Acronis True Image 2017 is a powerful collection of backup tools that will give you a comfortable feeling of data security. The automatic backup and multiple backup options help you safeguard your precious and irreplaceable photos, videos and work files.
I have been looking forward to reviewing Acronis True Image 2017 for a long time. So the question is whether it was worth the wait?
And yes, Acronis True Image 2017 was indeed worth waiting for, and I have to say that I love this release! I have been using the beta version for a while, and after purchasing the polished official release, I am absolutely convinced that this is the best release since ATI 2014.
In this Acronis True Image 2017 review I will walk you through the new features as well as the evergreen core backup features.
Table of Contents
What´s new in Acronis True Image 2017
This is indeed a very interesting release that offers a new and fast user interface and a couple of extremely handy new features.
Obviously there is a limit to what new features you can expect from a backup program. A backup software has a very specific purpose which ATI has covered for several years already.
Even so, the increased use and public acceptance of cloud based storage security as well as the explosion of smart mobile devices, has enabled Acronis to add a number of new features to ATI since ATI 2015.
Most noticeably Acronis True Image 2017 has been developed and expanded to include:
- Crisp corporate style design update
- Mobile backup to your local computer
- Search and browse your backup for the specific files
- Facebook backup (Acronis Cloud feature)
- Flexible pricing options for adding Acronis Cloud to your setup
NEW! Look and feel of Acronis True Image 2017
The design of Acronis True Image 2017 is a return to a fully professional looking user interface design. It looks very sleek and it is has a nice and tight corporate look.
It also feels more responsive than its recent predecessors. I was not particularly bothered by a slower user interface earlier, but the improvement is clearly noticeable.
NEW! Mobile to local backup
Along the way you will find a number of little new features, but by far the coolest new feature is the mobile to local backup feature.
This feature enables you to create a backup of your mobile devices to your computer via Wi-Fi simply by scanning a QR code with the camera in your smart phone or tablet.
You simply download the app in the Google play store or in the Apple app store. In the settings area you can then modify the backup path of the mobile backup to your local or network storage.
The whole thing is surprisingly smooth. I say surprisingly because the mobile Acronis Cloud 2016 backup experience wasn´t particularly convincing. The backup was painfully slow and the app was of a questionable quality.
However, Acronis seems to have cleaned up the app perfectly and the mobile to local backup feature is a real treat!
The feature has a couple of limitations though
- You can´t access your files on your computer because the backup can be seen only as one single closed file. You can only see your backup from the mobile device. If you want more control, you need to use the Acronis Cloud option.
- During my testing I only managed to back up the data from the internal phone memory and not the memory card. This feels like an error or perhaps the app is limited by my pre-historic Samsung Galaxy S2. If you own a smartphone with only one kind of storage, such as the iPhone, this will not be an issue.
UPDATE: Browsing of local mobile backups is possible with the new Premium Edition of Acronis True Image 2017.
NEW! Search and browse backup contents
You can now perform searches of your backups when you need to recover particular files and folders. This can be a nice time saver if you have a lot of files and especially if you are using an intuitive naming convention for your files.
It is also possible to browse the backup manually if you know where to find what you need. This was impossible until the 2016 release.
NEW! Flexible pricing options
Acronis True Image 2017 is now avialable in flexible price and feature combinations which can be selected in an intuitive purchase area on the Acronis website.
You have three basic models to choose from:
- 1 time purchase
- 1 year subscription
- 2 year subscription
You then have the option to buy 1, 3 or 5 licenses with the chosen purchase model with a significant bonus when you buy more licenses.
With the two subscription models you also have the option to add up to 5 tb of cloud storage. There is no discount when you buy more storage space. Every 1tb addition adds the same price increase.
It seems that Acronis no longer offers unlimited cloud storage with any product.
Upgrade discount is only available with the 1 time purchase option.
Which option might suit you?
Are you new to Acronis True Image? This is how it works
ATI is a powerful and feature packed backup suite that offers a premium selection of backup options such as file backup, disk images, cloning, mobile backup and cloud storage integration.
These are the three main features of Acronis True Image:
- File backup
- Disk imaging
- Clone disk
Even though Acronis Cloud is becoming an increasingly large part of ATI, it is still an addition that has to be purchased separately. If you want to learn more about Acronis Cloud please check out my full Acronis Cloud review: Acronis Cloud Review – Gimmick or Awesome?
The traditional file backup feature is probably the mostly used feature of the program.
This works pretty much as you would expect and is basically a 3 step procedure:
- Source selection. (The ”Files and folders” option)
- Destination selection. (Choose between Acronis cloud, external USB drive and browsing for local or network storage).
- Setting up backup options such as scheduling, backup scheme selection and advanced options.
After choosing what to back up and where to keep the backup you have access to a wide selection of options to decide how and when your backup should run.
In the backup options area you have 5 areas:
- Scheduling of your automatic backup
- Backup scheme
This is where you control when your backup should run. This area is pretty self-explanatory.
This area is where you setup how the backup should be created. In here you have a number of so called schemes at your disposal. These schemes determine how the backup compares your data and how the files are being saved.
A couple of schemes are pre-configured for your convenience and the way they work is nicely explained by a little animation right there in the scheme selection area. These two schemes are the:
- Single version scheme
- Version chain scheme
The next couple of presets are probably the most commonly used and apart from their initial setting you can modify those to fit your particular situation. These are the:
- Incremental scheme
- Differential scheme
The last option is the custom scheme where you can setup all the previous schemes manually as well as your own preferred backup behavior.
The difference between the incremental and differential backup scheme can be difficult to understand at first. My written ATI 2015 review contains a lengthy explanation of the differences, but my ATI 2016 video review and tutorial is probably my best attempt at explaining the difference.
A more advanced, but no less awesome, feature is the disk image feature. This is one of the core features of Acronis True Image 2017.
This is an important term to know when you work with Acronis True Image. The reason is mainly that this feature is, in fact, no longer called a disk image within the program. Instead it now goes under the terms:
- “Entire PC”
- Disks and partitions
This deserves special attention when you start using ATI 2017, because the nature of a disk image is that it contains every single bit on your hard drive, including the operating system, programs, drivers, files etc.
Added to that, it attempts to back up all the files that it can access locally, from USB drives and from network drives. This can add up to a significant amount of data as you can see on the image below where the “Entire PC” wants to back up no less than 5.5 tb including my OS.
It is worth calling your attention to this “Entire PC” feature because its prominent position in ATI can led you to think that it is a file backup feature which it really isn´t. I will describe the pitfalls of this feature in depth in the article mentioned below.
If you are unfamiliar with the term “Disk image”, I have a lengthy article on the subject and the inner workings of Acronis True Image in the works. I will link to the article here when it becomes available.
Clone disk is a tool that you use when you need to copy your main drive to another HDD. The clone disk program is part of the ”more tools” selection and is actually an independent program.
A typical scenario these days is SSD migration which is when you want to upgrade your old mechanical HDD to a SSD drive. Once you make sure that your new (and usually smaller) SSD drive has enough room for your data, the cloning/migration procedure is quite simple.
What I didn´t like
Progression bar and time indicator malfunction
I am somewhat disappointed to see that the backup progress bar and ”remaining time” indicator are still not working in Acronis True Image 2017. This was an issue in ati 2015 and ati 2016 as well which adds to my surprise.
At least on my computer the time indicator jumps to ”less than one minute” within the first minute of the backup procedure and remains there for the remainder of the backup. The progress bar behaves in a similar way and simply jumps ahead to indicate wrongly that the backup will finish momentarily.
However, since I use ATI all the time, I know how long my backup jobs are running and I consider this to be a surprising, but insignificant shortcoming.
Acronis Cloud integration
As I have also mentioned in my Acronis Cloud review earlier, I think the cloud workflow is somewhat confusing at first.
For some reason you quickly end up with a bunch of browser tabs and you even need to sign into Acronis cloud even though you access the cloud from your local Acronis True Image 2017 which is a bit annoying.
Since Acronis is clearly capable of programming software you would think that it would be possible to create a centralized online experience that you can use from one browser tab. This would suit the product rather well.
At the time of writing I was unable to back up the contents from the memory card in my phone. I will test this feature with other smart phones as soon as possible and keep you posted on the results.
I would have liked to be able to access the files in my local mobile backup from the computer itself.
I am really impressed with the Acronis True Image 2017 release and I can recommend the program without hesitation. I believe that it even warrants an upgrade from ATI 2016. This will also help you maintain your upgrade capable status.
ATI 2017 feels very crisp and professional and even though Acronis categorize it as a personal/home user product, the backup and disk image suite can hold its own even in a small business environment.
The new design, improved user experience, and new features are convincing improvements that increases the pleasure of using Acronis True Image 2017 on a daily basis.
There is still room for improvement in a couple of places, but all in all I think this is a convincing and strong program release that will help you or your company by keeping your valuable data safely secured.
- Crisp professional looking new design
- Fast user interface
- Cool mobile to local backup feature
- Excellent price vs. performance relationship
- Android app has been cleaned up and now works convincingly
- Attractive subscription options
- Acronis Cloud integration could be better