Windows 8 Create an Image with Recimg.exe

Microsoft’s New Command to Recreate a Windows 8 Image

Here is a new utility in Windows 8 called RecImg.  Its strategy is to rebuild your Windows 8 machine, but to keep all the data.  This is rather like System Restore in previous Microsoft operating systems.

The method I recommend is to run a built-in command called RecImg, which creates an install.wim file.  Then refresh your Windows 8 machine via the Control Panel.

Refresh Windows 8 with Recimg


How to Create a New Image

You can use a command-line tool called to Recimg to set a new Refresh Point.

This is the command which I ran from PowerShell

RecImg -CreateImage D:\Backup\

Note 1:  This command often fails with an error message of: FAILED. HRESULT – 0x80070057

I have also seen: 0x8007010b which is also an invalid directory.

Solution: Create the directory before you run the command, in this case I made the directory called D:\Backup.

Note 2: You could launch cmd.exe (Run as administrator) and then type the above command.

Windows 8 Image Successfully Created

C:\Windows\system32>recimg -CreateImage d:\backup\

RecImg Tool v1.0 – Captures WIM Image

***** Running WIM Capture. Press [ESC] to cancel *****

WIM File – d:\backup\install.wim
OS Path – C:




Completed in 1678977 ms


Result! Successfully Created Install.wim

Create Windows 8 Image with Recimg

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How to Refresh Windows 8 Using Install.wim

To refresh your Windows 8 machine launch the Control Panel, System, File History, Refresh your PC. 

Create Windows 8 File History

Warning Click Refresh (and not Reset)

The ‘Reset’ feature removes all files and applications, its purpose is to create a clean install of the Windows 8 Operating System, what I suggest instead is the Refresh setting, because it preserves your data and settings.

Create Windows 8 Image Recovery

Note: Naturally you must have already created the image file called install.wim.

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More About Windows 8 Refresh

The ideas is to start again with a fresh install of the operating system.  However the improvement over System Restore is that Refresh keeps your Windows settings, and apps. The result that Windows 8 is working perfectly once more and none of your configuration settings or data are changed.

Wireless network configurations, BitLocker and drive letters are maintained.  However, display settings, and Windows Firewall configurations are reset because they could have been part of the original problem to cause you to try a refresh.  I have a whole page on : Refresh Your PC

Plan B – ‘File Recovery’ Creates a System Image

This is how to create a system image in Windows 8.Windows 8 Create System Image

  • Open the Control Panel
  • Search for File Recovery
  • Select ‘Create system image’
    (Key point See screenshot)
  • Choose where to save your image
  • Click Next
  • Verify settings, Click start backup
  • After the backup completes, it asks to create a system repair disc, click Yes.
  • Insert a blank DVD into the disk drive
  • Click Create disc.

More Windows 8 How To Articles

Summary of Recreating a Windows 8 Image

The purpose of Microsoft’s new feature for Windows 8 is to recover from a hard drive failure.  The key command line executable called recimg.  Remember that folder must exist before you create the image.  Once you have succeed in creating an image, you can refresh via the Control Panel.

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Microsoft Windows 8 Install Related Topics

How to Install Windows 8  • Windows 8 Live ID Logon  • Windows 8 Uninstall  • Engineers Tookit

Windows 8 Overview  • Windows 8 Hyper-V  • Join Windows 8 to Domain  • Windows 8 Dual Boot

Refresh Your PC Without Affecting Your Files  • Windows 8 RecImg – Recreate Image  • Win 8 Install