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Cloning a HDD - which (free) software to us? (For W7 laptop)


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#1 iamafreeman

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 07:27 AM

hi, everyone

 

I would be grateful for help in finding some free "simple" software to use to clone my existing HDD so that I can have an exact copy including Windows 7 in case of a major failure or I suppose a fatal virus!!!

 

New to all this so hoping it's not too difficult or technical.

 

Advice gratefully received. Thanks.



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#2 JohnC_21

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 11:22 AM

I believe what you want to do is create a complete disk image to an external USB drive using software like Macrium Reflect Free. This software will let you create a bootable disk or USB flash drive that will let you recover the image in case of disk failure or the inability to boot to Windows. The program will also let you mount the image as a virtual drive so you can explore the image and copy any files from the image file to your hard drive.

 

Windows 7 has it's own ability to do a System Image. You would need to first create a System Repair Disk. This will let you recover the image in case the computer does not boot. If you can boot you would tap F8 at boot and select Repair Computer and select System Image Recovery.


Edited by JohnC_21, 18 May 2015 - 11:29 AM.


#3 RolandJS

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 11:34 AM

And, use Macrium Reflect to routinely make partition images of your data partition.  While your OS can be reinstalled, un-backed-up data cannot be reinstalled, rather, it can only be recreated.


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#4 iamafreeman

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 01:53 PM

hi, guys

 

As I said new to this so much of that went over my head!!

 

I want to replace my 120gig HDD with a 500 gig HDD and clone/copy the whole thing including W7 video, photos etc from the smaller HDD to the new larger one. 

 

I'm assuming the original 120 gig drive would be available to simply put back in and boot up as normal if the 500 gig drive ever failed or got a nasty virus.

 

I was working on the basis of buying a USB powered caddy and putting the  new HDD in the laptop the old one in the caddy and "copying" everything over to the new one.  is that possible?

 

Sorry if i am being a bit dumb but it is new to me. 

 

Regards.



#5 RolandJS

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 01:57 PM

"...and "copying" everything over to the new one.  is that possible?"

Via cloning or restoring an image - should work.


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#6 iamafreeman

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Posted 18 May 2015 - 10:59 PM

"...and "copying" everything over to the new one.  is that possible?"

Via cloning or restoring an image - should work.

 

hi

 

What free software do you think would achieve that and is it fairly simple for a novice like me to achieve?

 

Cheers. 



#7 Platypus

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 02:25 AM

Apart from the Macrium Reflect already mentioned, what brand(s) are the drives in question? Both Western Digital and Seagate provide limited versions of Acronis TrueImage downloadable from their support websites. This offers imaging and cloning capability, for the WD version a WD drive must be present, the Seagate DiscWizard supports Seagate, Maxtor and Samsung drives.


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#8 iamafreeman

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 05:11 AM

Apart from the Macrium Reflect already mentioned, what brand(s) are the drives in question? Both Western Digital and Seagate provide limited versions of Acronis TrueImage downloadable from their support websites. This offers imaging and cloning capability, for the WD version a WD drive must be present, the Seagate DiscWizard supports Seagate, Maxtor and Samsung drives.

 

Hi.

 

Thanks for your response.

 

The new HDD will almost certainly be either a WD or Seagate both available from a local supplier - both 500 gig. I don't know what brand the one in the laptop is currently I haven't actually looked.

 

Would the Acronis software available from the WD or Seagate site enable me to "clone" as I described and more to the point would it be a task a novice can perform?

 

Cheers.


Edited by iamafreeman, 19 May 2015 - 05:13 AM.


#9 Platypus

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 05:30 AM

If you purchase either brand of drive, the relevant Acronis software they provide is intended to make an easy job of transferring to the new drive. I think you should be able to master it, but if you have difficulty, someone here would be able to offer instructions to help.

 

Likewise if you decide to try Macrium.


Edited by Platypus, 19 May 2015 - 05:31 AM.

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#10 iamafreeman

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 08:59 AM

If you purchase either brand of drive, the relevant Acronis software they provide is intended to make an easy job of transferring to the new drive. I think you should be able to master it, but if you have difficulty, someone here would be able to offer instructions to help.

 

Likewise if you decide to try Macrium.

hi, Platypus

 

Thanks for your help and advice, greatly appreciated.

 

Many thanks.



#11 RolandJS

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 09:30 AM

I use Acronis True Image, I found it best to label my two partitions [on the one HD] S01_C and S01_D, 'cause Acronis assigns drive letters differently than what one is used to within Windows OS.


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#12 DataMedic

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Posted 19 May 2015 - 12:35 PM

Personally I'd use a Linux live distro such as Knoppix, along with ddrescue (included with most distros) to clone it.  It's probably the only software appication that can get a good clone even if there's bad sectors on the drive.



#13 iamafreeman

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Posted 20 May 2015 - 05:21 AM

Hi, everyone

 

Many thanks to you all for your help and advice will have a go at this is a few days time and see how it goes!!

 

Grateful for offers of help if things go badly I may need it!! 



#14 brainout

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Posted 27 June 2015 - 12:31 PM

Personally I'd use a Linux live distro such as Knoppix, along with ddrescue (included with most distros) to clone it.  It's probably the only software appication that can get a good clone even if there's bad sectors on the drive.

Thank you for this.  I always like to have more than one of the same kind of program.  Clonezilla sometimes spazzes out at 1TB cloning, esp. when Macrium has already cloned the drive and suddenly won't do it rightly.


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#15 brian2009

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Posted 27 June 2015 - 05:14 PM

I have recently used Aomei software successfully for backups/images/partitions etc. It's free and has a very easy to use interface. There are also several good diy youtube videos of it in use.

 

http://www.aomeitech.com/

 

an informative review with feedback:

 

http://www.davescomputertips.com/aomei-backupper-free-imaging-test-review/


Edited by brian2009, 28 June 2015 - 08:07 AM.





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