Best Free Disk Image Software for Windows 11(All Aspects)

You will learn the best free disk image software for Windows 11 in all aspects and how to use it to create a disk image in 2 easy ways.


By Clytze Updated on May 9, 2024

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Why Need Disk Image and Disk Image Software?

The disk image is an exact copy of your drive (HDD, SSD, USB, etc.) including all your programs, settings and data, which can effectively secure the data on your disks. By the way, if the disk is the system disk, it will contain the operating system, and the system files, drives, etc required to boot.

With disk image, you can easily resolve computer failure, such as boot failure, system crashes, malware virus, etc. It is also a good assistant for migrating a disk to a larger disk or SSD with high performance. To achieve them, you need the best free disk imaging software for Windows 11. 

Disk Image Software 11

Quick Navigation:

👉 Best Free Disk Image or Clone Software for Windows 11
👉 Create Disk Image in Windows 11 with Disk Backup
👉 Clone Hard Drive in Windows 11 for Quick Upgrade
👉 Disk Imaging vs Disk Cloning: Which Is Better?
👉 FAQs about Disk Imaging Software

Best Free Disk Image or Clone Software for Windows 11

AOMEI Backupper Standard is your best choice whether you want to create a disk image in Windows 11 or clone disk for quick upgrade. With it, you can easily backup disk and focus on long-term data protection with its backup features. And you can also upgrade hard drive in a quick way and improve computer performance with its cloning feature. 

AOMEI Backupper
Free Disk Imaging/Clone Software
  • For backup method, you can enable Schedule backup and backup your disk with fixed intervals. At the same time, it will back up only changed files with Incremental backup after the full backup.
  • For clone method, you can clone all kinds of HDDs and SSDs, such as, different brands, different size, different interface, etc. If it is an SSD, you can further improve its performance.

And either way, thanks to its user-friendly interface, you can use it smoothly in Windows 8/10/11/7/XP/Vista. The same is true for the green hand. 

To get started, get the AOMEI Backupper Standard disk image software free download on your computer! For sever users, try AOMEI Backupper Server. 

Create Disk Image in Windows 11 with Disk Backup

You can follow the graphic tutorial below to create disk image by the best free disk image software in Windows 11. To improve data security, it's suggested to follow the 3-2-1 backup strategy - keep at least 3 copies of your data and save them in 2 different locations, at least one offsite.

Step 1. Launch the free imaging software for Windows 11, AOMEI Backupper Standard. Then, click Backup > Disk Backup.

Disk Backup

Step 2. Click Add Disk to choose the disk you want to make a disk image.

Add Disk

Step 3. Select a destination path to store your disk image. Click the inverted triangle and choose one of ways in the following:

>> Select a local path: It allows you to backup Windows 11 to an internal or external disk as long as it's recognized by Windows. And you need to connect it in advance.

>> Add Share or NAS Devices: It is to backup Windows 11 to network location or NAS. You need to add it by clicking this option, inputting the network location, and selecting a shared folder on it. 

Select Backup Destination

>> To backup system to cloud drive, click the folder-shapped button and select desktop folder of cloud drive you want to store backup image. 

Step 4. Click Schedule Backup and enable it, then select Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Event triggers or USB plug in feature.

In the previous 4 options, you need to ensure the external drive is always connected or you need to connect it before the backup start. To avoid this tedious work, it's suggested to prepare a larger USB drive and try the USB plug in feature. It will automatically backup disk when it's connected.

Schedule Settings

In the Professional or higher version, you can also try different backup and cleanup methods. 

>> To backup only changed files, both incremental backup (default) and differential backup are ok.

>> To automatically delete older backups, select one of the cleanup methods after enabling automatic backup cleanup. 

Backup Scheme

Besides, you can also click Options to write comments, set email notifications, choose the compression level and select the splitting ways you want for your disk image.

Step 5. Confirm the backup settings and click Start Backup to create a disk image in Windows 11. 

You can also use the Create Bootable Media function of AOMEI Backupper to create a bootable USB/CD/DVD, which can help you restore your computer when it fails to boot correctly.

In addition, backup is a good habit to protect data, but it's time-consuming to install backup software and perform further operations if you have multiple computers or servers. Given this, you can choose to create portable version via AOMEI Backupper Technician or TechPlus.

Tools Create Portable Version

Clone Hard Drive in Windows 11 for Quick Upgrade

If you want to clone disk to larger disk and then replace laptop HDD with SSD quickly, try Disk Clone feature in AOMEI Backupper Standard. The free version only supports cloning all the data disk and MBR system disk.

Thus, it's suggested to check the disk type (MBR or GPT) for the source and destination disk with the following steps. You will use the Windows built-in tool Disk Management for help. 

  • Press Win + R to open the Run window. Then, type diskmgmt.msc and hit OK to open disk management.
  • Then, right-click the disk you want to clone and select Properties in the pop-up window.
  • In the Properties window, select the Volume tab and confirm the partition style. It can be MBR (Master Boot Record) or GPT (GUID Partition Table).

Disk Partition Style

  • Similarly, check the disk partition tyle of the destination disk. If it is still MBR, you can clone hard drive in Windows 11 for free. If not, please upgrade to the professional version of this software and then clone GPT to GPT, GPT to MBR or vice versa. 

Then, follow the steps below to clone hard drive in Windows 11 for free.

Step 1. Open the AOMEI Backupper Standard, click Clone > Disk Clone.

Disk Clone

Step 2. Choose the disk on Windows 11 as the source disk. Then, click Next.

Select Source Disk

Step 3. Choose the destination disk to store the disk image. Then, click Next.

Select Destination Disk

Step 4. Confirm your operations and click Start Clone. If it is an SSD disk, click SSD Alignment to accelerate the reading and writing speed of it. 

Start Clone

Also, you can use either Sector By Sector Clone or Edit Partitions (supported by premium versions) during the cloning process. The previous one is to clone all sectors, whether they are used or not, so you won't miss any hidden partitions.

While for latter one, it is to change the partition size or convert disk type of the destination disk. Thus, you can avoid unallocated space after cloning and boot failure due to disk type.

  • Copy without resizing partitions: It will not resize the partition size.
  • Add unused space to all partitions: It will reallocate the unallocated space to each partition of the target disk, appropriate for the disk size.
  • Manually adjust partition size: It allows you to extend unallocated space to any partition on the destination disk you want. 
  •  Convert the destination disk from MBR to GPT: It helps to convert the partition style of the destination disk if it is different from the source disk. 

Add Unused Space

Disk Imaging vs Disk Cloning: Which Is Better?

Besides Disk Imaging, you may find there are many articles discussing Disk Cloning. It's another way to help you secure data on the disk or improve computer performance. But there are differences between them in the following chart:

  Disk Imaging Disk Cloning

Operating Principle

Include all the data on the disk and compress it to an image file and require a restore before replacing a disk. Keep data on the new disk with its original structure, so you can directly use it to replace a disk.
Data Integrity Backup data currently on the disk and keep changes made later if you enable a scheduled backup.  Only clone the entire disk and data currently on it. And all the data on the destination will be deleted.
Size The image is smaller since you can compress or split it, or choose to backup only changed files, etc. The image is exactly the same as old disk without compression or splitting, etc. 

Usage time

Takes twice as long and requires one temporary drive to store backup image.   Takes half the time and does not require extra device except for the target drive.

From the above, you can see the biggest advantages of disk imaging are data integrity and image size. While for disk cloning, the biggest advantage is its portability and less time usage. You can select one of them to start the process with the all-in-one complete software - AOMEI Backupper.

FAQs about Disk Imaging Software

#1. Does Windows 11 have disk imaging software?

Yes, Windows 11 comes with the Backup and Restore tool that can help you create disk images, with the "Create a system image" option.

#2. Does Windows 11 have built-in disk cloning software?

Unfortunately, Windows 11 has no native disk cloning software. But you can use AOMEI Backupper and other third-party tools to migrate hard drive to another disk or migrate HDD to SSD.

#3. What is the difference between disk image and disk backup?

A disk image usually refers to creating a full copy of an entire hard disk, while disk backup focuses on backing up individual files and folders. Both are protection methods for disk data and can be used according to different needs.


The disk image or clone will help you to solve problems with your computer and get it back to normal use in time. This article introduces you to the best free disk image or clone software for Windows 11 - AOMEI Backupper Standard. You can select one of them depending on your purpose, either long-term data protection or a quick upgrade. 

Besides, you can deploy images to multiple computers simultaneously as long as you use the Technician or Techplus edition. You can download this software to explore more useful features.

Clytze · Editor
Clytze, an editor at AOMEI Technology, is passionate about safeguarding your digital world. She dedicates her expertise to empower users like you in data security and recovery. She firmly believes that everyone should have the tools and knowledge to protect their digital assets through computer backup, seamless disk cloning, and efficient file synchronization. Clytze is your trusted guide on the journey to data safety.