Acronis True Image is a powerful backup and drive imaging software that normally costs at least $50 for home users and more for a business version. Western Digital is now offering a version for its customers for free.
The purpose of the download from Western Digital is to allow users to do a bit for bit copy of their old hard drive onto their new Western Digital hard drive, a process called cloning. That way, instead of reinstalling the operating system, all the person’s software and then copying over personal data and files followed by tweaking settings in the OS and apps, the previous installation is mirrored onto the new drive saving a lot of time. The software will also do backups of the data after it is installed on the new drive.
The WD version of Acronis True Image Home is based on the 2009 version, which admittedly is a little out of date. Acronis just released version 11, which is newer than the free WD version; but the vast majority of the features in the paid version seem to be present in this free WD version.
The best features include:
- Drive Cloning described above
- Erasing a drive after it is cloned to a new drive
- Drive Image Backup copies an image of the drive as needed over time
- Drive Image Recovery takes copies of back up images and restores them to a drive (recovering from a problem like a virus or faulty drive)
- Create a Bootable Standalone Recovery Manager makes a bootable disc to recover from a non-booting system
The software works with Windows XP, Vista and 7. Download the software on the product information page at Western Digital.