Anyone who has lost data in the past knows the pain of recovering or even worse losing data forever. Data loss might happen due to many reasons. Most common causes being hard disk wear out, system anomalies, and malware attack. In such scenarios, backup data in any form is the quick and easy rescuer.
One such tool that will take care of your backup needs is O&O DiskImage. While not labelled as a backup program, and there is a good reason to it, the program specializes in making precise images of your hard disks or partitions and allows users to easily restore the system to the original state when disaster strikes.
O&O DiskImage is available in three different editions Professional, Workstation, and Server. This article only covers the professional edition that is targeted at home users and can backup individual drives. It has no network capabilities, therefore cannot be used to backup network drives. However, it can save local backups to a network location.
The program prompts the user to check for new version of the product during installation. We recommend that you do not go through with the update check, as the promotional license provided by the offer will only work with version 11 of O&O DiskImage Professional. The latest version of O&O DiskImage Professional is 14. However, the old version is competent enough for users who are looking to make just disk images and backup files.
Installation and Setup
The installation procedure is straightforward. Users are provided three different options: Typical (installs common features), Complete (all features) and Custom (allows you to choose the features). We recommend going through with the complete installation mode to get all the features that the program offers. After selecting the feature set, users have to set the installation location. The default location is the usual “Program Files” folder, but users can set it to any location of their liking. The setup is lightweight (around 60 MB) and installs in a minute or two.
On first start, the program will ask you to continue with a 30-days trial or activate by entering registration code. You can continue to use the trial without any limitations or read about the activation procedure in detail in the section here.
The interface provides quick options to get end users started. The main windows displays tiles to “Start drive imaging”, “Start file backup”, “Create image of changes (Incremental / Differential), and “Start Restoration”.
Each of these tasks is broken down in small steps so end users can take the appropriate actions while going through all the options. In case of drive imaging, end users need to select the hard disk or particular drive they want to image, set target location, and hit start to perform the procedure.
O&O DiskImage compresses all images by default, thus saving space. Compression methods available include LZNT1 and BZIP2, the former is used by default due to its performance, but the latter is compatible with most third party compression programs like WinZip.
Imaging options allows users to switch imaging method between used, forensic, or direct forensic. By default the “Used” method is selected where the program makes an image of just the used sectors of the drive, “Forensic” method includes both used and unused sectors and “Direct Forensic” includes the aforementioned two, and encrypted sectors. In addition, images can be split to predefined sizes, and encrypted with a password. The program offers three levels of encryption: AES 128, AES 192 and AES 256. VHD images can also be directly created now. Previously, this was not possible, as the program had to convert the image.
Additional options dialog can be used to add comments, shutdown, restart or play sound when task is completed, and convert the image to VHD format.
Virtualization tools like VMWare and Virtual Box support VHD images, so end users can readily use them for virtualization. Windows 10 also natively supports VHD images and users can mount them by just double clicking on the image file.
When it comes to file backup, users can select particular files, folders and drives for backup. File backups are saved in different format (OBK), and the options panel offer the same settings previously encountered during the imaging procedure.
In addition to taking complete images and backups, the programs also supports incremental and differential imaging. Incremental image saves the changes made since the last image while differential image on the other hand compares the data from the first complete image and saves the current changes.
Scheduling image backup or file backup is supported, which is accompanied by a wizard that is identical to windows task scheduler.
Restoration procedure is fairly straightforward. Image to be restored has to be selected, and then the program displays the contents of the image. Users can choose to restore the entire content or choose particular files or folders. Files can be restored to the original source by using the substitute original files option.
When it comes to system drives, previously users were limited to restoring images to identical hardware. However, now O&O DiskImage features a new technology labelled as M.I.R (Machine Independent Restoration) that allows restoration of system images on dissimilar hardware.
Grab Your Free License
O&O DiskImage Professional has a retail price of $49.95, but you can now grab a license code of the older version 11 free of charge. Visit the Offer Page and register with your email address.
Please note that you have to confirm your email address before you receive the free registration key.
You should receive an email from [email protected] with your confirmation link. After successful confirmation, you will receive another mail with your free serial number and download link. Alternatively, you can download the setup using the links provided below.
Download O&O DiskImage 11 Professional
32-bit: OODiskImage11ProfessionalEnu.exe [48MB]
64-bit: OODiskImage11Professional64Enu.exe [55MB]
On first run, an activation wizard will pop up. Select “Enter your registration code”
Enter the email address (that you have previously used on the offer page) in the name and company details field and paste the serial number that was sent to your email address.
Keep hitting “Next” to complete the activation process.