Image restore ... but can't boot from CD

Hi! I'm new here. My name is John Todd. How are you?

I apologize if this has been covered already. I tried the search and browsed a lot but couldn't find the answer. I think it is because I don't quite know what to ask for.

Here is my problem:

I need to re-image my main C:. I'm running Win7 64b Ultimate. I have a great image on another hard drive.

Problem is, I cannot boot from CD or USB anymore. They used to work, but something is wonky. Finances are too tight to purchase anything.

I can boot just fine into C:. No problems there. But when I tell it to restore the image, it tells me it cannot restart into Windows Recovery Environment. So much for that.

But get this: I have a dual-boot set up, where the other OS is a plain-jane Win7 64b Ultimate OS. It's a small install with just Firefox and a couple of other things. I can also boot into that one just fine.

So my question is this:

How can I boot into the small install and use it to restore the Image to the other C: drive?

IOW, using 2nd boot to restore the Image to 1st boot?


Senior Member
Basically, if you want to restore from image, you would need an image to restore from. You cannot do image restoration using an installed OS. Creating another installation from an existing OS is called cloning. You would need first to create an image of the 2nd boot to a separate partition on your hard drive that you can use to restore the first boot. But really, what is the purpose of having the same installation twice? and on the same hard drive?

If your PC is not booting up from CD or USB, that means the Legacy Support is disabled on your BIOS. You have to boot up on BIOS and enable it.

Last edited:
OK, I'll check out the BIOS settings.


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
Something you might think about, when you re-image a system using the Windows utility, it only restores the critical partitions and ones you chose to include in the image. If you have a partition on that hard drive, which was not included in the image, it will be gone.

You do have to re-image from the Windows Recovery Environment with an image on a separate physical hard drive from the one being re-imaged. I will assume you have that situation, so we need to get you into the Windows Recovery Environment. What type of boot media do you have, are they recovery media or install media? Are the media you are trying to boot listed in the Boot Device Menu, in the configuration your system is installed with (MBR or UEFI)?

I have a CD Rom and 2 DVD drives. None of them are bootable anymore. They show up when the BIOS does it's scan early on, but the BIOS won't actually boot from them. None of my optical media will boot, not even Memtest.

Windows can see them, but forever gives me the 'please insert a disk' dialog even when one is in there. What disk doesn't matter, seems nothing works.

I also tried Linux and had the same problems. From this I conclude that it is the drives. I have no other problems. This computer is in my recording studio where it works up a sweat daily. No problems at all. Just them darn drives.


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
I have seen folks that had software that created Virtual DVDs and CDs have such problems, but since the DVD and USB devices are so common, they usually work fairly well.

Have they always behaved this way, or is it something recent?

The drives work normally otherwise, they just will not boot your media? About how old is the system?


Extraordinary Member
Premium Supporter
I suggest you unplug all drives, then test them one at a time. It could be one of them causes trouble, as to cause others not to work. And since the whole computer is integrated, disk players can affect USB too. If you have SATA cables, be sure not to twist them or force them in 90 degrees, they need "air". Preferably, you could test them in another computer?

On the other hand, I do find it unlikely that two drives stop working at the same time, independently, adding USB to it. I would look for the problem in the background, like Saltgrass writes, How old is the system? Something may simply have blown on your motherboard.

Another option could be your PSU = Power Supply Unit. Old and getting grey, perhaps loosing vitality? Loosing power in a computer means... loosing.

A third option could be, motherboard drivers have become corrupt. That could be because of a power failure that knocked something out, or a virus attack, or something. The BIOS can also be attacked, showing "whatever". I recommend a full scan with your Antivirus, plus Malwarebytes.

Windows problems are one thing. But since you can't boot from BIOS, it's another thing. A BIOS update?

It could be a power supply problem - it's happened before around here. Craptastic power company and electrical storms that are compressed across a 500 foot bluff. I've seen sideways lightning and ball lightning. We always power down at the first sign. But I have been replacing power supplies every couple of years.

This system is a "continuous build" with the most recent core upgrade being 2009. It's a Phenom II quad core with 8Gig RAM. I built it myself. It could be a general fault. This computer does get the crap beat out of it almost every day in the studio. Constant streaming disk access when recording and mixing, etc. It's also my "everything" computer, meaning that during breaks I'm watching movies on it or playing Quake 3:Arena. Yes, I still play Quake 3:Arena.

Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll try them all.

The optical drives are IDE.


Extraordinary Member
Premium Supporter
One general idea could be to protect your computer(s) with a Surge Protector, like the one I have is called. It protects against lightning = sudden overpower, and the one I have protects Ethernet too. The cost was an amazing €9 = slightly over $10. Won't help now, but a cheap insurance regarding future.

Hope you get it solved, and running. :)

Got the surge protector. Basic stuff.

IDK why power supplies just go away...

(hey, that sounds like song lyrics)

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