Restore discs - Macrium Reflect or Lenovo's own?

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So I am getting ready to a HDD to SSD swap on my Lenovo T520 (Win 7 Pro), and thought I'd make some recovery discs before I do that, as a precaution. I have Macrium Reflect Free version, which can make a set of recovery discs. But the laptop also has Lenovo's own built-in software that can create a set of OEM Lenovo recovery discs. I am wondering if one would have an advantage over the other - and trying to decide which resource I should use to make the discs... Any suggestions on which one I should use? (pls. state why, if possible). Thanks in advance. Also: one uses DVD-R discs for this purpose, correct?
 
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Not sure about the pros and cons of each, but the recovery disc doesn't have to be a DVD-R medium necessarily. Some Lenovo machines don't even have a CD/DVD drive. It could be a USB drive, too. It may just need to be formatted during the recovery media creation process, so you'd lose anything else you have on it.
 

97tbird

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Thanks, Pete. Mine does have a CD/DVD drive, so I can use DVD-Rs. (I guess if a USB drive is used, you will probably have to change the normal boot order in BIOS, right? This might be a stupid question as I am not that well versed in such things, BUT if you're in a situation where you need the use of a recovery disc, how do you get into BIOS? or does it not matter at all?) Either way, as I have a DVD drive, and as it seems more simple, I guess I will go with using DVD-Rs for now... IDK, even to use a recovery DVD, does boot order have to changed?
 
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Originally Posted By: 97tbird
IDK, even to use a recovery DVD, does boot order have to changed?
It might need to be, depending on how your machine is set up currently. The way to access the BIOS may differ depending on Lenovo model, but typically pressing F2 during boot gets you there... http://smallbusiness.chron.com/boot-cd-lenovo-55992.html You might also be able to access the boot menu directly by pressing F12 instead... http://www.isunshare.com/windows-password/how-to-set-your-computer-to-boot-from-usb-drive.html
 
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Also try F12 for the boot menu (can't recall if that works on Lenovo). Using the boot menu will only select the boot device for one time. Using BIOS menu will change the boot sequence permanently.
 
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The diff. between the 2 processes is using the Lenovo software it will restore the drive to factory like condition, using Macrium, all of your programs you have installed and the data you have produced will transfer to your new drive.
 
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DVD's are cheap - why not just play it safe and make recovery discs with both. And verify them, if the recovers software gives you the option to do so. Personally, I'm paranoid so I make multiple backups via multiple methods when I move HDDs
 
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I'd recommend you do both as I'm one of those who like redundancy in backups & because you're talking about 2 different things. The Lenovo recovery disks will allow you to recreate your computer setup as it was when it left the factory/you received it, on your current HDD or any replacement HDD or SSD. That includes the OS, any other software, utilities and the drivers, (and any bloatware). Be aware, recovery disks are available from Lenovo for free plus shipping, (usually less than $10.00), during the first year of ownership. These might be used, for instance, if you ever wanted to sell or give away your computer. You could uninstall all your software, (so you could reinstall on your new one), then restore to factory without any of your personal information on the drive. You also have the ability to do this directly on the drive as well, assuming that you still have that restore partition available and in working order. Macrium will make an image of your HDD to include any or all partitions for restoration onto your current or any replacement drive. Restoration will put your partition or entire drive back to the date of the last image. THIS CAN INCLUDE THE PARTITION WITH THE RESTORE TO FACTORY IMAGE, but it does not have to. Where this might come in handy is on systems that only allow 1 set of recovery disks to be burned. What happens if those disks are lost or become corrupted? The answer is to make an image of your drive, burn the disks and restore the image. If you ever need to you can burn another set of recovery disks. As to the media for the Lenovo recovery disks, technically you should use DVD+R for this purpose. While DVD-R will work in almost all cases, it's used mostly for music/movies etc because it is accepted on the widest array of players. I like to think of it as DVD+R for data and DVD-R for music. For Macrium, make SURE you create the Macrium recovery disks, both WinPE and Linux.
 
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Originally Posted By: Smcatub
DVD's are cheap - why not just play it safe and make recovery discs with both. And verify them, if the recovers software gives you the option to do so. ...
Indeed. I've found that recovery disks I made have a good chance of becoming unreadable by the time I need them! I understand why the OEMs don't include them anymore, but those OEM disks always worked, even after 10 years, while home-burned disks are unreliable. When you order business PCs from Dell you can pay them $3 to include recovery disks. I'd gladly pay that any day. Not only are the OEM disks better quality, but it wastes nearly an hour of my time just to burn my own set!
 
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Almost correct, Macrium free won't restore to dissimilar HARDWARE, but will restore to any HDD/SSD on the same computer.
 
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97tbird

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Thanks for all the valuable comment. I shall create 2 sets using each method. smile Now a side question: My samsung 840 Pro SSD just arrived; I know that it has had several Firmware updates (NON destructive as all Samsung SSD FW updates), and I don't know if my specific SSD has the latest FW version or not. This is done using the Samsung Magician SSD software which maintains Samsung SSDs. --Shall I connect the SSD to the laptop via SATA III/USB cable and update the FW BEFORE the actual swap? --OR shall do the swap/migration first and THEN update the FW?
 
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Originally Posted By: 97tbird
Thanks for all the valuable comment. I shall create 2 sets using each method. smile Now a side question: My samsung 840 Pro SSD just arrived; I know that it has had several Firmware updates (NON destructive as all Samsung SSD FW updates), and I don't know if my specific SSD has the latest FW version or not. This is done using the Samsung Magician SSD software which maintains Samsung SSDs. --Shall I connect the SSD to the laptop via SATA III/USB cable and update the FW BEFORE the actual swap? --OR shall do the swap/migration first and THEN update the FW?
While they warn you to backup your data, "just in case", I have used Samsung SSDs for years now (including 830s, 840 Pros & 840 EVOs) and always update through the magician software and haven't had any issues with my data. This process would be simpler for you as well. IIRC, I tried to patch a drive in and update it before installing the OS and it was problematic. That was many generations ago though when the 830 was the current model. I'm sure they have corrected that through the many revisions to the magician software over the years. Since then, I just do it after the install. I always have backups, so it won't be a big deal if it messes up. However, I HIGHLY recommend that you do a clean install if any way possible. The majority of the times that I have seen SSDs under performing, it was due to people cloning their drives or installing a system image. I know it's more work, but it is well worth it in the long run. Good luck and enjoy the new drive!
 

97tbird

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Thanks! I tried it externally connected with a SATA III/USB cable and Magician cannot see the SSD. It only sees the SATA wire itself (shows Apricorn SATA wire), and says cannot detect a Samsung SSD. However the MIGRATION software DOES see the Samsung SSD correctly. I guess I will just do the swap and then use magician and it will hopefully see it when the SSD is internal (read about this happening with the latest Magician quite a bit on the web).
 
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