In another forum, www.hardwareguys.com
, the Ahead products, Nero and InCD, have the favorable consensus. I would expect that to be a generally widespread consensus also.
I use the Ahead S/W, bundled with my drive, and am quite satisfied with it. Actually, having used it previously as it was also bundled with a previous drive, it became a yes/no criterion on the selection of my current drive.
No, Nero does not have a convenient, easy to use, boot partition-backup-disaster recovery-restore capability. I use the Dantz Retrospect for that purpose. There may be others out there that are equally capable, I just have no knowledge of them.