The feature, Universal Restore in AOMEI Backupper, allows you to restore operating system (OS) to a computer with dissimilar hardware. So you can recover your OS instantly in case of hardware failure and deploy the same operating system to many computers. You can also use it for other purpose, such as physical-to-virtual or virtual-to-physical migration.

To restore system to dissimilar hardware

Before restoring a system image, you must ensure the items following:

1. You need to have a bootable media of AOMEI Backupper. (See Creating AOMEI Backupper bootable media.) If you don’t have a bootable media or the target computer doesn’t offer ports to insert a media, you can also use PXE Boot Tool to do the restoration. See How to use Aomei PXE Boot Tool?

2. You have prepared a system backup image before, and you can use Backupper to find the image file easily. If not, please make a system backup now. See System Backup.

Restore to dissimilar hardware with the steps below:

  1. Boot the target computer from bootable media. Or, boot the target computer into BIOS then set it to PXE network boot mode. Using both methods can boot into AOMEI Backupper WinPE/Linux system.

  2. In the left tab page, select Restore, and then click Path to browse the path to locate the system image file.

  3. Locate System Image

  4. A pop-up window will prompt that you are doing system restore, please select Yes to confirm it.

  5. The system images will be listed in the window, please select a backup time point to restore, then click Next.

  6. Select Backup Point

  7. Select a destination location to restore the image, then click Next.

  8. Select Restore Destination

  9. Review Operation Summary Window. Please make sure that the option Universal Restore in the lower left corner is checked if you restore system image to dissimilar hardware, otherwise it will not be able to boot after restoring.

  10. Operation Summary

  11. Click Start Restore to perform the operation.

For further details with screenshots, see How to restore operating system to dissimilar hardware?

  • The system image cannot be restored to the drive where you save it. And all the data on the selected drive will be formatted.

  • After restoring Windows to a computer with dissimilar hardware completely, you may need to reactivate Windows and other software.

  • Some drivers, like video/sound card drivers, display driver, NIC drivers etc, are not installed by AOMEI Universal Restore. As these drivers will not affect system startup, you can install them manually after restoring successfully.