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Windows 7: Clone to SSD won't boot, now I have a "hybrid" system


25 Dec 2009   #1

Windows 7 x64 Retail
 
 
Clone to SSD won't boot, now I have a "hybrid" system

I bought an Intel SSD (160GB) and used Acronis TrueImage to clone my system disk (Win 7 Ultimate x64, WD Caviar) to it. I've done this many times before, without a problem. This time, the PC (Asus P5B-Deluxe, Intel E6700) would not boot from the SSD - just gave me the flashing cursor.

I booted the Windows install DVD and ran the Repair tool. It said it fixed the boot record but when I restarted it still would not boot. When I reran repair, it said it could not find a Windows installation.

I then put back the WD disk and it would not boot from that either. Repair said it could not find anything to fix. I also tried the more detailed repair option, but it just spun for hours.

Eventually I did a new install of Windows 7 onto another partition, installed EasyBCD and created a configuration to boot from the SSD. That worked - sort of. I expected it to show the SSD as C: and to use that for everything, but what I got was that C: was the old install on the WD disk, the repair had added a new 100MB "System Reserved" partition on the WD drive, but it was booted from the SSD now D: - except that Program Files and the User folder were being referenced from C. I had created a Frankenstein's monster - not what I was aiming for.

Any clues as to how I can unravel this would be welcomed. I want to have the SSD be both the boot and Program Files/User partition.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Dec 2009   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

You'll be better off sadly starting a fresh install to the SSD.

Disconnect all Spinning drives leaving only the SSd connected, and in SATA port 0 or 1, however your MOBO lists the 1st one.

Let Win 7 create the partitions and everything wuill have the correct alignment for your SSD.

Once Windows 7 is installed, shut down and reconnect your spinning drives.


Acronis does fine maintaining alignments for SSD's IF you Image the ENTIRE SSD drive , and not just a partition.

So once you get everything installed and good to go, just BAck up the entire SSD, including the Windows little 100MB partition, and youll have no issues with alignments.

From my understanding, imaging over to a SSD form a partition copy of a reg. HD comes with issues, and aligment problems.

i know this probably isn't what you want to hear, but fresh instal would likely be the best option. ..


maybe others have something more positive to share.

these are the same steps I took (and was advised to take) when I got my SSD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2009   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

Please post a screenshot of Disk Mananagement window.

http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials...en-forums.html
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Dec 2009   #4
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Wishmaster View Post
You'll be better off sadly starting a fresh install to the SSD.

Disconnect all Spinning drives leaving only the SSd connected, and in SATA port 0 or 1, however your MOBO lists the 1st one.

Let Win 7 create the partitions and everything wuill have the correct alignment for your SSD.

Once Windows 7 is installed, shut down and reconnect your spinning drives.


Acronis does fine maintaining alignments for SSD's IF you Image the ENTIRE SSD drive , and not just a partition.

So once you get everything installed and good to go, just BAck up the entire SSD, including the Windows little 100MB partition, and youll have no issues with alignments.

From my understanding, imaging over to a SSD form a partition copy of a reg. HD comes with issues, and aligment problems.

i know this probably isn't what you want to hear, but fresh instal would likely be the best option. ..


maybe others have something more positive to share.

these are the same steps I took (and was advised to take) when I got my SSD.

Absolutely agree. Disconnecting the HDD is the way to go. Once it's installed, you don't even have to do anything extra. Just change the boot sequence in the BIOS - just as easy as double boot. I have done it that way and it is the cleanest installation - no messing with boot records etc.
I kept my Vista on the HDD, created a seperate partition for the data, moved all my data to that partition (from Vista with Properties > Location tab). Then I just included the folders into the Windows 7 libraries. Now I have no data sync problems either.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2009   #5

Windows 7 x64 Retail
 
 

I know how to do the fresh install, but I don't want to do that at this time. Maybe in a few months when I build a new system. I don't know why this clone should have worked any differently from the many I have done in the past. I know about alignment and don't care about that right now.

Here's a screenshot of the disk management display:

Name:  Capture.png
Views: 204
Size:  12.1 KB

Disk 0 is the SSD. At the time I did the clone, partition C was the only thing on the hard drive.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2009   #6

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by holmes4 View Post
I know how to do the fresh install, but I don't want to do that at this time. Maybe in a few months when I build a new system. I don't know why this clone should have worked any differently from the many I have done in the past. I know about alignment and don't care about that right now.

Disk 0 is the SSD. At the time I did the clone, partition C was the only thing on the hard drive.
Here is a thought: Go ahead and follow the suggestions already give and do a clean install of 7 with only the SSD drive connected. When finished and when booting correctly, replace it with the clone you have saved. Perhaps it will continue to boot correctly? If the clone is OK? If not then perhaps another try at creating an image?

I recommend creating the 100 MB system partition when installing 7 and here I would say your chances of ending up with a booting system would be greatly increased if you do.

Cheers!
Robert
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2009   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

There's nothing wrong with the alignment.



Open an elevated command prompt, type:

bcdboot d:\windows /s d:

then press enter.

close cmd.

In Disk Management , rt click D and Mark as active.

Set Disk 0 first in Bios boot order.

Have fun.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2009   #8

Windows 7 x64 Retail
 
 

Thanks for the suggestions - I'll try them out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2009   #9

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

If you didn't restore the mbr with the image - you may also need to write the disk code.

May as well do it anyway - assuming you are booted into D :

Extract bootsect.exe and copy it into D:\Windows\System 32:

bootsect.zip

Open an elevated cmd and type:

bootsect /nt60 d: / mbr

then press enter.

close cmd.

Now you should be good to restart - go into Bios , set Disk 0 as first in HD boot order.

That's it.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Dec 2009   #10

Windows 7 x64 Retail
 
 

I tried SIW2's suggestions, but they made no difference in the behavior. I then tried Robert's (iseeuu) idea of a fresh install on the SSD and then restoring the previous image. When I did this with the image of the SSD, I got to a strange state where it booted and let me log in, but then brought me to a blank blue desktop with "This copy of Windows is not genuine" in the lower right. Nothing else appeared on the screen and all I could do was shut down. Finally I restored a copy of the original WD image, the one that had shown as C in my "Frankenstein" mode, and that worked just fine.

One curious thing I noted was that in the Frankenstein mode, while the system appeared to be running properly, deep down it was very conflicted. This was evidenced by my getting Windows Installer errors any time I tried to install or uninstall a product.

Thank you all - I now have Windows installed properly on the SSD - my hard disk WEI rating went from 5.9 to 7.2 - and the system feels much snappier.

I do have one residual question. When I did the new install as Robert suggested, the System Reserved partition was created as I expected. What I didn't expect was that it would have a drive letter assigned to it - I had not seen that in my past installs on an empty disk. Is there any harm to removing the drive letter for that partition, or should I just leave it alone?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Clone to SSD won't boot, now I have a "hybrid" system




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