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Where to get AlienRespawn (dell datasafe) software

Discussion in 'Alienware' started by GetFound, Dec 1, 2010.

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  1. GetFound

    GetFound Notebook Evangelist

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    I did actually create the usb recovery media before I raided. I was able to restore 1 time, to the raid. It would not allow me a second time stating that files were missing and wouldnt even boot to the usb.
    I'm glad I didnt pay for the AW respawn upgrade like I was going to. Looks like im back to acronis. Maybe I'll change the icon and shorcut name to feel cool again.
     
  2. cslaptop

    cslaptop Notebook Consultant

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    woah, that's a bad news, and so lame for them to do that, while it is understandable. They probably don't want people to re-distribute their copies of factory built system.

    In this case, I guess our best bet is to use something like Acronis to duplicate factory partition onto some spare HDs.

    This is still pretty unreasonable: if my HD fails, i get to restore to a factory state on the new drive for only once. I still lose the factory partition on the old drive. And I heard dell won't send you the image of that partition. Then, we lost the ability to restore to factory state forever?
     
  3. BatBoy

    BatBoy NBR Community Moderator

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    Not sure why you were only able to restore once Found. I have used the recovery flash drive multiple times to restore my 11x (I have a couple of different HDDs I use). Again, just to be sure we are all on the same page, I created the rescue drive before performing any type of clean install of W7. Right out of the box is when you need to create the rescue option.

    As I have mentioned before (and alvin spoke of this as well), the possibility to 'restore' the factory recovery option after a wipe and then clean installing AlienRespawn is unknown.

    As for Dell not 'sending' the image of the recovery patition, its simple. They cannot. The recovery partition is created when your system ships. Its done at the factory. Its individual to your system. Why we are seeing folks with different recovery size requirements.
     
  4. cslaptop

    cslaptop Notebook Consultant

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    OK. All the other questions seemed to be cleared. Only one left.

    You are not sure about whether it can be restored to factory state in a clean install OS without a factory partition on the HD, right? But can't we restore factory state using USB drive before installing any OS onto a new HD without a factory partition? The two methods are essentially the same, aren't they? Or do we have to have sort of a AR software installed in a clean install OS first in order to utilize the USB drive?

    At the same time, I assume the USB drive or DVDs created serves the same purpose as the factory image on HD? It's just the image being stored in the USB or DVDs, isn't it? When we get a new HD with nothing on it, we will need to 1.do a clean install of OS; 2.install AR software; 3.plug in the USB/DVD to restore, in which case USB serves as the factory image as if it was being stored on the HD partition. Is this right logic?

    EDIT: sorry, i just re-read alkin's multi-reply post very carefully one more time. And it looks like the major issue on a new HD will be that there is no factory image, so AR cannot be installed lacking of a serial #, so even if USB drive has everything from factory image, it can't be utilized... Endless looping. But then, this once again seem to be very unreasonable. In side the AR software, it claims that more than half time, it is the HD failure that's causing troubles, and in that case, factory image is very likely damaged, too. The meaningfulness of a USB/DVD restore is reduced if we cannot just use them on a new HD. We'd be better off just clone the factory partition into an image and transfer it onto many many HDs that we will be using =/
     
  5. BatBoy

    BatBoy NBR Community Moderator

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    Sorry cs... you completely lost me.

    Let me recap the Emergency Recovery option -

    When first opening the system from an out-of-box state, you should create the rescue option (USB Flash Drive or Optical Media) immediately - before wiping, before reinstalling, before anything.

    Lets say you purchase an SSD to replace the stock HDD your system shipped with. The process would be:

    1. Swap out drives
    2. Boot from rescue media (USB Flash or Optical)
    3. Follow the prompts to restore to a factory state which will 'image' the drive with your rescue media. This will put your newly installed HDD into the same out of box state your system was in when unpacking it.

    I've done this multiple times and it is the same result. I have used different HDDs (different sizes).

    As for your other questions - not sure. Like I said, you lost me. ;)
     
  6. steviejones133

    steviejones133 Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    quick question on this subject - if a clean install of windows is performed using the dell supplied discs (after making factory image using respawn or datasafe), you go through normall windows install and install dell latest drivers as per your system.

    Doing this means that you effectively get rid of respawn/datasafe in the process.

    So, assuming you have created recovery media (usb/optical discs)....what is the procedure then for getting respawn or datasafe back....

    Is it to follow Alvins link to the download and just follow on screen instructions? - kinda lost me too a 'lil bit LOL
     
  7. cslaptop

    cslaptop Notebook Consultant

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    That was clear enough for me hehehe, thanks for taking care of my bad english reading. Then I'm not sure what you were unsure about together with alvin? I thought that starting with a blank HDD is already the worst case scenario?

    "As I have mentioned before (and alvin spoke of this as well), the possibility to 'restore' the factory recovery option after a wipe and then clean installing AlienRespawn is unknown."

    I still can't interpret this bold part =( Let's just say it's a blank HDD which is the same as a wipe, you've got a recovery USB/DVD, you can restore to factory state w/o AR software already. What can't you do? What is this factory recovery option exactly? Can't we just use the USB?
     
  8. BatBoy

    BatBoy NBR Community Moderator

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    I mentioned this earlier - the links Alvin posted are a question mark in terms of being able to restore a factory recovery option. My guess (yes, I have not tested it and have no plans to do so) is that if you wipe the HDD, install AlienRespawn using the link alvin provided, you will not have a working respawn option.

    The only way to do this is to make that backup/emergency recovery media that AlienRespawn/DataSafe Local keeps bugging you about ;)

    Yeah, not even sure what the point to all of this was... Alvin wanted the factory version of AlienRespawn. He located a link on Dell's community forum and since posting, this thread has turned into a FAQ on AlienRespawn/Recovery - which is fine.

    My 2 cents on the matter -

    Use the Recovery media creation option as soon as the system is unboxed. Save it and stash it away. You never know when you will need it to revert to an 'out of box' state.
     
  9. cslaptop

    cslaptop Notebook Consultant

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    that's an easy one ;) as soon as i understand what the question is. I think I was trying to squeeze to many subjects into one post with BatBoy there, rofl.

    If you lost factory image, that's forever gone on the HD, the only thing you have is the USB drive ("so use it wisely", lol). From BatBoy, it looks like you can skip clean install and boot from USB there. AR software being downloaded does not include factory image.
     
  10. cslaptop

    cslaptop Notebook Consultant

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    I see, so part of the topic was struggling with the situation where you do not have a rescue USB but have had factory image wiped out. That's a no solution I guess ;p

    Well, I think I probably thought about it a bit further. I was thinking about the possibility of putting factory image into the new HD as well as creating another rescue source from there.

    The reason I worry about this is:

    If I lost the previous drive (or a drive failure), all I'm left with is the rescue USB I created. There will be no factory image on the new HD, so AR can't be installed, so no more rescue USB can be created. And in the future, if something happened to that only USB, I'm done with ability to go back to factory state in any HD. So I'm a little worried because this looks I've got only limited time to use this function. I would prefer an endless chain in which I can repeatedly produce as much as rescue USBs I want, but not just one (after the factory image is lost, no more rescue sources can be made). Indeed I'm an insecure guy, huh. You can argue that I should just use Acronis to clone that factory partition into an image and feel secure :D
     
  11. BatBoy

    BatBoy NBR Community Moderator

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    Actually, I can clarify this one - when you restore with that rescue option (USB flash or Optical), you do have AlienRespawn (or Dell DataSafe local) back on the restored HDD. So, if you:

    1. Put in a new HDD/SDD as an upgrade and then 'boot from the rescue media you created',
    2. your new drive is just the same as when you unboxed. you can recreate the rescue media (this I suggest doing).

    As for having the rescue option and another option, no - I do not believe this is possible except if you have the paid version of AlienRespawn (since it allows you to setup an additional restore point).
     
  12. steviejones133

    steviejones133 Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    This is getting a bit clearer...i think lol.....take this as a scenario:

    User gets laptop out the box....first thing he does is create recovery media via AWR or DDS.....he now has a factory image should anything go pear shaped.

    User wants to perform a clean install of windows via Dell OS discs....he wipes HDD and reinstalls OS (same as swapping out a HDD in effect)

    This process eradicates AWR and DDS software upon install of windows

    Now....if user wants to recover using media created earlier, can he do so? - AWR/DDS software is no longer on his system so must he get it via Alvins link to be able to boot from the media created initially? - or can you slap the usb/disc in, boot from said media and return to factory image?

    Or do you NEED AWR/DDS software installed to be able to recover from this media?
     
  13. BatBoy

    BatBoy NBR Community Moderator

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    So for your hypothetical Stevie -

    No, the user would not use the link Alvin posted. If the sole purpose was to recover the system to an 'out of box' state after a clean install of windows on a new HDD, the user would just use the emergency recovery media created at time of unboxing.

    Keep in mind, the recovery media is 5GB+. In some cases, larger. That recovery option is essentially an image of the factory drive state - its compressed using the Windows .WIM process.

    Now, here is an interesting twist - one I have not tried on my 11xR1. Its similar to what I found on the M17xR1 with the old version of Alien Respawn.

    You could try this (I wont, but you can ;) ):

    1. Boot from your Windows 7 Install media to perform a clean install.
    2. DO NOT wipe the drive - the W7 installer will see multiple partitions. ONLY install to the C: partition. Basically, this will wipe the C: drive and you will have a clean OS install where you could then use Grim's driver list and install your drivers.
    3. Once done, use the link originally provided http://alwchecker.alienrespawn.com/alwchecker-en.html or use Alvin's direct link. NOTE: There is no difference between the two. Alvin's link just bypasses the check for the recovery partition. This should reinstall AlienRespawn.

    What you end up with is AlienRespawn installed and access to the original factory recovery option. The restore partition was never wiped so you should be ok.

    Now, in the case of the M17xR1 and the old version of AlienRespawn, this was pointless as it was shipped with a Vista OS and had a Vista recovery partition/image.

    follow?
     
  14. steviejones133

    steviejones133 Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Im following LOL...at least i think so!.....

    Im not gonna try it yet either;) - im just curious if i DO want to fresh install windows at some point in the future....forewarned is forearmed and all that eh?

    So, If i boot from Dell OS discs, install fresh windows to C partition without deleting or altering the recovery partition...this will geive me a fresh install.

    At this point (assuming initial recovery media was created PRIOR to fresh install initiation) , its simply a matter of d/l from Alvins links.

    This will reinstall AWR to the recovery partition on the fresh install....

    If difficulties arise, you can then use the media created at the very start (out of box) to revert the whole shebang back to out of box status - RIGHT? lol:D

    I take it that if you DONT install the AWR software AFTER your fresh install, you wont be able to use the recovery media that was created at the outset......or can you boot from it without the AWR software?

    God...im gonna get a glass of wine hahahahaha:eek:

    Basically....if i do a clean install.....if i alter the recovery partition or dont install AWR, is my recovery media useless???? - just want to be 100000% sure before i even contemplate a fresh OS install.....at the mo, i can recover to factory easily.....no probs....seems that a fresh install has its benefits but also some major headaches if you dont understand what you are doing BEOFRE doing it....
     
  15. BatBoy

    BatBoy NBR Community Moderator

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    Again, no - even if you wipe the drive and perform a clean OS install and choose not to install only to the C: partition followed by using the link I provided to the AR checker/download, you can still use the recovery usb which was created at the time of unboxing to restore your system to the out of box state. This will of course wipe your clean install but will preserve your out of box state.

    Now I am taking a break - all this respawn functionality has left me with a headache. LOL. NBR really needs to pay me for this. j/k

    This forum is its own reward. You guys are top notch and when I have had an issue with my system, the forum always has responded with suggestions. NBR AW Forum FTW! ;)
     
  16. steviejones133

    steviejones133 Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    I think thats what i needed to hear....if i fresh install, and as i HAVE created media (was the very first thing i did after initial booting) , regardless of what i do to the partitions etc etc, i will be able to return to factory state even if i havent reinstalled the AWR software on the fresh install......

    That about right Batboy?

    PS: Sorry for the inept understanding....this issue has concerned me for some time and im glad i found this thread about it...
     
  17. BatBoy

    BatBoy NBR Community Moderator

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    Yes, that is correct and no need to apologize for asking questions. ;)

    I have tested this and it works fine on my 11xR1 using DataSafe Local and AlienRespawn (I updated to the AlienRespawn - which is another process on its own and one I will link to later, no time to find my post on this at the moment). ;)
     
  18. steviejones133

    steviejones133 Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Thats great.....im sure i recall performing a clean install on my very first m17x back in June ... and then slapping in the recovery media and restoring to factory without doing anything else....think i messed up the driver install procedure...led me to have seconf thoughts about a clean install again...

    But, at least now, i know that regardless of what i mess up LOL , i can just revert back to the "out of box" experience by booting from my recovery media.....

    Thanks buddy...much appreciated.:D
     
  19. alvinkhorfire

    alvinkhorfire Notebook Consultant

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    If the AlienRespawn Recovery Media is used, either:
    a) on newer hard disk which replaces the original hard disk and its hard disk space can of any size, as long as it is larger than the Recovery partition, or;
    b) original hard disk which all of its partitions have been formated,
    Windows 7 should be restored to its original factory state.

    Batboy
    For such case (and your case), does AlienRespawn Recovery Media (either DVDs or USB stick) create a new Recovery partition in that hard disk? I don't think so, but please correct me If I am wrong.

    The AlienRespawn Recovery Media is able to restore the system to factory state, without needing the presence of the original Recovery partition. Thus, it is a standalone software. In short, just pop in the media into completely empty hard disk and the restoration will be completed.
    What I mean by needing the original Recovery partition is for reinstalling AlienRespawn on newly-formatted system.

    Yes, they are the same. The reason for such bypass is that DSLCheck.exe from http://alwchecker.alienrespawn.com/alwchecker-en.html sometimes cannot detect the recovery partition, thus will not direct you to the second link, as in my case.
     
  20. cslaptop

    cslaptop Notebook Consultant

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    I see. I also underlined the same question I have as you did in the quote. I also doubt that after a recovery from USB drive, there will be any new partition being created. So we better keep a clone image of factory partition in safe place.

    Basically, if we had a wiped HD or a brand new blank HD, where the original factory partition is gone, after we use the USB/DVD to restore to factory state, there will be AR software but not the factory partition. So we still CANNOT create another rescue USB anymore. All we are left with is the only one rescue USB.
     
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