    Image of Create a system image window
  7. If you are backing up to DVD and a message displays requesting to format the DVD, choose to format the DVD.
    Figure 8: Formatting the media
    Image of Create a system image window
  8. Windows saves the system image.
    Figure 9: Windows is saving the backup
    Image of Create a system image window
  9. If using DVDs, when prompted, label and insert a blank DVD. Continue to follow the on-screen instructions until the image is complete. This might take from several minutes to several hours. Store the backup in a safe place.
  10. When the system image has been created, you are prompted to create a system repair disc. A system repair disc can be used to boot the computer in case of startup problems. For more information about system repair discs, refer to Creating and Using a Microsoft Recovery USB Drive (Windows 8) .
    Figure 10: Do you want to create a system repair disc?
    Image of Create a System Image window
  11. When the system image is complete, click Close .
    Figure 11: System image complete
    Image of Create a System Image window

Restoring the computer from a system image in Windows 8

Use the following steps to restore the computer from a system image:
  1. Insert the first system image disc into the disc drive, or connect the external hard drive containing the system image to the computer.
  2. Press the Windows + I key.
  3. Click the Power button at the bottom of Settings to open a list of power options.
  4. Hold the Shift key while you click Restart .
    Figure 12: Restart
    Image of Settings with Power, Restart selected
  5. On the Choose an option screen, click Troubleshoot .
    Figure 13: Choose an option
    The Choose an option screen, with Troubleshoot selected
  6. On the Troubleshoot screen, click Advanced Options .
    Figure 14: Troubleshoot
    The Troubleshoot screen, with Advanced options selected
  7. Click System Image Recovery .
    Figure 15: Advanced Options
    The Troubleshoot screen, with System Image Recovery selected
    The computer prepares the system image recovery.
  8. Click the user account, enter the account password, and then click Continue .
    NOTE:If your system image is saved on DVDs and Windows cannot find the system image file, remove the first disc in the set and insert the last disc in the set. Then click Retry . If your system image is saved on an external hard drive and Windows cannot find the system image file, disconnect and reconnect the drive. Then click Retry .
  9. Click Use the latest available system image (recommended) , and then click Next .
  10. On the Choose additional restore options page, click Next .
  11. On the confirmation page, click Finish . Then click Yes . Windows begins to restore the computer.
  12. If using DVDs, insert the requested disk when prompted, and then click OK . Follow the on-screen directions to completely restore the computer. This might take from a few minutes to a few hours. When Windows is finished restoring the computer, it automatically restarts.

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