When the software company Powerquest announced the program Drive Image v. 1.0 in 1997/1998, it was nothing short of a revolution.
Initially the program could be run from one diskette (1.44 Mb) and had a price tag around USD 700
However today, with more players on the market, you can get an Image-program for about USD 50.
Some of the main players are:
- Acronis - Acronis True Image
- Paragon - Paragon Drive Backup
- Symantec - Norton Ghost (aka. Norton Ghost with Drive Image technology :-)
- Terabyte Unlimited - Image for Windows
- r-tools technology - R-Drive Image
- Active Disk Image - Active Disk Image
Some free alternatives:
- Macrium Reflect FREE Edition
- DriveImage XML
- Seagate and Maxtor - DiscWizard Free TrueImage if you have a Seagate/Maxtor disk.
- Western Digital - Acronis True Image Western Digital Edition Free TrueImage if you have a Western Digital disk.
Assuming you already have an anti virus program like Avast! (Free for personal use), Mcafee Virusscan or Symantec Norton Anti Virus and an anti-spyware / -adware program like Lavasoft AdAware (free for personal use)), the tools you need are:
|System cleaner||CCleaner (Freeware)|
|Disk partitioning||MiniTool Partition Wizard (Freeware)|