Add program list and versions to image details


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maw62
maw62
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Before creating a full image, I first run an uninstaller tool.
With this tool I produce a .txt file with the installed programs (versions and install date)
I clipboard copy the contents of this text file and when starting the full image, I paste it into the comments section.
When restoring and hovering over the image, it'll show what programs are included in the image.

When regularly installing/uninstalling and creating images, I believe it would be nice if this is done by Reflect automatically.

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https://forum.macrium.com/uploads/images/8e2c01eb-507b-4419-85ab-0905.png
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jphughan
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This seems like too much of an edge case to build native support for since I imagine most people's installed applications don't change too frequently, nor would they pick an image based on the installed applications they find. Worse, I could see this opening up requests for a ton of different variations on auto-generated comments, which would eventually become burdensome to maintain and likely result in a bloated UI, especially for something as simple as a comment. However, there's a feature request that would achieve what you want, avoid UI bloat, AND become useful to far more people because it would allow them to auto-generate whatever comment variations they desired, and that would be for Reflect to support specifying the comment as a command-line parameter. If that were supported, then if you were comfortable editing a tiny bit of PowerShell, you could get what you want by doing this:

- Right-click your definition file and select "Generate a PowerShell script file", then adjust your schedule to call that rather than the definition file itself.
- Edit the automatically generated PowerShell file to add this line just before the line that calls Reflect:
$Apps = Get-WmiObject Win32_Product | sort Name | select Name,Version | Format-List  #NOTE: You can of course customize the sorting and which of the many available fields you include in your output, such as InstallDate, perhaps. And Format-Table might be better for console viewing, but List will work better in a comment field whose width you don't control.
- Find the line in the script that calls Reflect itself and specify this hypothetical comment parameter, e.g. "-Comment $Apps"

Unfortunately according to this page, it doesn't appear that the comment can currently be specified this way. Also note that retrieving the Win32_Product WMI object does take several seconds for some reason.

Edited 23 August 2017 3:27 PM by jphughan
maw62
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Thanks for the comments. The idea came around because at one point in time some application didn't run properly, or it crashed, or wouldn't start or something.
Properly I was testing it, so I needed to return to an image that did not include that program. But I was not sure starting which image the program was included or not.
Restoring the previous one resulted in the program still being there, so I had to go back another image version, etc.
As from that moment I add installed programs as comments and also the exported .txt file (with a listing of the program names) on C-drive before imaging, so once I browse the image, the listing is there as well.

Ah well, it was a suggestion only.

Thanks anyway.
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Froggie
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I would think it would have been fairly easy to browse your previous images looking for the offending program in your "Program Files" folder.
jphughan
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^ Or look at the install date of the suspected app in Programs and Features and then find a Reflect image whose Backup Date preceded it.
dyhs
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@maw62
You might want to take a look at this thread, especially my last post.
https://forum.macrium.com/PrintTopic15533.aspx
In other words, you can add a script to your backup definition file and edit the script in order to make it save Windows System Information (msinfo32, including a list of installed programs) every time you manually run the backup. You can even export it as text file, whose contents are easily searchable, that is to say only one search for many backups.
Edited 23 August 2017 6:29 PM by dyhs
maw62
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@dyhs
Many thanks.
I downloaded the 'Backup_and_Save_MSINFO32_with_PCname_Date_and_Time - TEMPLATE.txt'  file.

Viewed the contents and got dizzy  :-))
I have no knowledge about scripting, it is all voodoo for me.
I might change the path to the Reflect.exe, but there it ends. Am sorry.
How to proceed after that... it beats me.
It really feels like a newbie.



dbminter
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This thread gave me an idea, though.  How about a way to add the version of Macrium Reflect that made a particular backup image set?  Maybe a Properties button where such info could be stored in future backups made by future versions?

jphughan
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The Reflect version could change mid-set for one, but in what scenario do you envision that information being pertinent? I’m pretty sure V6 can actually restore V7 images if needed because the image file formats didn’t change — don’t quote me on that though.
dbminter
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I was thinking of situations like you describe.  Your recovery media, if you haven't updated it, could be an older version where your backup could have been made with a new version that isn't supported by the older version of Reflect.


I was also thinking of cases where I needed to troubleshoot an issue with Reflect.  I could know I'm restoring a Windows backup with X version of Reflect installed.  Then, I can test X problem, see if it's on that version.  If not, try older versions.  If it is, try updating to later versions until I find one where X problem is present.  Otherwise, I need to restore individual backups, execute Reflect, and check the version.  Could extend the time necessary to run tests by a considerable amount.


I suppose it's possible to simply mount a given backup set, navigate the virtual drive to the Reflect installation folder, and do a Properties on the Reflect executable.  If the Properties dialog has information for the version of Reflect.  Some applications do not list such information.

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