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Image flash drive

mushy
Grafter
Posts: 182
Registered: 16-10-2012

Image flash drive

Hi All
I'm not a Mac user so wouldn't know where to start on this but daughter getting a new Macbook Pro with 512Gb flash drive built in, with Microsoft Windows systems on standard IDe/SATA drives i tend to image the drive prior to running it up as a back in case of drive failure and would like to do thge same with the macbook pro.
Is this possible on the mac with a flash drive and if so what would be the best way of achieving this ?
Steve
7 REPLIES
Waldo
Grafter
Posts: 473
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Image flash drive

Could you settle for this?
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 18,696
Thanks: 1,951
Fixes: 247
Registered: 11-01-2008

Re: Image flash drive

With the Mac it's not as painful as windows as you don't require a key and activation, so as Waldo has pointed out to recover the OS is straight forward.
I would then use TimeMachine on an external drive to make daily backups so in the event of it going wrong you can recover the OS and restore the machine into the same state with the TimeMachine drive very quickly.
I've done it with a replacement drive so you don't have to worry about matching drive size etc.

Customer / Moderator / If it helped click the thumb / If it fixed it click 'This fixed my problem'

mushy
Grafter
Posts: 182
Registered: 16-10-2012

Re: Image flash drive

Hi Guys
Many thanks for your offerings and suggestions, its looking like i will probaby have to go down that route but would really prefer to have an image of the drive to start with.
What i tend to do is create an image of the drive as it comes from new before being run up for the first time and again afterwards which is updated from time to time so i always have the option of going back to a new setup or to the last backup.
From what i can see (and i could be wrong here) that if it came to the worst doing a recovery would mean downloading a 4GB + file (InstallESD.dmg) over the net for internet recovery which i wouldn't call ideal on a slow connection and once loaded deletes itself after the install process is completed.
Maybe i can get to this file before running up the install on the macbook but will see if thats possible when it arrives.
I understand it could be restored with Time Machine afterwards but wouldn't you also need to have a working system in place to do the restore in the first place ?
Also confusing me is creating a usb/dvd restore disc once the system is up and running if the install file has already been deleted, i assume it just creates the system as it is at that point and just drops it back on when doing the restore.
I don't fully understand the recovery process yet or whether that is in one partition of the flash drive or similar to the BIOS or options within a boot partition as i have never had anything to do with Macs but will keep having a look around as time permits.
Anyway enough of my ramblins, many thanks for the help which is always appreciated.
Steve
RPMozley
Aspiring Pro
Posts: 1,118
Thanks: 30
Fixes: 5
Registered: 04-11-2011

Re: Image flash drive

Creating a image of a disk is done by using the "Disk Utility.app" found in Applications->Utilities folder.
Simply select the partition or whole drive and select "New Image" or "Create Image". Choose the location of the image and click "Save". Then wait for awhile. Roll eyes
I don't think it's changed with Mountain Lion but it should be pretty similar.
As to restoring when there's a system failure. This used to be done by booting from the install CD/DVD included with the Mac, where there's an option to open Disk Utility from the disc.
Things may be slightly different now that there is Time Machine.
All the information is usually available to read from the Help menu or by clicking on a purple round "?" button in the window pane.
That's RPM to you!!
apjashley1
Grafter
Posts: 307
Registered: 31-07-2012

Re: Image flash drive

(deleted)
apjashley1
Grafter
Posts: 307
Registered: 31-07-2012

Re: Image flash drive

Steve - Macs don't have a BIOS, they use EFI. There's a fairly advanced recovery system built in with WiFi, web browsing, disk imaging etc. even if the hard drive dies. It can either restore a fully working system from your Time Machine drive, or download the OS from Apple to start from scratch.
There's no 'setup' as such on a new Mac, it's ready to go as soon as you turn it on.
You could download the 4GB installer from the App Store and image it to a cheap USB flash drive / blank DVD for your peace of mind, or put it on your Time Machine drive, but in both cases this is complete overkill as the Mac's internal recovery system is plenty capable.
mushy
Grafter
Posts: 182
Registered: 16-10-2012

Re: Image flash drive

Thanks guys for all the replys, i think i will let go of the new image as its seems pretty conclusive that it can be restored quite easily, besides once my daughter gets her hands on it when it arrives i can't see me getting a look in to do anything with it  Smiley