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What's the easiest way to clone a HD in Win 7?

Peter PrinciplePeter Principle Registered User
edited April 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
Got a new hard drive, I want to transfer everything on my current boot drive to the new drive. What's the easiest way to do this that is also free? It's Windows 7.

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"A man is likely to mind his own business when it is worth minding. When it is not, he takes his mind off his own meaningless affairs by minding other people's business." - Eric Hoffer, _The True Believer_

Posts

  • ZeonZeon Registered User
    edited April 2011
    Just plug your new drive in and use it solely for storage? Thats what I would do.

    Alternatively, take your old drive out, put the new drive in, install windows on it, then plug the old drive in and copy stuff straight over.

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  • BeazleBeazle Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Acronis TrueImage. The trial is good for 30days.

  • Peter PrinciplePeter Principle Registered User
    edited April 2011
    There are a few reasons why that won't work, not really relevant to the problem (not actually my computer, the old drive is old, the new drive is new & less likely to die spontaneously, I've only got this weekend to work on it, etc etc).
    Acronis TrueImage. The trial is good for 30days.

    Thanks, I'll take a look! : )

    "A man is likely to mind his own business when it is worth minding. When it is not, he takes his mind off his own meaningless affairs by minding other people's business." - Eric Hoffer, _The True Believer_
  • TetraNitroCubaneTetraNitroCubane Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    If you've got a reasonably large external HD (large enough to hold all your data) Windows 7 does comes with it's own image making software. Just choose the backup option from Control panel, make a complete disk image on your backup, and then restore it to the new drive using the CD you'll burn afterward.

    Acronis will do much the same, though! Just another option.

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  • shutzshutz Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    The way I did it when I upgraded my laptop's hard drive was, I got an external USB enclosure, put the new drive into that, then booted using a Ubuntu liveCD, which includes its own partition management tool, and I just used that to copy the partitions over, and resize them at the same time to take advantage of the new storage space.

    Once I was done, I switched drives (taking the old drive out of the laptop, taking the new drive out of the enclosure, putting the new drive into the laptop, then putting the old drive into the enclosure.)

    Everything was left in the same place. The copy itself took a while, but any of the other solutions here are bound to take about the same time.

    Naturally, if you have room in your computer to just install both drives, just add the new drive, and do the copy as I described above, then, when you're done, take the data cable from the old drive, plug that into the new drive, and then make sure the old drive isn't connected. Make sure everything boots, and you're all set. You can then re-partition and/or reformat the old drive, and use it as a secondary data drive.

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