Need to clone - have read existing threads

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by wartjimmy, Feb 2, 2008.

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  1. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    Purchased used Dell d600 laptop with xp sp2 installed from company which let me go.
    System is set up, 80 gig hd, with all sorts of restrictions (it was on a network and controlled by network technicians) and starts up almost every service imaginable. No CD's or startup disks provided.

    I have a 2nd HD caddy with a blank 80 gig hard drive, which I can place into the space which houses the cd drive.

    My idea is to clone the primary Drive C: (Only partition) to the 2nd hd.

    1. Then I will try to cleanup The primary by shutting down services, getting rid of programs not needed, trying to get rid of some of the restrictions, etc.

    2. If I foul up on the primary, I want to be able to substitute the 2nd Hd and boot up the machine so I have a working machine. (I am not intending to put the clone into another machine, I only have this one machine and am terrified to not be able to have it working)

    3. After reading through many of the threads on the Acronis section. I do not even want to try the trial copy of True Image 11. It appears that a clone is not really a bootable clone. Remarks about wiping out the primary as part of the clone process defeat my purpose of having the 2nd Hd. (Some of the threads implied the trial does not provide the functionality I need.)

    4. I have backed up everything from my primary to an 80 gig usb drive using windows backup. If I can't run the primary Hd, however, the backup is useless.

    5. I have no problem in purchasing the software if it can do exactly what I want without requiring me to hire a consultant.

    I would appreciate enlightenment!!
     
  2. TheWeaz

    TheWeaz Registered Member

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    Unless I missed something, I’d forget about cloning and just create a backup image file of the C: drive.
    Fiddle with C:, and if things get really screwed up, restore from the image file.
    Depending on available space on the backup disk, you could even do either additional FULL backups or DIF/INCs as you go about making changes.
     
  3. jonyjoe81

    jonyjoe81 Registered Member

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    I would also do an image backup of your c: partition and save it to another hard drive. This way it's the safest way with no worry's of deleting you original c: partition. Also I think image backups might work better on laptops (which can get very sensitive when cloned). An image backup of a system partition is automatically bootable when restored(whether you restore it on the same drive or different hard drive).

    As long as that image got backup properly with no error's, you should be able to restore it back.

    What you are planning to do is similar to a "system restore" , because you plan on restoring the image back to the original hard drive "if anything bad happens" while doing repairs to the original hard drive.

    From my expierence everytime I restored an image back to the same hardddrive/same partition, It's always worked perfectly. The drive booted up as it was suppose to. You only might run into problems when you try to restore to a different hard drive and those problems are fixable. As long as I have a good backup, I've always been able to restore it.
     
  4. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    TheWeaze and jonyjoe81,
    Thanks but you are missing my point in 2.

    What I will be trying to do in cleaning up the primary drive may render it inoperable. Then a backup cannot restore to a fried hard drive. (This happened to other people who purchased these used laptops,) I want to have a hard drive I can keep in my safe. If my primary goes south, I can pull it out put it in place of the primary and then apply the backup kept on my USB backup drive.


    CAN ACRONIS DO THIS OR NOT? I AM A FAN OF Rube Goldberg cartoons but do not want such a solution to my simple need to clone and boot from the 2nd HD.

    I REALLY APPRECIATE YOUR DESIRE TO HELP ME.
     
  5. DwnNdrty

    DwnNdrty Registered Member

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    I don't see how uninstalling software can fry a hard drive - it might become unbootable, but to fry it ... no. But if you do Clone the original to another drive, before you fiddle with anything on the original, test the cloned drive to make sure it works.
    And yes, Acronis True Image will let you Clone a drive to another.
     
  6. TheWeaz

    TheWeaz Registered Member

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    No, I didn't miss your point. It just wasn't a valid one.
    As DwnNdrty mentioned, you're not going to fry a hard drive by cleaning up apps.
     
  7. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    DwnNdirty,

    OK! A simple yes answer to my intention.

    I have been using computers since they only had the black floppy disks. As hard drives came along, crashing drives was not that rare. Then Microsoft started all this key, registration and licensing issues and software installed by downloading without the user being supplied with the installation media. The result "Russian roulette" with a laptop which can be dropped or shorted killing the hard drive.

    At the age of 72, I want the easiest solution available should disaster strike.

    I will get the trial copy. Try it out and if it works, I will purchase TI.

    Appreciate your help.
     
  8. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    TheWeaz,

    No disrespect meant in my reply. I worked in situations where unix was the op and trust in backups was minimal. The tar facility used for backup never informed one of errors during backup. One company I dealt with wiped out their entire customer database with a single unix command. We went to the backups to find nothing. The company worked for a week keying in the information from the latest printout to rebuild the database.

    This was not an isolated incident in the business world, 15 or so years ago. Early backup processes in the PC era also sufferd from instability. Thus my inherent distrust of backup alone as a solution.

    Again my thanks for your interest in helping me.
     
  9. bmadams

    bmadams Registered Member

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    I think what everybody is trying to tell you is the simplest answer: Create an Image of the working HD to a USB external drive. Use any Acronis True Image. Then swap that working HD with the blank one and restore that Image you just create to it, and whack away at it. If you screw it up, restore the Image again and mess around more....you do all this and neve touch your original working drive...
     
  10. TheWeaz

    TheWeaz Registered Member

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    Wartjimmy,

    I have been in this field a long time also, 34 years. Your distrust for backup procedures aside, I have never seen a physical hard drive failure caused by application cleanups. They may have “wiped out their entire customer database with a single unix command” but I bet the hard drives were still spinning along, and if they had a good backup, things would have been fine. You speak of “Early backup processes in the PC era” and “15 years ago”. That’s a long time ago and things have changed, as I’m sure you must know. Time to move on and place old fears aside. :)
    The benefit I see with an image backup as opposed to a clone, is that you can create the image, make a few changes, create an INC image, make a few more changes, another INC, etc.. That way, if hours into the process, something goes wrong, you don’t need to start from square one; just restore from the INC prior to the offending change and try something else.
    Good luck.
     
  11. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    bmadams and TheWeaze,

    It is starting to sink in through these neural pathways.

    "Buckner's research explored whether aging in the elderly caused a loss of correlation between the regions of the brain that — at least in young adults — engage in robust neural crosstalk. "

    Appreciate your persistence in laying it out until, I am clear.

    This is GREAT FORUM, i.e. the members.
     
  12. bmadams

    bmadams Registered Member

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    Great idea here!!! USB drive enclosures and Large Hard Drives are cheap...allowing for many many incremental images...as suggested above

    I understand the difficulty of learning this stuff...I have to read and read and read and read and...slowly it starts sinking in and fitting together..
     
  13. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    Just ordered TI v11 skipping trying the evaluation nonsense. If I have questions, I will post in this thread.
     
  14. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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    Yes!

    True Image provides two ways to create a replacement drive. It can either... clone which is creating a second identical drive so you have two identical drives; or, you can use a previously created DISK TI backup archive and use the TI Rescue CD to restore the backup to the same or different drive.

    My concern with your procedure is that your only copy of your always current backup resides on the single external drive. Should you loose that drive due a malfunction or jolt or a corrupt file, you have no current backup. My suggestion would be to invest in some additional external drives so you have a backup for your backup. Many of us choose to alternate our backups between 2 or 3 different devices. Since I am older than you, we both know Murphy's law. Be prepared. If your data is that important, then add some safety via multiple disks.

    Your backup drives are designed as a replacement for your existent computer. Should your motherboard fail or end up with a different operating system, then your only recovery will probably be the data and all programs will probably need to be re-installed.

    I have owned and used version 8, 9 and 10 and have found it very worthwhile. It has saved me many times. Learn how to use it and it will be your friend.
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2008
  15. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    I have two 80 Gig usb Western Digital Drives. My intent is to do DRIVE backup to one of those and data, system and incrementals to the other. My 2nd HD, which I will image from my current primary, is 120 Gig. Eventually, I'll use the 120 as my primary and keep the 80 Gig in the safe.

    If you wish to critique this, please do.

    Appreciate the help. I have already downloaded your basic guide to read when the software comes.
     
  16. GroverH

    GroverH Registered Member

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  17. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    GroverH,

    Thank you.

    Did you do a lot of training? Your explanations and docs reflect more than just technical expertise.

    I am now quite confident that everything will go smoothly.
     
  18. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

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    If "fry" means to electrically or mechanincally harm the drive, it's not going to happen from removing software. If "fry" means make things go wonky, scramble stuff on the hard drive, make programs misbehave, or any other corruption of software on the drive, then sure, uninstalling software can do that if the uninstaller makes software changes it shouldn't. I had norton remove something once and it scambled the system drive badly enough that I had to reimage. That was back inthe days when I was willing to use Symantec products. ;-)

     
  19. wartjimmy

    wartjimmy Registered Member

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    shieber,

    Ah!!!, a person who can read my mind. Thank you for the elucidation of my meaning of "fry". I am new to this bulletin board thing and must be sure that, when asking for help, I describe my problem accurately. This gives you wonderful people a chance to help without wasting your time probing for accuracy.

    My thanks
     
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