I have used Acronis True Image in our business office for several years…what a comfort to know I’ll never have to do a “Factory Restore” ever again! My software, printers, and all my settings and files are safe and secure.
A factory restore only takes about an hour to an hour and a half, but then you must do all the Windows updates, reinstall all optional software that you had installed such as: Printers, Financial software, Photo Enhancement software, and reinstall all your personal files, and pictures, …that is if your have them backed up! Then the hours of setting up all your preferences all over again! Some computer setups like this can take 6 - 8 hours to complete, and even then you’ll find settings that need adjusting.
The Acronis True Image program costs about $50 plus tax for the software, then you’ll need an external USB hard drive larger enough to match the size of your system to store an image of your hard drive on. A good portable hard drive costs between $75 to $150 depending on the size and brand.
Acronis offers the ability to both to create an image on an external drive, and to also create a recovery partition onboard so you can use F-11 when your PC fails to start-up! The recovery time is about 1 to 2 hours, but it brings you back to the last time you backed up the image. So never let more time pass than you are willing to retype, and reinstall. Thought to remember: “It’s not if your computer will go down…but when!