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Cloning a hard drive - how to ??


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#1 Bat5454

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Posted 27 February 2011 - 08:09 AM

So I built a desktop a few years ago with a 160gb hard drive that the family is maxing out now.

Got a 500 gb drive to add to it, & just installed it as the 'E' drive.
But the original drive has the OS & everything on it, all the documents, music etc.

I want to clone the C to the E drive (got Acronis from the WD site), & make the new drive the 'system' drive.
But I'm not sure how to go about cloning the C to the E drive, then making the E drive the 'boot' drive.

If the new drive is still the 'E' drive (after cloning), won't all the applications that were originally installed on the C drive fail? or at least not find what they need?

Is there a way to clone the C (160 gb old drive) to the 'E' (500 gb new drive), then switch the drives so the E becomes the C & vice-versa?

thanks
BT

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#2 Crazy49er

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Posted 27 February 2011 - 12:42 PM

From my understanding of drive cloning, the files aren't just copied, they are "xeroxed" images of the hard drive platters segment by segment partition by partition. So when its done windows is still intact, all the programs are still functional... none of the files know any different, you just end up with mucho extra space on that new drive. However I believe the drive lettering stays as is so now E is just an exact copy of C at 12:42am or whenever you cloned it.

I know in windows 7, probably vista as well you can in fact change the letters of a drive in the computer management screen. I haven' tried it though.

I'm a noob at it so I'll let someone else chime in.

#3 tg1911

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Posted 27 February 2011 - 12:51 PM

Why not just transfer files to the new drive, to free up C:?
You can also move your My Documents folder, and any other users My Documents folder, to the new drive, as well.

Click Start, right-click My Documents, and select Properties.
Click the Target tab, if it's not already selected.
Click the Move button, click where you want to move My Documents to, to highlight it, then click OK.
Click Apply.
This will start the move, and leave "pointers" behind, so the Operating System will know where the files are.
After the move, when you click Start / My Documents, it will open the file from the location, where you moved it to.

You might want to consider making a folder, to move My Documents into.
One with your username on it.
If you just move it to a partition/drive, My Documents will occupy the whole partition/drive.


By creating it's own folder, My Documents will only occupy, that folder.
The folder with your name on it will be considered the My Documents folder, for you.
When you click My Documents, that's the folder that will open.

An example:
Say you're moving My Documents from C:, to G:
In G:, create a folder with your name.
G:/user

For other user accounts, just go to their accounts, and move them the same way.

NOTE:
This works for XP.
I'm not sure about Windows 7.
Maybe other members using 7 could verify if this procedure works, or not.
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#4 Crazy49er

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Posted 27 February 2011 - 06:04 PM

NOTE:
This works for XP.
I'm not sure about Windows 7.
Maybe other members using 7 could verify if this procedure works, or not.


That was quite informative, I never knew that.

Also I just tried it, in Windows 7 you have to find the My Documents file under your User Account (typically on the left side of a window) and select My Documents > Properties and Move will be listed under the Location tab.

#5 Bat5454

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 06:32 AM

Thanks all -

I took your advice to just move stuff over to the new hard drive rather than 'cloning'.
The main culprit was all the kids 'iTunes' music, so i had to use a slightly different method to move that (thru the iTunes application), but was able to free up a lot of space on the C drive.

Appreciate the help!
BT

#6 tg1911

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 08:01 AM

You're welcome, Bat5454.
Glad to hear you got it worked out. :thumbup2:
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