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keeping a preinstalled win8 clone aside - is it possible?

Last response: in Windows 8
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August 20, 2013 3:44:40 PM

Hi,
I'm looking into purchasing an ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A-DH51 and shifting it's win8 preinstalled OS into a clean linux install.
Besides the known issues of linux support of this endeavor, how would it be possible to keep the whole win8 installation cloned on some external storage, just in case something goes wrong or I decide to give\sell the device to a non linux user?

Cheers,
Amit.
a b Ĉ ASUS
a b * Windows 8
a b 5 Linux
August 20, 2013 3:53:40 PM

amitw said:
Hi,
I'm looking into purchasing an ASUS Zenbook Prime UX31A-DH51 and shifting it's win8 preinstalled OS into a clean linux install.
Besides the known issues of linux support of this endeavor, how would it be possible to keep the whole win8 installation cloned on some external storage, just in case something goes wrong or I decide to give\sell the device to a non linux user?

Cheers,
Amit.


You have two options:

1. Take an image of the drive and store it somewhere safe. There's a ton of free utilities that can do this, including one in Windows 8 itself.

2. Wipe it completely and reinstall it later. The serial number that comes with the device is an OEM licence, it' belongs with the device rather than the user. Windows 8 can be reinstalled as many times as you wish on that same device. Asus may even have the key embedded in the motherboard firmware (SLIC table) which bypasses the need for activation completely.
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Best solution

August 20, 2013 4:06:41 PM

It should come with a recovery CD that already contains an image of factory default installation of Windows 8 by Asus. If not, sometimes on first boot, it will ask you to create the recovery disk yourself by inserting a blank DVD or USB key. If it's a USB key you will need to keep it aside and won't be able to use it for something else unfortunately so you might have to buy a USB stick just for that. My friend got a Dell laptop recently and he had to use a 16GB USB stick.

The HDD should also contain a hidden recovery partition that is the same as recovery CDs. If you install Linux without destroying the recovery partition this would be another way for you to revert back to Windows 8 after. But I still recommend creating recovery CDs or USB keys in case it's the HDD that goes bad.

Worst case scenario, as suggested by Pinhedd you can take an image of the disk yourself before installing Linux. You can find many free tools to clone disk on the web. Just keep the image file somewhere safe or make multiple back-ups just in case.
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August 21, 2013 1:03:39 AM

Thank's both!
It is good to have all options for choice.
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August 21, 2013 3:13:36 AM

By the way, if you don't get a recovery disk by Asus in the box, or if the system doesn't ask you to create one on first boot, I would contact them right away, they're supposed to provide a way to reinstall it's their job. You can even send the laptop back to the store for reimbursement during the first 15 days if they refuse to comply.
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August 21, 2013 7:33:07 AM


Cheers!
I'll look into that.
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!