I haven't visited or posted on the forum in some time, for reasons I won't bore or offend you all with, and have just been reading the articles on the home page. However, I was very disappointed with much of what Chris had to say in this article.
First, backing up one's system by imaging is much easier to do than reinstalling the OS and programs. One also has to reinstall drivers and updates (updates alone can take hours) and reset a myriad of settings. This can be a daunting and time consuming task, especially if one has very many programs. Restoring with an image is much simpler and much faster.
I have seen may reports of problems from people using Win 7's imaging program and recommend using Macrium Reflect Free ( http:/www.macrium.com/reflectfree.aspx; see http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/73828-imaging-free-macrium.html for a good tutorial on how to use Macrium Reflect). It's reliable and easy to use. By default, it compresses the image by around 60%, which significantly reduces the size without affecting reliability. In fact, I've found using Macrium Reflect imaging and restoration to be far more reliable than System Restore and now keep System Restore disabled. Restoring an OS and programs from an image is a simple, one step process that takes only a few minutes compared to the hours a clean reinstall can take.
I make one image a week and also make an image just before making any changes to the OS or adding new programs. If things go pear shaped, it's easy to just restore the image to get back to where I was before. I only keep the most recent images plus the original images I made when I first installed the OS and basic programs on my machines so they don't eat up all that much room. Even with 62.5GB on the boot drive on my desktop machine, my images are only 25.6GB and take only 10 minutes or less to make and verify; a process that can run on its own without any attention from me; I can spend more time than that in the bathroom. HDD space is cheap nowadays so image size should not be a deterrent to imaging, especially if one use some discretion on how many to keep on hand.
While images are best for backing up the OS and programs, they are too bulky for use for data backup so I image only my boot drive on my desktop machine and the C: partition on my single drive notebooks. I use a folder/file syncing program, Freefile Sync ( http://sourceforge.net/projects/freefilesync/ ) to back up my data drives (D: partition on my notebooks). That gives me a backup I can just plug into my computer and keep chugging along on if a data drive ever goes belly up. I keep two backups at home for each data drive in use and two more in a safe deposit box at my credit union, which get swapped out with the ones at home at least once a month (I save my images to a data drive so they will get backed up).
Contrary to what Chris stated (and, normally, the man is spot on with his advice), imaging definitely should be part of one's regular backup strategy!