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Windows 7: System Image - Hard Drive Clone


12 Apr 2012   #1

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 
System Image - Hard Drive Clone

Hi there,

I am stack at certain process while trying to load a system image onto new hard drive using Windows 7 x64 image restore function from the windows 7 disk,
its kind of strange but let me explain whats happening,
I got my primary drive 500 gigs with windows 7 and all my files,
I made a system image onto another clean internal hard drive size 160 gigs and I was successful, now I disconnected my 500 gigs primary hard drive, attached a new 250 gig hard drive and I proceeded to load the system image, I boot to windows 7 cd,
I get the option to repair , click on restore from system image file , everything looks good computer finds the hard drive 160 gigs with the system image as source,
I press next look for the target drive and I see it there 250 gigs drive thats freshly formatted ..., I select the target press next it all looks good and then I get the screen that there is no target hard drive... I made sure that this hard drive is not being excluded from format and new process... I am lost ... what am I doing wrong here, I reformatted those 2 drives twice I tried this operation about 8 times , I get the error message each time I am attempting to create this new system image...,
can anyone help out...

thanks,

Drew

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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12 Apr 2012   #2

Windows 7 home premium x64
 
 

Have a look in the disk manager, sometimes disks have to be initialised before they can be seen by the system. Does it have a drive letter asigned ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Apr 2012   #3

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

thank you for your reply,
the disk has been initialized and yes there is a drive letter assigned to it.....,
any other ideas ??
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


13 Apr 2012   #4

win7 home premium-64bit-SP1-IE10
 
 

Morph1
Boot your system with the 500 gigs , Attach you 250 gigs to a usb port, clone & not image the 250, turn off your computer, swap your hard drives and I think you get what you want.
Good luck
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Apr 2012   #5
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

With Windows imaging you must reimage to a HDD at least as large as the initial HDD. This has nothing to do with how much data you are imaging.
The reason is that Windows always replace the Master Boot Record (MBR). This contains the partition table for the original HDD (a 500GB drive). Windows is saying there is no suitable HDD to reimage to.

If you post a full Disk Management screen shot of your 500GB HDD we can guide you through how to do it. It would be best to use something like free Macrium Reflect.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #6

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

thanks MJF,

So is that the only problem here the size of my target drive in my case ?,
can I just create a partition on my 500 gig drive to equal to my original 250 gig from which the image was created ??, this is sickening how much of BS a legitimate windows user have to go through to create a simple drive image....
Hope to sort this out soon...,

thanks for the help, looking forward to your reply.

Cheers,


Andy
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #7
mjf

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1
 
 

The size issue is certainly a main problem. It may be your only problem.
I suggest you do decrease the partition size to just under 250GB. Then use the free version of this software which I also use and is popular with Forum Members:
Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - Information and download
The downside is that you make the pe recovery DVD and this involves a one off download of Windows WAIK (1.7GB unfortunately).

Note that even when you reduce the partition size you will not be able to use Windows imaging to reimage to the 250GB HDD. The size of the 500GB drive will still be in the MBR partition table and Windows will balk.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #8
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Morph1 View Post
thanks MJF,

So is that the only problem here the size of my target drive in my case ?,
can I just create a partition on my 500 gig drive to equal to my original 250 gig from which the image was created ??, this is sickening how much of BS a legitimate windows user have to go through to create a simple drive image....
Hope to sort this out soon...,

thanks for the help, looking forward to your reply.

Cheers,


Andy
That is the same with most (at least free) imaging programs. But it should be simple to shrink your 500GB partition to less than 250GB since you have only 160GB of data (unless that is the compressed number).

For that job you need the bootable CD of Partition Wizard (see on the left side of the webpage) because Disk Management won't do it.

And here is a tutorial in case you decide to use free Macrium - it is the best. Imaging with free Macrium
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2012   #9

Windows 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

I will look at the solution suggested above, however I ended up reinstalling windows 7 and all my software from scratch onto that 250 gig target drive, I wonder if Bill Gates could recover my lost time in small financial contribution lol....,
In the mean time I wanted to ask you guys if I had the exact identical drives in size would the system disk image app.
thats included into the windows 7 disk make a complete usable image / clone of my primary drive booting windows 7 and all my installed software including all my e-mails and files?? does the type of hard drive play a role ? what if the Primary drive was a WD drive and my target drive was Seagate Drive both 500 gigs would that matter ??
In this case I would buy another 250 gig drive and image that drive....

thanks again,


Andy
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Apr 2012   #10

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

I'm not sure what you mean by "type of hard drive". The brand doesn't matter.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 System Image - Hard Drive Clone




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