Best practice for cloning a Dual Boot system?

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by rolfalm, Mar 12, 2008.

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  1. rolfalm

    rolfalm Registered Member

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    What is the best practice for cloning both hard drives on a dual boot system? I'm using TI 11 Home. My system details are below. I thought I would ask about this before walking through the mine field. I've read through the forums on this subject, but I'm still a bit confused because the much of the advice doesn't apply to TI 11.

    I have a dual boot system with Windows XP Pro 32 bit on one 500 GB SATA HD, and Vista Ultimate 64 BIT on a second 500 GB SATA HD. I want to replace both 500 GB hard drives with two 150 GB SATA 10,000 RPM WD Raptors. I'm going to use the 500 GB drives for data storage. My system is used for high end 3D development and video editing (Lightwave 9.3 64 bit, Newtek SpeedEdit, etc). The Raptors will perform much better, I've got a few in other systems I own. I need the dual boot because a few of my apps will not work on Vista 64 bit. I've listed a few more details below based on things I've seen mentioned in other posts related to this subject...

    1. I'm using the Vista boot manager. No 3rd part boot manager is installed.

    2. When I setup my dual boot, Win XP was installed first and Vista 64 bit second. Both drives only have one partition, which uses all of the space on the drive.

    3. I'm only using about 50 GB on each 500 GB drive, so I should have no problem moving to the smaller 150 GB Raptors.

    4. I've run "ptedit32" and confirmed the sector offset is 63 on both drives

    5. I have an eSATA card that has two eSATA connections and one 4 pin power connector. It has cables that allow me to connect and power an internal SATA HD externally. This way I can connect each 150 GB Raptor externally to perform the cloning procedure.


    Questions...

    1. Do I clone the XP drive or the Vista 64 drive first?

    2. Do I clone each drive at once or in turn?

    3. If I clone them in turn, do I clone one drive...replace the orginal...boot up...then repeat with the second drive?


    Any help you can provide will be greatly appreciated!!


    Full System Specs:

    Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 (G0) and Zalman CNPS9500A CPU Cooler
    Gigabyte ex38-ds4 motherboard
    OCZ ReaperX PC2-6400 2x2GB 4-4-3-15
    2x WD SATA SE 500GB Hard Drives
    evga 8800 GTS 640 Video card
    Antec 900 Case
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Power Supply
    Dell 2405FPW 24" LCD Widescreen
    Dual Boot - Vista Ultimate 64 bit and XP Pro 32 bit
     
  2. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    If I were doing this using cloning, I'd clone the drives one at a time. Use the TI CD, don't do it from Windows. Make sure you don't select the option to WIPE the source drive. Clone the XP drive first. Remove the original, install the clone and boot. You may need to run a repair (have your Vista DVD ready).

    Boot into XP and boot into Vista. Both should detect the new drive and both may require a reboot. If a reboot is needed, do the reboot. This will make sure each OS sees the new drive properly before you continue.

    Next, do the same thing with the Vista drive.

    By doing the drives one at a time and letting XP and Vista only need to detect one new hard drive at a time, it may avoid some problems.

    That being said, I rarely clone. I would just image, restore, repair (if needed) and setup my boot manager.
     
  3. rolfalm

    rolfalm Registered Member

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    Thanks for the response!

    Just to confirm...I need to have the Vista disk ready for a possible repair after installing the cloned XP drive first? Is that a typo, or do I need the Vista disk to repair the boot manager?
     
  4. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    Since both XP and Vista are booting from Vista's boot manager which is installed on the XP drive, you may need to boot the Vista DVD and do a repair to be able to boot XP after you clone its drive. You may also have to do a repair after you clone the Vista drive. You won't know until you do it.

    If a repair is needed, the automatic repair function may work. If it doesn't, a manual repair can be performed.

    Do you have access to another computer so you can post here if you run into problems?
     
  5. Xpilot

    Xpilot Registered Member

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    I have never tried to do a down size clone of this magnitude so I have no definite knowledge whether your method will work. If true image complains and will not play nice there is another way to go which would be my first choice.
    1. Make a full disk image of the XP drive to one of the smaller new drives.
    2. Remove the old XP drive and replace it with the other smaller new drive.
    3. Boot from the recovery CD and restore the whole of the XP backup image to its new drive.
    4.Remove the CD, disconnect the external drive which has been used to hold the XP image and then a re- boot to check all is well so far.

    The steps to replace the Vista drive would be the same apart from making its image to the old XP drive and using that image to restore to the once used new drive.

    Done this way your original disks are only connected while being read and are safely dis-connected while the new drives are being written. I suggest this method because I always like to have a means to step back and I have downsized XP disks in just such a manner.

    Xpilot
     
  6. rolfalm

    rolfalm Registered Member

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    Thanks for clarifying!

    I have several computers, so no problem posting if I have trouble.
     
  7. rolfalm

    rolfalm Registered Member

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    Just wanted to say thanks!

    I followed your instructions exaclty, and this method worked fine. No problems cloning the 500GB (50GB used) drives down to the 150GB Raptors. Took about 20 min for each. There was no need to repair after replacing the XP drive, but I did have to when replacing the Vista drive. The repair process took maybe 5 min total, and that includes the boot time from the Vista DVD. I guess most people have a problem with the repair step in this situation becuase they don't have the Vista DVD. It was very simple.
     
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