How can I clone my hard disk – with and without software?

sarang bakale October 30, 2011
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I’m looking to clone a hard disk and I would like to know how, preferably with and without software. Any advice?

  1. Oron
    May 7, 2012 at 10:25 am

    As others have suggested, Clonezilla (free) or Acronis (costs money). Other good cloning programs are Paragon Backup & Recovery 2012 Free from http://www.paragon-software.com/home/br-free/ and DriveImage XML http://www.runtime.org/driveimage-xml.htm (both free).

    For drives with data only (I assume this is what you meant by "without software"), you could just copy the files across. However, bear in mind that certain types of data are tracked by the system and this would break the tracking. For example, Windows knows where "My Documents" even if you move it to another drive, but it recognises it by a special number, not by name, so simply copying it to another drive would mean that Windows will not be able to find it.

  2. Venkat M
    May 6, 2012 at 12:42 pm

    why my PSD folders showing black color in acd see softwre how can i solve it?

  3. venkat.m
    May 6, 2012 at 12:34 pm

    why my PSD Files are looking black in acd see software? files are opening but folders are shoing in black how can i solve my problem?

  4. Anonymous
    October 31, 2011 at 11:43 am

    Acronis true image
    http://www.acronis.com/

    if you have western digital hard drive then there is a free acronis version
    http://support.wdc.com/product/downloaddetail.asp?swid=119

    check your hard drive manufacturer possibly they offer another tool.

  5. Jay
    October 31, 2011 at 12:34 am

    Without the software, you can right click on the local hard disk select copy and paste:)

    you don't have to install an extra software, if you have xp/w7 pro/w7 utlimate.

    Windows xp provide Backup utility program with windows xp.

    http://www.makeuseof.com/answers/good-freeware-backup-program-works-external-usb-drives/#comment-339588549

    Windows 7 ultimate and windows 7 pro has the options to backup hard disk.

    You can see the list of backup software : http://www.makeuseof.com/pages/best-windows-software#backup

    Recent Similar question :
    http://www.makeuseof.com/answers/good-freeware-backup-program-works-external-usb-drives

    • Aibek
      October 31, 2011 at 9:24 am

      This wouldn't work for system files that are being used by operating system. As a result the Copy operation would copy only the files not being used by operating system. What this means is that new disk will probably have all personal files stored on the hard drive but not the functional operating system.

      • Jay
        October 31, 2011 at 10:01 am

        Ok, I was kind of joking, that you can't create backup file without a backup software, inbuilt or external.
        I think it will copy the files anywhere, but cannot restore simply by pasting to a local disk with system files because of system files on the pc will be in use by Operating system.
        I thought about backup and restore (archive and extract)with winRar also,
        may be We should not seriously think about copying and pasting system files, then why the back up programs are there! :)

        • Aibek
          October 31, 2011 at 10:09 am

          got it :)

          The backup software usually meant to backup specific directories and files not the actual operating system, I think.
          That being said there are backups tools that able to copy/backup the files that are being used by the operating system.
          They are usually affiliated Microsoft. There are also those that run the actual backup job before the Windows loaded.

          Aibek

        • Jay
          October 31, 2011 at 10:27 am

          Yes, backup tools can create disk image, and it can restore entire OS.
          Copying is not the problem,you can simply copy anything, but when you will try to restore by pasting them, it will not work, that's why you need backup tools. :)

  6. FIDELIS
    October 31, 2011 at 12:02 am

    Hello, you could try clonezilla.  Go to the following link and go to the Backup section.  There is a link for Clonezilla there:

    http://www.makeuseof.com/pages/best-windows-software

    How to use Clonezilla:

    http://clonezilla.org/general-live-use.php

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