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FrankSG
11-29-2011, 04:30 PM
I have Windows 7 64 bit on my computer. There are two physical drives. One is designated as Disk 0. Its the one that came installed on the computer when I bought it. I then installed another drive which is designated as Disk 1. Disk 0 has Drive C: which, of course, is my main drive. It also has Drive. D: which has the factory image. On Disk 1 which is Drive E:, I used to use for my backups. I now have an external drive that I use for my backups. I suspect that my main drive might be going bad. I have no indication for it except for the fact that I ran some sort of a scan a few weeks ago and got a message that I should backup as the drive may be going bad.
Here is what I would like to do concerning a System Image and would like to know if my thinking is correct. First of all, I have made a system image before and have restored it with no problem. I will first create a System Image on my external drive. When the image is created, I will shut down my computer and disconnect the cable of my external drive. I will then remove the cables from Drive E: , remove the cables from Drive C: (the drive that I made the image from) and connect those cables to Drive E:. Before hand I will have put in my CD repair disk in the CD ROM drive so that I can restore the image. I will then start up my computer which will ask me if I want to boot from the CD drive, which I will. One of the options will be to restore an image that I created earlier which I will answer, Yes. My computer will then recognize the drive that I installed which was Drive E: as Drive C: and restore my image to it. Is my thinking correct? I know this is a long read and I thank you.
~Frank~

Cuc Tu
11-29-2011, 04:48 PM
If you really think that your drive is going bad, I would create an image of both the D and D partitions.

I also think there is a way to clone the entire disc 0 to disc 1, or mirror all of the partitions, in a simpler process so you won't need to do any restore.

Cuc Tu
11-29-2011, 04:56 PM
If you wait for it, Sylvander will chime in with a puppy linux solution, which would likely be quite adequate.

Or Paul will come in with some rock solid advice and streamlined procedure.

I might say something like clonezilla.org and see how well you can swim from there...I'm not much help beyond that or I would.

LochLomonder
11-29-2011, 05:16 PM
Frank,

Clonezilla would work fine for this task, as Cuc suggested, since it could restore the two partitions from Disk 0 onto Disk 1. However, let's consider how you're imaging the disk currently, since there's no point introducing you to new software if (1) your happy and comfortable with your current software; and (2) it meets all your needs.


Is my thinking correct?

Yes, but remember to re-connect your external drive when you're restoring the image.

FrankSG
11-29-2011, 05:46 PM
If you really think that your drive is going bad, I would create an image of both the D and D partitions.

I also think there is a way to clone the entire disc 0 to disc 1, or mirror all of the partitions, in a simpler process so you won't need to do any restore.

When I've completed a system image and done a restore in the past, it always imaged and restored C: and D:. So it actually cloned disk 0.

mjc
11-29-2011, 10:29 PM
The only 'gotcha' I can think of is if the two drives are different sizes...bigger doesn't really matter all that much, but smaller does (Disk 1 smaller than Disk 0; that is).

One of two things could happen during a restore to a larger disk...the first is to just restore the partitions to the exact size they were and leave the difference unallocated. The other is to tack the difference on to one of the partitions. Manually partitioning the drive beforehand and restoring each partition individually solves that one.

The other case...the new drive is smaller...will either not restore at all (best case), truncate the partitions to actual size of the occupied space or blindly restore until it runs out of room and then just cut everything else off (obviously a VERY BAD THING).

Each imaging app handles things a little differently and should have some documentation on how it handles differing sizes. It also, somewhat, depends on HOW you made the original image...like whether it was compressed or not, didn't track 'free space', etc (usually there are a ton of options when making the image...)

What scan gave you the report?

FrankSG
11-29-2011, 11:31 PM
Tomorrow when I have time, I'll look things over carefully and give you more information on it and a little more detail. Right now I'm in the middle of watching a TV recording I made of American Pickers. If I manage to junk my computer, maybe these guys will buy it. :D Thanks for your feedback.

FrankSG
11-30-2011, 10:59 AM
This is more detail about my system: My desktop computer is a Compaq, but I bought it after HP bought or merged with Compaq. So, it's really an HP and that's where I get all of my support from. It actually has a HP Support Assistant utility. Running that utility is where I got the message telling me that the harddisk might be going bad. The size of Disk 0 is 455GB and Disk 1 is 465GB--so it's a hair bigger. Neither of them are partitioned except for the fact that on Disk 0 has Dr.D which is the factory image. When I create a system image it looks for a disk to write the image on and then tells me what it will image and displays it as:
System(C)(System)
Compaq(C)(System)
Factory_Image(D)(System)
So it restores everything. Both disks (Disk0 and Disk1) are formated with the NTFS format. So what I think I will do is to first re-format Disk1 to make sure it is clean, and then go ahead and do as I mentioned above. From what you said, it should work. If I mess it up, it won't be that much of a problem since it's not my main computer. I have a Notebook which has all of my important stuff on it. Besides, I like to experment with things--it's a good way to learn. And since I'm young, now is the time to learn. :) I will post back and let you know what happens.

FrankSG
11-30-2011, 04:32 PM
I did create a system image, changed the cables on the different disks and everything as I mentioned above. But the only thing it did was to change Disk 0 to Disk 1, and Disk 1 to Disk 0. Right now if I right-click Computer choose Manage and then Disk Management it shows Disk 0 as Dell E an empty, healthy primary partition. It shows Disk 1 as Compaq C exactly as it was when it was Disk 0. I am therefore now with a healthy Disk 0, and Disk 1 as it was before. If I do a restore, it will restore on what is now Disk 1. What I need to do is move what is now on Disk1 to Disk 0. That is I think that's what I have to do--but I'm not sure.

Paul Komski
11-30-2011, 10:37 PM
Just swapping the cables and doing nothing else is unlikely to change anything other than the Disk Order in Disk Management and Explorer in Windows. The likelihood is that you are still booting from the same hard drive and that Windows is still using the same Drive letters as before. Drive letters (unless setup from scratch) are retained (partition by partition) on all hard drives in a system until Windows is reinstalled/repaired/reimaged or unless any Drive letters are deliberately changed by the user. Drive letters can also change if the partition geometries are changed or partition tables moved around. One last method is by changing the disk signature by applying a "standard MBR" from a number of utilities or by the fdisk /mbr command.

As a general note when cloning Windows from one hard drive to another. It is good practice to do the cloning from outside windows AND TO THEN REMOVE THE ORIGINAL DRIVE BEFORE ATTEMPTING TO BOOT WINDOWS ON THE NEW ONE. Only after the new clone has been successfully booted-to (AS THE ONLY DRIVE IN THE SYSTEM) should the original be re-attached.

FrankSG
12-01-2011, 09:08 AM
Rather than venturing into something where I may do more harm than good, I think I'll just leave it alone. Since it is working with no problems, I still think that when I ran the scan and got a message that said the hard drive might be going bad, it may have been a false reading. Thanks again to all of you.

FTT
12-01-2011, 06:47 PM
Well at the very least, do yourself the favor of backing up your important personal files such as your grand children's pictures or videos... :)

Make some CD's and perhaps put same on some media cards and write protect them. Even an external drive or online storage.

I don't take hard drive failure warnings lightly, even if not risk of 'imminent' failure. Please, take on the role of 'Noah' and build your 'ark'-ive, just in case. ;)

FrankSG
12-02-2011, 12:58 PM
Well at the very least, do yourself the favor of backing up your important personal files such as your grand children's pictures or videos... :)

Make some CD's and perhaps put same on some media cards and write protect them. Even an external drive or online storage.

I don't take hard drive failure warnings lightly, even if not risk of 'imminent' failure. Please, take on the role of 'Noah' and build your 'ark'-ive, just in case. ;)
I agree that it is important to make regular backups which I always do. But I now believe that there is no problem with my hard disk as I first suspected. Last evening I downloade a utility called Geeksnerds and ran a scan to check my disk. It took 1 1/2 hours to run the scan and it checked out that the disk was free of errors. Have any of you heard of that utility I used? But, yes, I still make regular backups.

Paul Komski
12-02-2011, 01:26 PM
I downloade a utility called Geeksnerds and ran a scan to check my disk. It took 1 1/2 hours to run the scan and it checked out that the disk was free of errors. Have any of you heard of that utility I used?
I haven't used it or heard of it. There do exist Windows utilities like HDTune (http://www.hdtune.com/download.html) but best, IMHO, is to use the diagnostic utility from the maker of the hard drive.