Windows XP does not boot after restoring

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by chrishch, Feb 12, 2009.

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  1. chrishch

    chrishch Registered Member

    Apr 23, 2008
    I'm not sure if there is an explanation for this.

    I took an image with True Image Home 11 within Windows XP. Hooked up the original SATA drive with an USB enclosure and the image was also written to a separate USB drive.

    Then, when I did the restore within Windows, it went fine without errors. However, when I put the new drive into the laptop, it will not boot. I tried everything to rebuild the MBR using the Acronis Utility disc, Windows XP's fixboot & fixmbr, as well as doing a Repair install of Windows XP. Nothing worked.

    I then decided used the rescue boot disc and tried the restore that way. In the end, that worked. Nothing was different. I used the same image (tib) files, restored to the same drive, and once that was done, the laptop was able to boot using the new drive.

    My question is, why would it behave this way? It does not make any sense. The laptop is a ThinkPad, and I made sure the Service Partition was not imaged. One thing that was different was the time it took to do the restore. Within Windows, it took about an hour (for the 50 GB of info), but with the Rescue CD, it took 3.5 hours.

    I have had no problems imaging previously using the GUI within Windows, but this time, it refused to work. At first I thought there were problems with the new hard drive, but I tried three different drives, and the results were the same, none of them booted.
  2. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

    Oct 27, 2004
    Either way, ATI is booting into linux to do the restore, but the versions and drivers available won't always be the same (hey, Acronis says, "Details shmeetails)."

    Sometimes neither way will work, someones one or both ways. You really have to rry it to see what will. That's why it's best to test before you have a fatal hdisk crash.


  3. chrishch

    chrishch Registered Member

    Apr 23, 2008
    After multiple failures, I found the key to this whole thing.

    The drive which the image is to be restored, has to be in the ThinkPad in order for the MBR to be restored properly.

    Before, I had the new drive inside an external USB enclosure. The image was restored successfully, but the drive will not boot once it's installed on to the ThinkPad.

    If I do it with the good/new drive in the ThinkPad, and then run the restore using the Rescue CD. It works. It takes a long time, but it works.

    Now, the next question is, if I have a different model ThinkPad, will it still work... I guess I'll have to do further testing.
  4. K0LO

    K0LO Registered Member

    Mar 9, 2006
    State College, Pennsylvania

    Welcome to the forum.

    Many Thinkpads (like mine) use a nonstandard disk drive geometry (240 heads vs. 255 heads). Almost all USB interfaces will "see" the drive as having 255-head geometry. To work in your laptop it must be "seen" as 240-head. As you have discovered, the way to accomplish this is to have the target drive installed internally.

    This has nothing to do with the MBR. Some Compaq laptops are similar, so the general advice for best chances of a successful clone or restore is to always have the target drive installed in its final location. Some call this a "reverse clone" where the source drive is removed from the laptop and installed in a USB enclosure and the new target drive is installed in the laptop. The same advice applies to image restores - restore to the internal drive in its final location.

    If your PC BIOS uses standard 255-head geometry then it won't matter which way you image or clone.

    Glad that you got it working.
  5. Acronis Support

    Acronis Support Acronis Support Staff

    Apr 28, 2004
    Hello chrishch,

    Thank you for your interesting in Acronis True Image

    There could also be problems restoring the image to dissimilar hardware. In this case you will need Acronis Universal Restore to overcome restoring the image to a another computer with different hardware.

    Acronis Universal Restore is required to restore the image of Windows operating system to another hardware configuration. It the implementation of the unique technology developed inside Acronis that allows changing Windows Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL.dll) and device drivers. Acronis Universal Restore automatically detects if the HAL should be changed and also allows adding drivers for new hardware devices. This feature was designed for Corporate products and can’t be used with Home products.

    Best regards,
    Dmitry Nikolaev
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