Macrium Reflect is a line of backup software from Paramount Software UK, Ltd. The Standard edition is the lowest priced ($45) version to support incremental backups, file and folder backups, and several other useful features. It’s suitable for both home and business users.
- Full disk imaging
- File and folder backup
- Clean, easy to use interface
- Can’t restore to dissimilar hardware
- No CPU priority setting for scheduled backups
The Bottom Line
Macrium Reflect Standard is solid, full disk imaging software.
The main screen shows a layout of your hard drives and links to common tasks.
Macrium Reflect Standard lets you choose from three backup tasks:
- Image all local drives on this computer
- Create an image of the partition(s) required to backup and restore Windows
- Create a File and Folder backup
Most users should choose the second option, which will backup your entire C: drive. You’ll then be guided through the process of choosing a destination (I chose my external USB drive). You can also choose to burn it to optical media, or save it to a network drive.
You’ll then have the option to configure advanced settings, such as setting a password and compression, before running the backup.
Before you even think about restoring, you’ll need to create rescue media. I recommend you do this when you create your first backup. When creating the rescue media, the software lets you choose whether you want Windows PE or Linux as the rescue environment. They both accomplish the same thing (although it’s nice to have the option).
The recovery environment is very powerful, almost as much as the desktop version of the software. Aside from restoring, you can fix Windows boot problems, explore drive images, even create more backups.
Macrium Reflect Standard had no trouble restoring my computer.
Full Disk Imaging
Exact copies of your hard drive, which can be restored at any time. This is what Macrium is known for. Backups can be incremental, which means only the changes since the last backup will be saved (saving disk space).
Open Images in Windows Explorer
Say you want to browse your backup just like you would a local folder on your hard drive. Macrium Reflect Standard can integrate with Windows Explorer to do just that.
XML Definition files
Macrium Reflect Standard saves your backup jobs in .xml files. These allow you to launch your backup job by simply opening a file. Put it on your desktop for easy access.
VBScript and MS-DOS batch files support
These are more for advanced users, but will allow powerful ways to execute your backups. Also, this is the only way to run pre/post commands.
There’s an online help manual, which I found to be well laid out. There’s also a support forum, where users can post questions publicly. All of the support threads I checked had their questions answered.
For a more direct response, support is offered via an online contact form. I submitted a ticket and was responded to within one business day.
Macrium Reflect Standard also seems to be regularly updated by the developers. During the course of this review two patches were released. Both were immediately available for download within the program. If you don’t want to be bothered by constant updates, there’s an option to only check for updates on a weekly or monthly basis.
The Standard edition can’t restore to dissimilar hardware. I’ve seen this supported in other backup software at this price range, so this lowers the rating a little.
Although you can set the CPU priority during a running backup, there’s no way to set the CPU priority for a scheduled backup, which I found odd. I was told by Macrium they hope to get this implemented in a later release.
|Macrium Reflect Standard
|Files and Folders
|Full Disk Image