Best way to replace a drive with a clone

Brian Millett bmillett at
Sat Jul 31 18:21:40 UTC 2010

On Sat, 2010-07-31 at 12:59 -0500, Steven Stern wrote:
> According to the SMART stats, the single drive in my Fedora server is 
> starting to fail.  Rather than backup, do a clean install, and rebuild, 
> I'd like to try to clone the existing drive to a new one, then swap in 
> the new one.
> What are the restrictions on doing this and the best way to accomplish 
> it?  I have the Clonezilla Live CD that I use for backup.  Will that do 
> it?
> Or will a straight dd do it?
>      add new drive as PATA slave /dev/sdb
>      dd -if /dev/sda -of /dev/sdb
>      remove /dev/sda
>      change the jumpers on /dev/sdb to match what was /dev/sda
>      reboot
> In the dd procedure, I'm not sure what to do if sdb is larger than sda.
> -- 
> -- Steve

Clonezilla will do a disk to disk clone which is very slick.  Which will
fit into your 'dd' scenario.  If you can do that, then that is the best.
Otherwise clonezilla can clone to an image which you know.  Also see the
fsarchiver application available on systemrescuecd.  I've used both with
great success.  My personal preference is fsarchiver for partitions and
clonezilla for full disk. 
Brian Millett - [ Kosh and Talia, "Deathwalker"]
"Ah. You seek meaning."
"Then listen to the music, not the song."

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