Active@Disk Image by LSoft Technologies is a disk cloning tool for Windows that can make a copy of any PC disk, be it a standard hard disk (HDD), solid-state drive (SSD), USB, CD, DVD or Blu-ray, and create an image that can be used for backups, upgrades, and disk duplication tasks.
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In this Active@Disk Image review, we cover its plans, pricing, features, and interface and answer the question of whether it ranks among the best disk cloning software packages available for Windows.
Plans and pricing
Active@Disk Image is available for both personal, business, and enterprise use, with each category having both standard and professional licenses available. There is also a Lite freeware version of the software, which has limited features.
Pricing for Personal licenses goes from $39 for Standard up to $69 for Professional and can be used on up to three PCs. The pricing for Business licenses goes from $49 up to $99, with one license per installation.
Enterprise pricing goes from $2,595 up to $5,199, but for an unlimited number of installations. So, if your organization has more than 52 computers that the software would need to be installed on, you’d be better off getting an Enterprise license.
All products are covered by one year of free updates and support, with a 30-day return policy.
Active@Disk Image is designed to back up computers running Windows operating systems, with native support for all versions as far back as XP SP3 and Server 2003. It can also back up older versions of Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, and Solaris for PC if using Active@ Boot Disk Lite, another product from LSoft Technologies.
The Lite version’s limited feature set includes restoring disk image backups, a choice of image compression options, the ability to mount images as virtual drives, support for basic or dynamic volumes, and password protection.
Stepping up to the standard editions, all the Lite features are included, as well as support for RAID, scheduled backups, and the ability to create incremental backups, rescue bootable media, and do sector-by-sector copy.
The Professional editions include Windows server support, image encryption, email notifications, incremental scheduled backups, and scripting abilities.
Interface and in use
The first thing you’ll notice about Active@Disk Image is that its interface is quite dated, sharing more similarities with the interface of Windows XP than with the latest versions that use Metro UI.
Despite the look, most of the tool’s operations are easy to use, with wizards to guide you through each step—at least, for the Disk Operations. We found the Partition Manager listed under Service Utilities to be less intuitive and more targeted at advanced users.
If you’re using the Lite version of the software, Create Boot Disk is available as an option but is not actually included, as clicking on the icon will inform you.
Technical support for Active@Disk Image is available by phone and email, or you can create a ticket after you’ve logged in to the Customer Communication Center. LSoft Technologies is based in Canada, and it’s not clear from the website what hours the phone line is operated.
There is a product FAQ page with links to help articles, but it’s not searchable, and the layout of the questions doesn’t make it easy to find what you’re looking for.
There is a whole host of other software companies that provide disk management software solutions for Windows.
For an alternative that looks like the latest version of Windows, there is Paragon Hard Disk Manager. It offers both home and business plans but doesn’t have editions with different feature sets, with all plans offering the same features. The starting price for the Home plan is $79.95 but drops if you purchase more licenses. Business licenses run from $99 for a single workstation up to $899 for the Enterprise plan, which covers multiple devices.
Another option with a more modern interface is MiniTool Partition Wizard. It is also available for home and business use and comes with a free version for home users. Home plans cost between $59 and $129, with the higher-end plan coming with free lifetime upgrades. Business plans go from $159 up to $699, with the higher-end plan licensed for 299 PCs or servers.
Active@Disk Image has most of the features that you’d expect from disk management software programs but doesn’t have anything that sets it apart from the pack, besides possibly having a more dated interface than many others.
The parts of the program that are driven by wizards are intuitive enough, but there are certain tasks that are targeted at more advanced users.
Pricing for home and business users is reasonable, but enterprise pricing isn’t as cheap as some of the competition. Support options also aren’t as comprehensive or helpful as others we’ve reviewed. Overall, Active@Disk is a perfectly fine option for general disk management, but if you have more advanced needs, you might want to look at the alternatives.
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