Restore Backup Image from one computer to another

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  1. Posts : 42,944
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)
       #61

    You should seriously consider what cerberus proposed.

    I've never done anything like that, but if creating an iso from your existing MBR installation and creating a bootable disk based on that then allows you to install as GPT, you've solved several problems. @Cerberus- would that be possible?

    If so you don't have to
    - convert MBR to GPT
    - transfer O/S partitions to another disk to create your new disk

    and you may be able to incorporate needed drivers.

    Doing that means you don't need to use Macrium Reflect or similar in migrating the O/S, and as you are creating an iso file from your original disk, you can then set that disk aside and install to a new one.

    You would be left with handling partition D: of course.
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  2. Posts : 81
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #62

    I certainly am -- I realize the advantages.

    You have not seen earlier exchanges, but there is a particular reason why I prefer to consider the disk-cloning first. It does indeed causes the problems you mention, but it has potentially critical advantage having to do with why I bother with the whole thing.
    Moreover, it's more compatible with my knowledge and skill levels -- my zone of comfort.
    Last edited by sgeneris; 12 May 2023 at 02:04.
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 42,944
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)
       #63

    I have... and as I said much earlier, you may well find you need to try several variations/approaches as you encounter different issues when you do. However, the constraints you've chosen mean you are likely to need a lot of (free) support.
      My Computers


  4. Posts : 81
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #64

    dalchina said:
    I have... and as I said much earlier, you may well find you need to try several variations/approaches as you encounter different issues when you do. However, the constraints you've chosen mean you are likely to need a lot of (free) support.
    In uncharted territory, you bet which is why I am here. But...

    I know lots of people sick and tired of MS and what they are doing to Windows and who are perfectly happy with early versions of W10 -- I chose the first version that was stable -- and would love to stick to it because -- it took them years to set it up just the way they needed and have no reason to start for scratch and adapt to constant changes. We can use the collective expertise available here to put together a stepwise procedure that will help them protect it, rather than be constantly disrupted without control of their own computers. Seems to me this is exactly what 10Forums is for -- the users good.
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  5. Posts : 15,480
    Windows10
       #65

    dalchina said:
    You should seriously consider what cerberus proposed.

    I've never done anything like that, but if creating an iso from your existing MBR installation and creating a bootable disk based on that then allows you to install as GPT, you've solved several problems. @Cerberus- would that be possible?

    If so you don't have to
    - convert MBR to GPT
    - transfer O/S partitions to another disk to create your new disk

    and you may be able to incorporate needed drivers.

    Doing that means you don't need to use Macrium Reflect or similar in migrating the O/S, and as you are creating an iso file from your original disk, you can then set that disk aside and install to a new one.

    You would be left with handling partition D: of course.
    I do not think you could image an mbr and install as gpt.

    When you install a custom iso, it skips oobe. Also, not certain, but I think a custom iso only does C drive. I do not know what would happen if you cloned the d drive as is to new pc - i.e. does custom iso keep all registry references to another drive.
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 42,944
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)
       #66

    Thanks, lots of potential pitfalls...!
      My Computers


  7. Posts : 81
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #67

    @Cerberus,

    >I do not think you could image an mbr and install as gpt.

    But in the initial exchanges with @dalchina here she outlined how she worked around that successfully. Yet now she thinks I should use your method.

    How about all this?
    https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/wi...nto-a-gpt-disk
    https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/wi...ent/mbr-to-gpt
    https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/wi...nto-a-gpt-disk
    3 Free MBR to GPT Converter for Windows 11/10/8/7 (No Data Loss)
    https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/...6-51b8433f1286
    Anybody familiar with that?

    <When you install a custom iso, it skips oobe.>

    Since I am talking here about restoring a cloned image, ***not installing the OS***, WILL it trigger activation? That is one of the questions I've asked.

    <Also, not certain, but I think a custom iso only does C drive. I do not know what would happen if you cloned the d drive as is to new pc - i.e. does custom iso keep all registry references to another drive. You would be left with handling partition D: of course.>

    I do not mean to clone each partition, but the entire disk. My understanding of disk cloning is that it replicates the disk PHYSICALLY, at the bits level. That's why it's the only way that might preserve 100% customization. The question is does Macrium free do this? If not, is there a free tool that does?

    What we need here is users who have experience with each of the issues above and can tell us how they did each.

    I came across this but it's hard to tell how much customization it would preserve:

    https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/sy...loads/disk2vhd
    Easiest Guide to Copy VHD to Physical Disk - No Data Loss
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  8. Posts : 42,944
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)
       #68

    Yet now she thinks I should use your method.
    I (a 'he') initially thought Cerberus's approach would make this easier- incorporating a driver and - as I said- perhaps (I didn't know so I asked as you will have read) allowing you to install as UEFI /GPT. But it seems not- you'd still have to convert to GPT.

    So no, there's no one simple approach.

    Since I am talking here about restoring a cloned image, ***not installing the OS***, WILL it trigger activation? That is one of the questions I've asked.
    At some point- in your case ensuring Windows Update is disabled, you will do that by connecting to the internet. It is the interaction with MS's activation server that's needed as far as I know.

    No difference whether you cloned, copied partitions, restored images or copied the bits individually.

    I do not mean to clone each partition, but the entire disk. My understanding of disk cloning is that it replicates the disk PHYSICALLY, at the bits level. That's why it's the only way that might preserve 100% customization. The question is does Macrium free do this? If not, is there a free tool that does?
    Google can help you deal with elementary questions like that. This answers the questions you raise, I believe.
    The Best Free Disk Cloning Software [Updated for 2023]

    I think it's time you actually tried something. E.g. cloning your drive.
    More speculation- and there have been many hours of it already- is unlikely to help. Do some research.. choose your new PC bearing in mind comments made about Nvme drivers (research that), and when you have an actual practical issue, post back with an exact question. Thanks.
      My Computers


  9. Posts : 81
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #69

    <I (a 'he') initially thought Cerberus's approach would make this easier- incorporating a driver and - as I said- perhaps (I didn't know so I asked as you will have read) allowing you to install as UEFI /GPT. But it seems not- you'd still have to convert to GPT.>

    Ooops, apologies for the 'she'.

    It makes one part easier, but creates difficulties in other parts. The question is is it POSSIBLE to convert from MBR to GPT and existence of tools (free?) for that suggests it is. If only we had somebody here that had used one.

    <So no, there's no one simple approach.>

    Exactly. That' why is so important we come up with one that works. As Einstein said "as simple as possible, but not simpler".

    <Since I am talking here about restoring a cloned image, ***not installing the OS***, WILL it trigger activation? That is one of the questions I've asked.>

    At some point- in your case ensuring Windows Update is disabled, you will do that by connecting to the internet. It is the interaction with MS's activation server that's needed as far as I know.

    If it's POST-restore with Wupdate disabled it's fine. What is important is not to force connection before it s disabled, such that it won't mess with the restored copy. The question is : can Wupdate be disabled as long as the server access has not been satisfied? Or will Wupdate be required until such time as the connection is established?

    This is why I have been so insistent asking about license. As I understand it:

    There is:
    * the license on the target (W10/11).
    * two licenses on the source:

    Product Name: Windows 10 Pro
    Version: 10586.679 (64-bit OS)
    Product ID: 00330-80000-00000-AA850
    Installed Key: VK7JG-...
    OEM Key: G99NM-...
    OEM Edition: Win 8.1 RTM Professional OEMM

    The installed key is of the upgrade by me of OEM W8.1 to W10 Pro.

    What exactly happens when I boot the target after restore? I got two conflicting opinions on this: you said it will settle on the target license, somebody else said it will reject the restored version. If the former, does it still require activation? If the latter, what do I do?

    2nd, what if the target is Home version?

    Without knowing all this, I may do all the work, only to fail.

    <No difference whether you cloned, copied partitions, restored images or copied the bits individually.>

    You know this better than me. But I was told here that full cloning is the only way to ensure ALL customization is preserved. That's critical for me because it has been done continuously since W10 1511 and there's so much of it, so many details that it's impossible to redo. If I cannot ensure this, the value of the whole effort is drastically reduced.

    - - - Updated - - -

    @cerberus, @dalchina, @quandary

    Here is how @dalchina said earlier it was done successfully:

    "You can actually restore a Macrium image of your Legacy bios/MBR system to a UEFI/GPT machine ... To migrate the installed W10 OS from the old Legacy/MBR machine to a new UEFI/GPT one, I first clean installed ***the same version of Windows 10 (20H2)*** on the new machine in UEFI/GPT mode. Then I restored just the C: partition from the Legacy/MBR system image to replace the C: partition created by the clean install. ***Finally I ran the Macrium recovery drive's 'fix Windows boot problems' tool to create the correct BCD entry***. The end result was all my old system and installed apps running on a modern UEFI machine."

    Now I recall why I wanted to first install my old W10 before the restore. But note the OS version: 20H2!

    According to "How to Convert Windows 10 from Legacy BIOS to UEFI without Data Loss" (Convert Windows 10 from Legacy BIOS to UEFI without Data Loss

    "Starting in Windows 10 ***version 1703 build 15063***, you can use the MBR2GPT.EXE command line tool to convert a disk from Master Boot Record (MBR) (used in Legacy BIOS) to GUID Partition Table (GPT) (used in UEFI) without having to clean install Windows 10 or modifying or deleting data on the disk. "

    My W10 is version 1511, so MBR2GPT will not work.

    Somebody asked MS which Windows versions will boot on GPT and got the following reply "Yes, all versions can use GPT partitioned disks for data. Booting is only supported for ***64-bit editions on UEFI-based systems***." (https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/...7-ffa625629de6)

    I understand this to mean that W10 1511 64bit should boot on GPT, right? (subject to license/activation issues).

    The problem is that AFAIK Macrium 'fix Windows boot problems' tool is on a recovery disk IFF created with the ***paid version***, which costs $139, which I can't justify just for this restore. Any free alternatives?

    - - - Updated - - -

    For those who don't understand why I stick to W10 version 1511, in doing the research for this project I came across the following.

    https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/...e-71efea98cbc2

    This was the rule during that exact time when version 1511 was updating to 1703 and I wanted nothing to do with MS updates, which did and do not bring anything useful to me.
    Last edited by sgeneris; 12 May 2023 at 17:30.
      My Computer


  10. Posts : 42,944
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)
       #70

    The problem is that AFAIK Macrium 'fix Windows boot problems' tool is on a recovery disk IFF created with the ***paid version***
    ,

    Untrue- it's available in the free version. Or certainly always was.

    "Starting in Windows 10 ***version 1703 build 15063***, you can use the MBR2GPT.EXE command line tool to convert a disk from Master Boot Record (MBR) (used in Legacy BIOS) to GUID Partition Table (GPT) (used in UEFI) without having to clean install Windows 10 or modifying or deleting data on the disk. "

    My W10 is version 1511, so MBR2GPT will not work.
    That's correct, but there's more than one way:
    Convert MBR Disk to GPT Disk in Windows 10

    HOWEVER note the limitaiton on the number partitions on the source disk that applies to at least one method.

    If it's POST-restore with Wupdate disabled it's fine. What is important is not to force connection before it s disabled, such that it won't mess with the restored copy. The question is : can Wupdate be disabled as long as the server access has not been satisfied? Or will Wupdate be required until such time as the connection is established?
    Bear in mind there are plenty of valid ways to disable Windows Update- which you can do having done everything offline.
    Then create a full disk image of what you have- which you should do at each and every successfully achieve stage so as to avoid loss of time, work and your hair.

    When ready, enable your internet connection for activation.
    Provided you don't manually check for updates and Windows Update is disabled, you can try to activate Windows.
    I don't personally know if disabling WU has anything to do with activation. I would hope not.
      My Computers


 

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