Help with cloning a drive

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by matty, Mar 16, 2005.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. matty

    matty Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    Posts:
    4
    Hi,

    I believe my Western Digital WD1200JB is failing. The signs are these intermittent high-pitch whines. Once the whine was prolonged and resulted in a "blue screen". So I believe I will get a new identical drive and try to clone the failing one.

    I'm trying to figure out what my options are. One would be to use the Western Digital Data Lifeguard Tools from DOS to set up the new drive with a primary partition and be bootable, then use the tools to copy over a new drive. Has anyone had much success using the software provided by the hard drive manufacturers? The downside to this is that I would have to put the second hard drive as a slave on the first IDE channel, rather than use my external firewire enclosure. Concerned about heat trouble in my small Shuttle, but could have both drive inside long enough for the cloning, and could probably have one just sitting outside.

    I'm also thinking about purchasing Acronis True Image or another program. The upside to this is that I could then subsequently backup my files, or even periodic cloning the hard drive to a backup drive with hopefully less hassles than the Western Digital Utility (having to boot from a floppy and having the drives on the same IDE channel). Can ACI do cloning (that is, copying the MBR, hidden files, etc) to an external firewire enclosure from within Windows XP? I've been trying to search through the forums and don't find any good answers, but maybe people only post when they have problems?

    Sorry if the questions are kind of vague. This is my first time going through this, and quite frightened by the possibility of having to re-install my whole system.

    Some info on my system:
    op-sys: Windows XP Pro w/ SP2
    processor: AMD Athlon (2GHz)
    computer: Shuttle SN41G2
    motherboard: nVidia nForce2 (FN41?)
    external HD enclosure: AMS Venus DS3 (I believe the Oxford chipset?)
    hard drives: WD1200JB


    Thanks MUCH for any help/suggestions!!!

    Matt
     
  2. MiniMax

    MiniMax Guest

    Hi Matt - I am an SN41G2 owner too :)

    Yes - TrueImage can (theoretically) do all the things you are asking about - and more.

    I say theoretical, because it can sometimes be a hit-and-miss affair with certain hardware and controllers.

    My advice for you would be to download the free trial and start experimenting. The trial should be fully functional EXCEPT for the final phase where data is about to be commited to disk. But it should allow you to verify that the software will recognize and will work your motherboard, disk controllers, etc, etc.
     
  3. matty

    matty Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    Posts:
    4
    thank you for the advice. However, would the free trial without the final phase be able to detect any troubles with rebooting? Or do the rebooting troubles only occur when you cannot do the imaging/cloning from within windows?

    Also, does anyone have any experience with the software provided by the hard drive manufacturers? I'm not convinced it copies the MBR and hidden files, etc...
     
  4. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Posts:
    25,885
    Hello Matt,

    Thank you for your interest in Acronis True Image (http://www.acronis.com/homecomputing/products/trueimage/).

    Acronis True Image allows you to get the exact copy of the drive including MBR, hidden files, etc. If you launch the cloning process under Windows you will be asked to reboot after the cloning is set up and after your computer reboots into Windows native mode the actual cloning will be performed. You may choose either Auotmatic or Manual mode of cloning. The Manual mode allows you to manage partitions on the destination drive if you need. For more information concerning the cloning please refer to Chapter 7 of the User's Guide available at http://www.acronis.com/pdf/trueimage8.0_ug.en.pdf

    Thank you.
    --
    Ilya Toytman
     
  5. matty

    matty Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    Posts:
    4
    Hello,

    This is a follow up to my post. I first tried the software from Western Digital. I thought it was odd that the partitioning/format phase only took several seconds, and then the disc copy phase took 7+ hours. Then when I tried to use the new drive, it would not boot and windows "saw" it as beeing unformatted.

    Then I downloaded the 14-day trial version of Acronis True image. The trial version was fully functional. I set up the new drive as a slave on the same IDE as the drive to be cloned. Set up the cloning in Acronis, and upon rebootong into "safe" mode (green screen?) the cloning commenced.

    The process took under an hour (120 Gig HD, half full). And it seems the clong was perfect. Three weeks of use and I haven't noticed anything wrong.

    However, I did notice one thing that was different with the new drive. I'm hoping someone reading this forum can tell me what it means. With the cloned drive, on booting into windows, before the XP flash screen comes up, there is a grey "progress bar" along the bottom, which goes from zero to 100% in just a second. This was not there with my older drive. Does anyone know what this meanso_O

    Thank you,

    Matt
     
  6. MiniMax

    MiniMax Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Posts:
    566
    I get a similar progress bar, both with my Win2k laptops and my SN41G2 desktop, but I think it takes a little longer thank 1 second.

    You will see the progress bar more clearly (like 4-8 seconds), if you send the PC into hibernation and wake it up.
     
  7. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Posts:
    25,885
    Hello Matt,

    Does your new system works as fast as it worked on the older drive? Especially, does it boot as fast as the old?

    Thank you.
    --
    Ilya Toytman
     
  8. matty

    matty Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    Posts:
    4
    I cannot notice any difference in the bootup time, +/- 10 seconds. And the system seems to work overall as it did before. What I'm wondering is what is the cause of the grey progress bar, when it was not there with the original drive.
     
  9. MiniMax

    MiniMax Registered Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Posts:
    566
    matty - did you get an identical drive - or just a similar drive?

    Maybe the new drive has some accustic management/noise reduction setting that is enabled, causing the drive to be just a tad slower than the old drive?

    Tried running the little Microsoft Bootvis utility to optimze the disk layout for faster boot up?
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.