Do I need WINPE?
QI’ve seen Macrium Reflect mentioned in your pages many times, so thought I’d give it a go. I downloaded it OK, but as soon as I tried to install it I was presented with a box asking me to ‘Confirm download’, stating that it wanted to download a component called Microsoft WINPE that’s hundreds of megabytes in size. What is this? Do I need it to run Reflect? Martin Hook
AWINPE is short for ‘Windows Preinstallation Environment’. It is not an integral part of Reflect, and is therefore not required in order to run or use the program. However, a key feature of Reflect does rely on WINPE — the ability to create a rescue disc or USB stick.
What WINPE specifically allows Reflect to do is create a self-contained version of itself that you can burn to a CD or DVD, or copy to a USB memory stick. If your PC ever goes wrong and won’t start, then you can use your rescue disc or stick to get it started, as WINPE provides a strippeddown, bootable version of Windows that then allows Reflect itself to run. So, while you don’t absolutely need WINPE, we would very much recommend that you allow it to install.
If you’re worried about disk space, you can choose where the WINPE files are stored. In Reflect, open the Other Tasks menu, then select Edit Defaults. Now, at the top, click the Advanced button and, on the left, select Macrium Reflect PE Files. Finally, in the right-hand pane, tick the box of your preferred drive and then click OK (see screenshot). To create a rescue disc or stick, click the disc icon at the top left and then follow the prompts.