Re: The Proper Way To Backup Windows 10 When It Goes Kaput
Personally the only thing that I would back are my personal files. All the programs including the operating, system obviously, can be reinstalled. My reasoning for doing it this way is, first off. I am capable of reinstalling software and secondly I do not really know why my computer suddenly decided to die (this is hypothetical as I have never had a crash I can also take my hard drives out and connect them to another computer and retrieve stuff that way assuming no mechanical faults.) So to circumvent any nasties I would do a complete reinstall.
I would suggest you do something similar but make a USB stick or DVD backup of your initial install before you have put any personal files on. That can be your fall back and then regularly back up your personal files.
Oh just one other thing. I would NEVER do an upgrade. I do appreciate that this is, perhaps, that only way you could have got Windows 10 on but doing that way takes all the junk that was on your old Windows 7 system across to your new operating system including, possibly, innappropriate hardware drivers. You say you had a stable Windows 7 and I believe that but you just do not know what nasties are lurking in the back ground waiting to pounce in your Windows 10.
As far as how are these images accessed after a major crash? Well computers these days can be set to boot from either a DVD or a USB drive. If that media has been set as recovery media then the recovery process is initiated. To boot from an alternative boot device, on most computers, hitting the F12 key will/should give you more boot options.
I have to say that if you cannot afford the time lost or your business relies heavily on your computer I would get down and dirty and learn how to do all this maintenance stuff or employ someone who does know. Most importantly though BACKUP, BACKUP and BACKUP AGAIN. Even if it's only your personal files that you are backing up. I had a chap come into the shop a few years ago in a right state. His computer had died and he said he had £250,000 worth of business on it. His hard drive had died electrically and there was nothing I could do other than suggest he sent his hard drive to a specialist data recovery company. They did get most of his stuff back but he paid an awful lot of money for them to do that. In his case, probably worth it, but generally it isn't worth the money.