Copying a Hard Disk Containing Windows With Fedora
debian at herakles.homelinux.org
Sat Mar 15 00:13:38 UTC 2008
Oliver Ruebenacker wrote:
> Dear friends,
> I need to copy the hard disk of a Windows computer to a new hard
> disk of equal size. I was thinking of connecting both drives
> (SATA/150), booting from the Fedora 8 Rescue Disk and then do
> dd if=/dev/hda of=/dev/hdb
> in hope that after that, the second hard disk can be used in place
> of the first one (including booting Windows, of course).
> Does this work? Thanks!
It probably will work, but I would worry that the disks' gemoetries
may differ a little. Not all 120Gbyte drives have the same number of
I copy Windows immmoderately often. My preferred tool is a bootable CD
including ntfs-progs - think the latest Knoppix.
ntfsclone does an excellent job of copying a partition.
If you need to change a partition's size, there's ntfsresize.
I'd probably copy (extremely carefully) the first sector with dd, then
use hdparm to make Linux reread the partition table on the target drive.
To be safe, I might resize the source partition(s) to a little smaller
Then copy with ntfsclone, and resize again at the destination to make
sure the data fit snugly into the partition.
 I used dd to copy an 80 Gbyte drive to a 320 Gbyte drive. I'm happy
with the results, but then if it went wrong I know what to try next. It
would not work if the target drive was even one sector shorter.
Depending on partitioning.
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