Recovery disks don't do much and shouldn't really be counted on. You should have a two prong approach to recovery. First, you should have a bare-metal clone of your system using something like Acronis TrueImage, Norton Ghost or Paragon Hard Disk Manager. This is a low level copy of your entire drive, all of its contents including your data, and can be imaged back to a bare hard drive and work exactly like the original drive. The best cloning program is one that clones when your hard drive is off-line (not in use) necessitating the booting from external media such as CD/DVD, thumb-drive or external hard drive.
The problem with only relying on cloning is that you don't clone every day which risks data that has recently changed. For this, you need a daily backup routine. There are numerous software backup programs, and some like Paragon and Acronis include both a cloning software and a daily backup software component in one package.