35681: Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud, Acronis Cyber Backup: Restoring to Dissimilar Hardware with Universal Restore

Last update: 08-07-2021

You need to use Acronis Universal Restore to recover the system backup of one machine to another one with dissimilar hardware.

This article applies to:

  • Acronis Backup 11.5 prior to Update 5 (Acronis Backup & Recovery 11.5)
  • Acronis Backup 11.5 Build 43916
  • Acronis Backup 11.5 Build 43956
  • Acronis Backup 11.5 Build 43994
  • Acronis Backup (Advanced) 11.7 Build 44397
  • Acronis Cyber Backup 12, 12.5
  • Acronis Cyber Protect 15
  • Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud/ Acronis Cyber Backup Cloud


Acronis Universal Restore is the Acronis proprietary technology that helps recover and boot up an operating system on dissimilar hardware or a virtual machine. Universal Restore handles differences in devices that are critical for the operating system start-up, such as storage controllers, motherboard or chipset.

Universal Restore is extremely useful in the following scenarios:

  1. Instant recovery of a failed system on different hardware.
  2. Hardware-independent cloning and deployment of operating systems.
  3. Physical-to-physical, physical-to-virtual and virtual-to-physical machine migration.

Acronis Universal Restore is a module that allows changing Windows Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL.dll) and install mass storage boot device drivers into the system.

It installs boot device drivers (e.g. hard drive or RAID controller drivers) into the system during the recovery process, so that the operating system can boot from this boot device. If there are proper NIC drivers present in the folder with the drivers, Acronis Universal Restore will copy them into the restored system and will schedule their installation on Windows boot-up.

(!) Do not use Windows\System32\drivers folder as drivers source.

(!) All the other drivers (e.g. video and sound card drivers, plug and play drivers) are not installed by Acronis Universal Restore, as they can be installed in Windows after the successful migration.