Customer Review

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good set of features, but expensive for home edition, 30 Jan 2011
This review is from: Acronis Disk Director 11 Home Edition (PC) (CD-ROM)
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Review for Acronis Disk Director 11 Home Edition

i have always found the basic partitioning tools avialable on Windows very lacking. There was some good tools round such as PowerQuests Partition Magic one of the best all time classics, was intially the only one that could resize existing partitions on the fly and this was like a decade ago. Unfortunately the company disappeared a long time ago so I was interested to see how the latest Partitioning Tools stood up to it. As with any Partitioning Tools, you can end up inadvertantly deleting, loosing or messing up operating systems or data, so make sure you are familiar with partitioning in general before you use these tools!

Installation was a surprise, requiring a ridiculously large serial key, and what is it these days for many software titles to come without printed manuals ?!?! This came with a short quickstart guide and online help, but with specialist technical software such as this would surely merit some printed documentation? Maybe its just me with high expectations?

The program supports all the usual formats ntfs, fat, fat32, ext2,ext3, reiserfs etc, although notably lacked the Mac file system and other lesser used formats such as xfs etc. Good see the program supports basic,simple, striped and mirror volumes, although in my test I only used ordinary volumes.

Usage wise it looks like a coloured version of the xp windows disk management tools albeit with a lot more features than the standard windows disk management tool, but having used parition magic over the years I could help feeling the gui could have been a little more intuitive - may not be so freindly to users not used to partitioning tools, although each operation opens a wiazrd to take you to the relevant task, so maybe its not so bad?

I didnt go down the recovery disk route as trying to create a Windows PE based recovery disk requires 1Gb+ of the Windows Automated Install kit - it kind of makes my head spin when for example recovery disks for PM were two 1.44Mb floppy disks - one to boot into dos (you could use your own ones for this) and the other to run a 500kb dos recovery version of the program!! It wouldnt be so bad if the newer programs offered strides more functionality than the older tools.

Some of the features in Disk Director are simply a front end for standard Windows features. For example, Disk Director includes an option to defrag your drives, but this actually just runs the Windows defragment utility via command line.The Acronis OS selector looks much better than the old parition magic boot switcher. Im old school so I still prefer grub or lilo to handle that side of things. Operation wise it is very similar to Powerquests PM.

For any other old timers this tool is slightly better than the older tools as it does purport to support hard drives larger than 2Tb and obviously the older tools will usually only support MBR (master boot record) whereas this supports the newer (well not that new) GUID parition table type disks (GPT), although I suspect most will still use the MBR type volumes.

Although Acronis is a well known brand name, it does not compare well price wise for home usage - take a look at Easeus Partition Magic (free home edition which offers most, but not all of the features in disk director) and profesional Easeus PM version at a similar price to this product. Intrestingly enough Easus is more similar to the original PowerQuest Partition Magic. Users may want to review easues PM or take the free version for a spin first, or look at the other good alternatives such as Paragon which also offer free and professional editions.

Overall not a bad program if you need to partition a lot, however I think these are a set of tools that have limited appeal as most users will not need to manage partitions on a daily basis - not recomended for non technical users, unless you read up on this first, because of the inherent hazards of partitioning.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 10 Jun 2011 23:29:07 BDT
Thanks for the Easeus tip. I've been using Powerquest Partition Magic 7 with XP for years with no problems. But am always on the lookout for alternatives, especially if free.
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