Disk cloning.

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by fictchar, Oct 24, 2005.

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  1. fictchar

    fictchar Guest

    I purchased Acronis True Image to assist in the deployment of about 15 new computers. I want to configure one machine with all software installed, network settings, etc, and they copy/clone that onto the other machines. All the machines are exactly alike, same memory, systems board, etc. How is this done? I can't figure out how this program accomplishes this, but when I was researching this, it said that this program can do it. How?

    Thank you in advance.

  2. It'sme

    It'sme Registered Member

    Jul 2, 2004
    Middle Earth, NZ
    Snipped this from the TI8 Corporate Workstation Product manual -

    Key features include -
    The ability to clone a disk drive so that multiple systems will have the exact same base disk drive configuration and software

    Disk cloning and new disk deployment Acronis True Image Corporate Workstation can be used to clone an image onto multiple workstations. For example, let’s say a company purchased several PC and needs the same environment on each of them. Traditionally, the IT manager would install the operating system and all programs on each system, then configure the systems one at a time. Acronis True Image, however, allows the IT manager to simplify the process and save time by creating a disk image of the first system. That image is then deployed on to the multiple workstations. If you need to upgrade the workstations hard disk drives, Acronis True Image Corporate Workstation reduces the task to a few mouse clicks by duplicating an exact copy of the old disk onto a new one, adjusting partitions sizes automatically to fit the new hard disk.

    Looks like it can indeed be done. Haven't had a chance to scour the manual myself but the answer should be in there somewhere. The PDF is downloadable from the Acronis web site.
  3. It'sme

    It'sme Registered Member

    Jul 2, 2004
    Middle Earth, NZ
    Found this in the FAQ on P87 of that manual -

    How can I prepare Windows NT, 2000 or 2003 for cloning or transferring to a workstation with different hardware?

    Before you clone or transfer Windows to another workstation, you must prepare it with Microsoft System Preparation Tool (sysprep). The reasons to do this are described in the 298491 article of Microsoft Knowledge Base: “One problem from
    duplicating an installation of Windows 2000 is that each cloned computer has the same security identifier (SID) and computer name. This may prevent the cloned computers from functioning correctly in a workgroup or a domain. To work around this problem, administrators use the System Preparation Tool (Sysprep.exe) to remove configuration settings that are unique to the computer such as the computer name and SID." This problem also relates to Windows NT 4.0 and Windows XP, so you should prepare these OS in a similar way.
    You can download Microsoft System Preparation Tool from www.microsoft.com or extract from deploy.cab located on Windows XP installation CD.
    Below is a brief instruction on how to prepare your hard disk for cloning or transferring to another workstation:
    1. Create Acronis True Image Corporate Workstation bootable media using the corresponding wizard in the Acronis True Image Corporate Workstation menu.
    2. Run sysprep.exe. You can specify the following as command line parameters:
    -nosidgen — if you plan to delete all data from the old disk and/or don’t plan to use the old and new disks in different workstations simultaneously;
    -mini — if you plan to transfer your OS to a workstation with different hardware.
    3. Insert Acronis True Image Corporate Workstation bootable disk into the drive and load the program to create an image of the prepared disk.
    4. Install the new disk into your workstation or provide image access from the new workstation.
    5. Boot from the bootable disk again and restore the image to the new disk or workstation.
    6. Reboot.
    We recommend you to read Microsoft’s sysprep articles available to the following OS: Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, Windows 2003.

    Note that I haven't tried this. Maybe someone else can comment on their experiences.
  4. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

    Apr 28, 2004
    Hello Frank,

    Thank you for your interest in Acronis Complete System Deployment Software.

    I recommend you to read the information about Acronis Snap Deploy. Acronis Snap Deploy is a program for simultaneous remote deployment of a fully configured operating system with application software to target PCs over a network from a previously created image file.

    Thank you.
    Irina Shirokova
  5. PaulB2005

    PaulB2005 Registered Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Did you buy the Corporate Workstation version?
  6. fictchar

    fictchar Guest

    I purchased the Corp. Workstation ver. 8. I am going to try the instructions for the previous replies.

    Thanks and I hope it works.
  7. fictchar

    fictchar Guest

    OK, I followed the steps as stated from the users guide and it does not work. I ran sysprep on the first computer and then created the image to a network drive. I had to use a network drive since I had to boot up using the True Image disk and did not have the cd write software loaded. My first problem was the image would not complete. It would state it was done, but when I went to the directory, no file was there. Not sure what happened, but after a couple of tries it did work. When I booted the next computer, the one I wanted to clone, with the TI disks, I went to restore the image to that computer and it would said file is corrupted. Also, now if I try to boot into that computer, it says no operating system loaded.

    I purchase this program to assist me in setting up new computers. However, instead of making my task easier, I now have to reconfigure two computers that were working but are now not working. Also, it has taken up too much time in trying to get this software to work, that it has no real value to me as an asset for work.

    How do I go about getting a refund for this software?
  8. noonie

    noonie Registered Member

    Jun 7, 2004
    You can do this with just the regular version.
    Your other computers must be able to boot from the Ti boot disk.
    Once booted from the cd aim to the .tib files on the network and start restore. When finished, remove cd and reboot to your os. Depending on the os, you may have activation problems, but you can then change the key from within windows to your valid additional licenses.
    It works but other methods may be more convenient.
  9. jdozarchuk

    jdozarchuk Registered Member

    Nov 1, 2005
    I have TrueImage Server for Linux, and I do what you are asking.

    I prefer to use the Acronis bootable CD (the .iso comes with the install)

    1) Configure Machine A with all settings that I want
    2) Boot Machine A with the CD, select all of the partitions that it finds
    3) Save the image on a network server (or USB or Firewire hard drive)
    4) Boot up Machine B with CD
    5) Pull down my newly created image onto the new machine
    6) Reboot, and BAM, you've got two identical machines.

    I do this for 68+ machines of all the same hardware configuration. I have also successfully used TrueImageServer for Linux with NTFS partitions (imaging laptops and PC's).
  10. Fictchar

    Fictchar Guest

    And how do I get this bootable cd. I am using floppies to boot into TI. Does this really make a difference?

    Also, as I stated in my last post, I did get to the image and during the restore, it said corrupted image. From what I have seen on this board, this seems to be a serious issue.
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