By Teresa / Last Updated September 21, 2017

When using Windows 7 System Image Recovery?

System Image Recovery is a repair option in System Recovery Options which allows you to overwrite all the information on your current hard drives using a system images created at a previous date. In the condition when your computer corrupted and cannot boot you may need this repair tool to recover the hard drive. If you have a system image just created right after you installed Windows you may use this option to reset it to original state. This option will work only if there is a system image of Windows OS, and luckily backup Windows 7 before reinstalling or re-imaging is not a difficult business. Now that you have acknowledged the usage of Windows System Image Recovery, follow this guide to learn how to use System Image Recovery in Windows 7.

Use Windows 7 System Image Recovery to restore a hard disk

Preparation: the device (USB drive, external hard drive, or CD) that stores your Windows 7 system image and the Windows 7 installer disc.

1. Connect the device to your PC and boot Windows via the installation disc. You may need to press some key to boot from installation CD or DVD after entering the BIOS.

2. Click “Next” in “Install Windows” interface.

3. Now click “Repair your computer” in the lower left corner instead of “Install now”. Choose Windows 7 to repair in the next window.

Repair your computer Windows 7

4. There you have got five options in the “System Recovery Options”. Click “System Image Recovery” and it will automatically locate the available system image stores on your device here.

System image recovery

5. If you stores the system image on network, you can click “Select a system image” to type in its path. Then click “Next”.

6. If you want Windows 7 system image restore on new hard drive, you may need to format and repartition it in this window. The “Install drivers…” option is used to install drivers that needed for your OS yet don’t build in Windows. For example, if you restore system image from network, you may need to install a set of NIC drivers. Otherwise, you are likely to get an error message reads: The network location cannot be reached.

7. This is the confirm information. Click “Finish” and “Yes” in the next window to let it continue. By default, it will restart after completion. Take your time and it may cost hours.

Alternative to Windows 7 System Image Recovery – AOMEI Backupper

This System Image Recovery is really a useful tool, yet sometimes it won’t restore, or you might get the error says no disk can be used. These issues happen randomly. However, Windows 7 system image restore process commonly slow is true. This is the occasion that you need professional third party software.

AOMEI Backupper Professional is the perfect Backup and Recovery software you’re looking for. It allows you to configure all of above settings under Windows environment, so it is fine if you don’t have Windows 7 installer disc/CD/DVD in hand. If the computer fails to boot, you can ask its “Create Bootable Rescue Media” feature for help. Besides, you can use this software to restore Windows 7 system image to larger or smaller hard drive as you wish. AOMEI Backupper is also a good alternative to Windows 7 Backup and Restore utility. Its user-friendly and graphical interface is suitable for all users range from novice to IT expert. Download its free trial to have a try.

Steps to restore system image in Windows 7

Step1. Connect the device that contains your system image to the PC. Install and start AOMEI Backupper. Click Restore and then click Path to manually navigate the backup image if AOMEI Backupper hasn’t detected it. Then click Yes in the confirm window.



Step2. Choose the right Backup Point and click Next.

Backup Point

Step3. Here is the Operation Summary. Click Start Restore if nothing goes wrong.

Start Restore


  • This system restore process will be completed under restart mode and it will enter that mode automatically.
  • If you plan to restore Windows 7 system image to different computer, check theEnable Universal Restorebox in the lower-left corner.

It is easy to use Windows 7 System Image Recovery to restore a hard disk when you actually do it. However, when this tool disappoints you, you still have spare solution AOMEI Backupper Professional. This software makes restoring fairly easier and clearer. Other than restoring, AOMEI Backupper has embedded with many helpful features. For instance, you can clone boot drive to SSD when upgrading hard drives. If the hard drive damages a little, this program can still work on cloning hard drive with bad sectors.