It is my pleasure to recommend an open source software tool to IT students and entrepreneurs of small and medium businesses. It is called Clonezilla and can be used as a disaster recovery solution.
Steven Shiau is the original author of this software tool and NCHC Free Software Labs, in Taiwan, is the developer of Clonezilla. The project is currently hosted on SourceForge.net. It is ranked 15 on SourceForge.net and has been downloaded more than 900,000 times as of 7/1/09. It is rated 3.2/5 (good) on Softpedia.com as of 7/1/09.
There are 2 versions of this software: Clonezilla live CD and Clonezilla Sever Edition. Clonezilla live CD is the main tool for individual computer restoration.
When a computer is attacked by a vicious virus, its users may not be able to login to the computer at all. Rebuilding such computer using manufacturer’s original OS CDs can be time consuming and it can take up to 4 hours. This includes the time that you have to re-install your favorite software: MS office suite or OpenOffice.org, Firefox, Adobe Reader and so on. In many cases, important user data may have lost as well. Using Clonezilla, administrators or computer owners can save time. One can use Clonezilla to rebuild a computer in 30 minutes or 1 hour.
To use Clonezilla in a backup-restore solution for a particular PC, one needs to create the hard drive image of this PC. This hard drive image can be saved to an external hard drive, which will be used to rebuild the PC when it is attacked. Steps to save the disk image and steps to restore the disk image can be found in the document section of Clonezilla.
There are few tutorials of Clonezilla on the Internet.
- Youtube.com: by Rockrol913
- Dedoimedo: Clonezilla and PartImage, (this site shows you 2 free imaging software programs)
- A few more through google.com
Here are some good links about clonezilla
- Wikipedia.com description of clonezilla
- Comparison of disk cloning software
- Freshmeat.net desciption of Clonezilla