Windows 10: How to clone a boot drive so I don't have to reinstall? Solved

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  1. Posts : 39
    Win10 Enterprise x64 & Win 7 Home x64
       15 Sep 2017 #1

    How to clone a boot drive so I don't have to reinstall?


    So my current boot drive is running very low on space and I got a spare HDD that's bigger.

    What's the best way to migrate/copy/clone the boot drive over so I don't have to set up and reinstall everything?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    15 Sep 2017 #2

    Macrium Reflect Free Edition is the standard recommendation. Good tool. No cost.

    You'll have to decide between cloning or imaging. Different processes with the same result, assuming it works.


    Macrium will do both.

    Cloning probably "simpler", but anecdotally maybe not as high a success rate.

    Imaging involves making an image file of the partitions on your boot drive and later restoring that file to some other drive. Usually thought of as a backup or disaster recovery thing.

    On the other hand, cloning is a transfer of an existing system in real time, not a restoration, not a "backup". Typically done when all is well and you are just low on space.

    If cloning fails, you can try imaging instead.

    There's a learning curve with Macrium. Not insurmountable, but not a 5 minute study either.

    Tutorials on this web site.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  3. Posts : 38,043
    Dual boot Windows 10 FCU Pro x 64 & current Insider 10 Pro
       15 Sep 2017 #3
      My ComputersSystem Spec


  4. Posts : 39
    Win10 Enterprise x64 & Win 7 Home x64
    Thread Starter
       15 Sep 2017 #4

    ignatzatsonic said: View Post
    Macrium Reflect Free Edition is the standard recommendation. Good tool. No cost.

    You'll have to decide between cloning or imaging. Different processes with the same result, assuming it works.


    Macrium will do both.

    Cloning probably "simpler", but anecdotally maybe not as high a success rate.

    Imaging involves making an image file of the partitions on your boot drive and later restoring that file to some other drive. Usually thought of as a backup or disaster recovery thing.

    On the other hand, cloning is a transfer of an existing system in real time, not a restoration, not a "backup". Typically done when all is well and you are just low on space.
    kk thanks i'll give it a try, looks like a thing i can't do it in under an hour.

    is this method easier/better than Clonezilla?

    If cloning fails, you can try imaging instead.

    There's a learning curve with Macrium. Not insurmountable, but not a 5 minute study either.

    Tutorials on this web site.
    thanks i'll give it a try tomorrow, looks like a thing i can't do under an hour.

    Also is this better/easier than using clonezilla?

    How to Create a Bootable Clone of your Windows 10 Drive - Make Tech Easier
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    15 Sep 2017 #5

    imeem said: View Post
    thanks i'll give it a try tomorrow, looks like a thing i can't do under an hour.

    Also is this better/easier than using clonezilla?

    How to Create a Bootable Clone of your Windows 10 Drive - Make Tech Easier
    I have no personal experience with Clonezilla, but I notice the following quote at your link:

    "Clonezilla’s lack of a GUI can make it challenging to navigate confidently."

    Who needs unnecessary challenges for something that critical?

    And you won't find a lot of people here with Clonezilla experience. Macrium is highly refined and about as intuitive as such an app can be.

    You should make a Macrium "recovery disk" immediately after installing Macrium.

    It's NOT needed if you clone if I recall correctly. Been a long time since I tried cloning.

    It would be needed if you wanted to restore via imaging and your C drive had failed and would not boot your PC.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    16 Sep 2017 #6

    Use Macrium Reflect Free for cloning as others say. As Tina says "simply the best".
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  7. Posts : 39
    Win10 Enterprise x64 & Win 7 Home x64
    Thread Starter
       16 Sep 2017 #7

    ok i'm having issues: when i did it the way like the first screen shot, every seems to work fine, but windows won't let me merge that empty volume with my primary partition.Click image for larger version. 

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    With # 2, i did it manually by moving the main partition first (maximizing it until I have the exact space left for the 450 mb recovery partition, and then moving it). This way failed to clone.Click image for larger version. 

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    With # 3, i reversed the order of the partitions so that I can maximize main partition. everything worked, except that when I boot up, i get the windows 10 BSOD screen.Click image for larger version. 

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    What am i doing wrong?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    16 Sep 2017 #8

    Regarding your first attempt, you say "ok i'm having issues: when i did it the way like the first screen shot, every seems to work fine, but windows won't let me merge that empty volume with my primary partition."

    How are you trying to "merge"??

    I assume you are trying to add that gray 111 GB to the destination partition with the red bar showing 34.70 GB occupied. Correct?


    Are you using Windows Disk Management to do that? I don't think it likes that situation because of that intervening partition with the blue bar showing only 373 MB used. If that blue partition weren't there, WDM could probably "merge" the 111 with the 34.70. It likes to work only on IMMEDIATELY ADJACENT areas--without anything else in the way.

    So try another tool---Minitool Partition Wizard. It doesn't care about that intervening partition.

    Or am I misunderstanding??

    If that won't work, my only suggestion is to try imaging instead of cloning. I have very little cloning experience.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    16 Sep 2017 #9

    Use method #1 to clone. Keep the same layout as was on the original disk. The second partition is the Recovery Partition. Once you get the drive cloned and it is booting up properly, then you install and use MiniTool Partition Wizard free. Move the recovery partition to the end of the drive. The unallocated space then ends up next to the C: drive partition and then you can extend C: drive partition to fill it.

    Best Free Partition Manager for Windows | MiniTool Partition Free

    There are other ways of doing it with Macrium Reflect Free, but the above is just the simplest way.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  10. Posts : 39
    Win10 Enterprise x64 & Win 7 Home x64
    Thread Starter
       16 Sep 2017 #10

    ignatzatsonic said: View Post
    How are you trying to "merge"??

    I assume you are trying to add that gray 111 GB to the destination partition with the red bar showing 34.70 GB occupied. Correct?

    yes, yes, and yes. I was trying to use disk management to extend the 34.70 GB partition to the 111 GB unallocated volume via right click "Extend Volume".

    I'll try using that software to bypass that middle partition
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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