To make an Acronis true image home *full disk* backup from a "boot" or start-up disk follow the steps below... Because the resulting backup file will be quite large I recommend a 1TB or 2TB (depending on the size of the data to be backed up and how many copes you may wish to store) external USB3 backup drive.
USB3 is significantly faster than USB2.
Step 1 insert the pre-prepared Acronis backup "boot" or "start-up" disk CD/DVD or USB into the drive.
(see here for instructions on how to make this if you have acronis already installed)
Start up your PC from that disk (yes I know there is a fair amount of information missing from this step and that can be a complex process that I will have to document this else ware or you can do your own research)
Once the Acronis start up environment is displayed as shown below, plug in your large external hard drive that you are planning to backup to.
Then select Acronis True Image (see 1 below)
Select backup *My Disks* (see 2 below)
Browse and select the entire disk drive that you want to backup (see 3 below), in this instance its easy as there is only one disk drive. You will have to look carefully at the disks to see which need to be backed up, note that your USB backup drive will show here as well and you don't want to include that in the backup. Note also the a windows install normal includes two or more disk "partitions". Again backup the entire disk drive, not just the partitions.
Select the location for the backup file this will be your external backup drive (see 5 below). It could also be a network location in a more advanced scenario. Rename the backup in a way that will still make sense in a year from now and click next.
Click proceed and wait for the backup to complete (see 8 below)
For advanced options such as splitting the backup to DVD sized chunks for easy and low cost archival click 7 below (for advanced users).
For a solid sate hard drive (SSD) and USB 3 hard drive and computer the backup may be done in as little as 10 minutes. On older equipment or when there is a significant amount of data the process may take hours or overnight.
Once the backup has completed remove all the CD/DVD & USB drives from the computer and restart. Label the backup and store in a secure location.
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