Macrium Support Forum

De-commisioning an old laptop (w/V6 Home 1 of 4-pack) and migrating to new laptop which will have V7 and I cannot risk any xxxx-ups over UK Bank holiday weekend

By oldMac - 23 August 2017 10:58 PM

I have read all of the Forum's installation sub-topic that appear relevant and am a little alarmed at the problems that people are having with upgrading - SO - what I want to do is:
1. Backup the old Laptop on Saturday morning using V6 as it's already installed - I want that laptop to continue to work (inc. Macrium just in case needed!) just in case the migration takes several days - I will only keep the New Laptop and the MR V6 backup.
2. Take a Macrium backup of the brand new Dell 7000 before the MS OoB 'experience' etc. - I will obviously need to use the V6 rescue USB flash drive for that
3. The brand new Dell 7000 will need a lengthy dose of privacy and security changes as it's Win10 - hopefully Creator's edition. I will also add a User partition to the SSD
4. I am a cautious old b... and I will want to (a) keep the new laptop offline to avoid intrusions by MS (b) back-up the system partition to an external drive REGULARLY during the install process and IDEALLY I would do an offline install of Reflect V7 but as the V6 license may still be active I will have to select one of the pack of 4 licenses that I haven't used yet but how do I tell which of the 4 V7 licenses that is? Anyone know the answer to that?
5. During all the usual pain of installing app's that might be 'new to Win10' I will want to have made 4-5 differential backups
6. Knowing that there will be snagging issues I am *thinking* there is an ideal opportunity for the viBoot in V7 as the new laptop is 16GB but not a large SSD (256) because I am *hoping* that I can launch the virtual PC of the *old* laptop from the MR V6 backup I made and copy "stuff" and crucially use application tools which provide 'export' utilities that I can then import into the new 'host' PC
Can anyone tell me if that is going to work - or at least if it should!!! Could I even use an image from MR V5?
As an aside - has anyone tried using viBoot from an MR image that is on a but external USB3 drive? If not then I would have to temporarily copy the .mrimg to the SSD.
7. Relax with a coffee or something stronger to celebrate a PC migration which has been hassle-free - I WISH!!!
Comments and any feedback - inc. resetting my expectations - v.v. welcome and appreciated in advance... OldB...
By oldMac - 23 August 2017 11:03 PM

Sorry to post a reply to my own post but I just a had a really perverse thought - can I de-install the MR V6 from within the viBoot version or do I have to wait for access to the old laptop? Again - how do I check which licenses are 'used' and does that give me any clue about the PC or even User account name?
By jphughan - 23 August 2017 11:11 PM

- For your initial backups of the new PC during your "buildout" phase, consider just using Reflect Free.  If you only need Full and Diff backups (and don't care about encryption at that stage), Reflect Free can create those types of backups.  Then there's no need to either use another license from your Home pack or remove your license from your current PC earlier than you might want to.  Then when you're satisfied with your migration, remove the license from the "outgoing" PC, uninstall Reflect Free on the new one, install a licensed copy in its place, and activate it using the key that you just freed up from your old PC.

- For viBoot, first off, if all you need to do is grab files, you could just mount the old laptop's image as a virtual disk on the new PC and extract whatever you need.  And even if you need to actually run the old PC's applications, why not just do that from the old laptop itself and copy any data over with a flash drive, via the network, etc?  I'm not clear why you're thinking about using viBoot just to facilitate a data migration if you'll still have the old laptop around, because that adds some complexity, as you're about to see.  viBoot's primary use case is to enable you to boot an image of a system when the original system is unbootable due to a hardware problem or natural disaster; another use case is just to validate that the image you captured is in fact bootable. But if for some reason you still feel you need viBoot, yes you can boot the image from your old PC on the new one as long as your new one has Win10 Pro, since viBoot requires Hyper-V, which only comes with Pro and Server versions of Windows. If you have Win10 Home, you'd have to buy an in-place upgrade to Pro from the Windows Store.  However, how easy it is to copy data back and forth will depend on the OS of the image you captured.  If it's a Pro version of Windows 8 or newer, you can use Hyper-V's "Enhanced Session Mode" to access it, which allows you to perform copy/paste operations between the VM and the host system, including for files.  If it's Windows 7 or earlier, or any non-Pro version of Windows, then you'd have to do something like set up a virtual network between the guest and the host and then enable file sharing on one or the other.  However, if you intend to keep that viBoot system running longer-term, you may want to consider capturing the old PC to a regular VHDX file (rather than a Reflect image file) and then just using regular Hyper-V rather than viBoot for performance and simplicity reasons. Additionally, if you intend to keep using Reflect within that VM, technically you'd need to keep a Reflect license bound to that VM. If not (or if the Free version will suffice for the VM at that point), then remove the license from the VM and optionally install Reflect Free instead.

- Storing the image on a USB 3.0 drive will slow down VM performance compared to having the image file on the internal SSD, but it will definitely work.  And as far as I know, V5 images will work just fine with viBoot, but I haven't verified that.

- You don't really need to capture an image of your new system before you go through the out-of-box experience.  You can just use Windows 10's "Reset This PC" feature to get back to that state if ever required.  But then again, if you have the storage I guess there's no real harm.

- In terms of seeing which Reflect licenses are used, Reflect will show you the license key that it's using, so you could just check your existing installations against the list of keys you have from your 4-pack.
By oldMac - 24 August 2017 12:43 PM

Thanks for the input yet again - good stimulating ideas and points of view - all of which I am very happy to adopt or debate...
Apologies for not stating - I forgot that it makes a difference - old = Win8.1 HomeP, new will be Win10 Pro so OK on viBoot. I have vowed only to use Pro versions of Win10 now that MS treats Home users as Guinea pigs!
Regarding "Reset this PC" - I may be wrong but would that work given the fact that the SSD would need to be wiped for Data Protection/privacy/security reasons.
My backup of the pre-OoB new PC could be with any of my MR Rescue USB versions but I will probably use my V6 licensed 1 of 4-pack as that is probably the license which will be used for V7 on that new PC.
I plan to use the V6 (1 of 4-pack) which is already installed on the old PC even though the product will need to be de-installed prior to using the replacement V7 license although I don't know which one of the new 4-pack that will be - hence my desire to be able to *query the V6 license usage alongside their equivalent V7 licenses* but I don't think I made that as clear as needed.
Great news if V6(+ I'll try V5 and even V3 if I can find one) backups can be used - that is brilliant as I have several friends who have App's which don't work beyond XP they still want to access but many won't have 'Pro' which might be a problem as you point out.
Presumably with later versions of Windows the backup needs to include the MS-created partitions preceding the C drive as well as any DATA partition if that is needed by App's.
Many *thanks for the warning* about the importance of the version of the *captured* system for using "enhanced" features of Hyper-V - I will need to write a few .BATs to create an internal (SMB?) network.
I don't actually want to use the V7 license that relates to the V6 installed on the old PC because I want to have a few days when neither of the licenses are 'at risk' *because of the danger of needing Macrium Support over the BH weekend* if I screw-up and need to use the V6 a 2nd time. I *ASSUME* I can do this because I haven't used all of the V6 4-pack but I would like to check which that is.
Again I should have made it clear - I will restore an 80+GB user partition as-is and would not dream of using viBoot to help me do that.
You have actually given me an ideal example where viBoot *would be useful* after the bulk data transfer - even if I don't try to uninstall the V6 MR license on the old from within viBoot - I could at least use it (viBoot) to login to the old PC and use Macrium to tell me what license key it is using. Similar examples are tools where data (say in QuickBooks) could be exported in CSV format but only if I can login to the old PC.
The old laptop will be *wiped* and re-cycled v.soon after the new one has been tested and confirmed as having all the required programs, data and as many setting as practically possible. That's why I asked about de-install MR from within viBoot.
I am encouraged by much of the input and esp. if V6 backups can be used for viBoot as it makes the migration between PCs a lot less risky if a user can effectively run their old PC for the odd few times they (or I!) have forgotten to capture and migrate... Thanks for your assistance... Any further comments/feedback still welcome by others too - especially if Macrium can help me manage my V6+7 licenses and upgrades...
By jphughan - 24 August 2017 3:15 PM

If the old PC is 8.1 Home, then you'd need to plan to create a virtual network within Hyper-V (or viBoot might have an interface for this too; I'm not sure), and then you'd connect the VM's virtual network interface to that network. Then if you created an Internal network instead of an External network, you'll also need to set static IP addresses on both the guest and the host's newly created virtual network interface, again depending on the network type you choose. If you created an External network, both the VM and host will just be on your regular home network (although some routers will have DHCP issues with this setup, in which case you may still want/need to create a static IP on the VM).  Either way, from there you can set up regular file sharing. I'm not sure what part of all that you planned to accomplish with BAT files.

If you do a clean install of Win10 Pro, then "Reset This PC" will return you to a default Win10 installation, not the manufacturer's out-of-box environment. But if you're going to do that, then why bother capturing an image of that setup anyway? The Reflect Rescue Media you use to capture that image makes absolutely no difference to the result, except that if you want to use encryption or something, you'd need a licensed version rather than the Free one.

As I said above, if you're planning to use these VMs for long-term access to apps, such as those that won't work beyond XP, you should consider capturing an image of the original system to a regular VHDX file and using regular Hyper-V, NOT capturing to a Reflect image file and using viBoot. You'll get better performance, more portability, and a simpler setup because you won't be dealing with an image file that has compression enabled, you won't have the performance and complexity overhead of a differencing disk (which viBoot would use to prevent anything being written to the original image file), and the VM would be more portable since obviously regular Hyper-V is more widely deployed than viBoot.

Yes, for a proper system image you should capture all partitions except any manually created Data partitions and possibly any OEM partitions. Reflect has an "Image the partitions necessary to boot Windows" option for that.
By oldMac - 24 August 2017 4:32 PM

I am exploring at the moment - I haven't even used viBoot yet although I have used VMs before - my 1st regular use was VM/370 in 1978? I am *hoping* to write a .BAT or two to create the connection + a simple 'NET USE'.
I will post back if that can make it easier for others...

To avoid any issue(s) with warranty / support I plan to upgrade Win10 to Pro from the Dell installation as I understand (from you - thanks) that Dell isn't too bad with bloatware.
I am not sure that I can use "Reset this PC" because I need to *wipe* (i.e. total destroy all data/OS) the SSD before it can be re-used by anyone just in case it ends up (maybe after re-use!) in Africa or similar places where old hardware is gleaned with recovery software to discover any possible useful data - call me paranoid but that's life.
I *do* appreciate your comment about using MR-Free for doing that and if I can find a USB MR rescue stick with that on (how do I tell with the Rescue Env't?) I will use it as obviously there is little or no data in a brand new Dell laptop to protect.

Thanks for highlighting some of the potential (major!) downsides with viBoot for long-term usage of an image and once I get used to viBoot using Hyper-V I will explore the 3-4 Virtual PC options (in Win10) now available as my last usage was the MS VPC 4-5 years ago for a specific App' that I didn't trust.

As I think I said earlier in this post - the opportunity I can see in viBoot is v.v.much for helping someone who is *not* a technical person but has a new PC and just might need to delve back into the old PC to retrieve something that either they or I have not migrated from the old to new. But your comments have raised yet another v.important question if you or someone else has already done this...
If I am helping the 'non-IT' relative remotely (using Teamviewer) is there any restriction on *ME* using viBoot to assist them getting what they need from the (VPC of) the old PC?

One other thing that is a v.important but perhaps obvious point is that *if* a MR image is to be used by viBoot then it needs to be complete with Data and other partitions for it to be used as I have described.
The reason that is v.important is that I normally set-up a completely different set of backup definitions for the Windows partition and the User Data partition as their recovery requirements are so v.v.different:
Any significant change to Windows *should* be preplanned even if it is useful to occasionally capture other changes.
Whereas the User's data files could literally be usefully updated on a daily basis and could represent a full day of non-reproducible effort. Obviously the Win10 "File history" facility should be able to help but an end-of-day copy is a nice additional comfort factor.
What I will NOW ensure is that prior to ANY migration to a new PC *must have* a full MR backup of all the required partitions and I must create an icon for the non-IT person to re-run that backup when they feel they need to do that - perhaps even to an external HDD if they have one - we don't want any WannaCry babies do we...

BTW Thanks v.much for the pointer: "Reflect has an "Image the partitions necessary to boot Windows" option for that" - I'll watch out for that - in V7(.1)?                                
By jphughan - 24 August 2017 5:28 PM

The virtual network is something that you just create once, and you can't do it with a batch file.  You'd have to use PowerShell or of course do it manually.  However, once you do the one-time virtual network setup, you would be able to put a NET USE batch file inside the guest to create a mapped drive to the host if desired.  Those are two different things that are set up in completely different areas.

For Reflect Free, the splash screen that you see while Reflect is loading will show the edition, and so will the title bar of the application, both in live Windows and in Rescue.  See screenshot below.  And of course even if you don't currently have Rescue Media for the Free version, you can of course download and install it on some other PC to generate it.

"Reset This PC" doesn't just delete data on the disk.  Any data that isn't overwritten by reverting to a "Fresh PC" state is forcibly overwritten on the disk, which is why it can take a few hours.  But if you're getting Win10 Pro, you could instead just enable BitLocker right from the start, in which case you technically wouldn't even need to bother erasing anything before disposing of your PC since without the decryption key, the disk will always have nothing but pseudorandom noise on it anyway.

In the use case you're describing, viBoot may in fact be better. Native Hyper-V would make more sense if the VM were going to be used on a regular basis, but if the you just want it for occasional use and/or a "safety net" for retrieving data someone may have forgotten about originally, then the performance penalty of viBoot is probably worth the increased convenience and simplicity, especially for a non-technical person.  In terms of images having only "system" partitions and others having "Data" partitions, it might be convenient to capture a single image that has everything so you can use that with viBoot, but even if that's not practical, I think viBoot allows you to attach additional virtual disks.  If so, you could make the "system image" file the primary disk that boots Windows and then the "Data partition" image file a secondary disk on the VM, which would allow you to access all of the original partitions.

The "Image all partitions necessary to boot Windows" option already exists in Reflect and has for quite a while.  See screenshot below.