I made an OS Bootable Media - how do I test it?

Hi -

To the computer gurus, after unsuccessfully searching on line for an answer …

I used AOMEI to create an OS recovery USB drive my my OS. They have directions on how to use it if my computer crashes, but I’m kind of the paranoid type and got to thinking how do I know if it will actually work if/when (Gosh forbid) I need it?

Is there a way I can test that somehow? I don’t have an extra computer I can do that on … is that a deal killer?

Thanks much!

Gentle bump … thank you!

I’d worry less about the recovery of your OS than backups of your data. An OS can always be installed fresh from scratch. But if you loose that single copy of your symphony, it’s gone.

The key to backups is to have redundancy. I have backups that are automated to run daily. Last year I had my DAW fail due to a disk failure that had been happening in the background for awhile. Because of this some of the backed-up data was already corrupted before it was backed up. So when I went to restore files from my most recent backup a bunch of it couldn’t be successfully recovered. But I was able use backups from a month earlier to recover most of the missing files. The only things lost were corrupted files that had been created within that month. Without that redundancy a bunch more would have been lost.

Don’t know your computer type, but on a PC you can boot from the media to verify it boots without taking further action like recovery - or at least if you made it using Windows. Have no idea what AOMEI is.


Thank you as always, @raino for taking the time again to give such helpful advice!

I do have my creative work (ha!) well backed up, and I’ve set up a scheme to incrementally back up my work after each session as well. I’ve never had data loss, thank goodness, but with a machine bought in 2014 (PC, specs in “sig”) i wanted to be ready for computer death. AOMEI i guess is just another software like Acronis, etc.

The actual mechanics of testing whether the AOMEI bootable media works is what I’m not sure about. When the computer dies and won’t boot, theoretically I’ll be able to boot from that AOMEI-created USB thumb drive.

I’d like to test the bootable media now though, to make sure it will actually work when needed.

I guess I’ll contact AOMEI support and ask about that.

Thanks again!

EDIT: I realized as well, i used imprecise and possibly confusing terminology. I have a disk image of my C drive on the external SSD. And this thread is asking about testing a separate USB “bootable media” file for if my computer won’t boot.

Sorry for any confusion.

If it works like the ones Windows creates (and it may well actually be the Windows app under the hood) you should be able to plug it into a USB port on the PC and power the computer up. If it doesn’t initially boot from the USB you may need to go into the computer’s BIOS when booting and change the boot device order so it checks the USB before the C: drive.

But you should be able to boot from the USB and then shutdown to test at least the bootability without damage to your current environment.

Also it doesn’t hurt to have a couple of bootable USB sticks around just in case. But even worst case the recovery drive isn’t specific to a particular computer. So you can make one using any PC, not just the one you are making it for.

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Hi @raino ,

I have indeed created the W10 recovery drive, using the same link you supplied, thanks!

The AOMEI recovery disk is for the rest* of the C:// drive, to include all the programs I’ve installed, etc. It’s that which I’d like to test somehow.

*Though I’m not sure if this AOMEI recovery disc also includes the ability to install W10 as well.

How about an external drive - restore to that and see if you get what you expect.

That sounds good, @raino . I have a 4 TB SSD I’m using for backups now, i think I’ll check to ensure that data won’t be formatted away during the restore process (not “backup process” as I incorrectly originally wrote) then give it a go.

In case there are others as clueless as I that may wander this way in the future, I’ll post back once i get this figured out and try it.


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A bootable flashdrive will enable you to boot Windows from it when it fails from your system disk. With this you should be able to make and restore an image from any drive you select. It wil however not help you to reinstall windows. For that you need a bootable installation disk you made with the ‘Microsoft media creation tool’. But if you have a recent image you won’t have to because all your data will be restored. Take a look here:

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That’s great, @Nickeldome , thanks!

I have done that (made a USB thumb drive “bootable media” in AOEMEI), now I’m trying to figure out how test whether it actually works …

Thanks again!