Replacing my C drive
August 30, 2005 7:41 PM   Subscribe

I'm running win2k. Both my hard drives are pretty much full, and the C drive is tiny, so... I want to move all its data to a new drive, which will then be bootable like the old one. Am I dreaming? If not, how do I do it?
posted by squidlarkin to Computers & Internet (7 answers total)
if you can boot up a unix OS from a cd, you could use dd to copy the bootblock/etc and put it somewhere on the web.

If that's out, you can use something like Norton Ghost (there are a few other ones, including one that's more popular than Ghost, but Ghost is what I've used) to make a HD image, and install that image onto the new drive.

The first is free but requires a bit of meddling, the second isn't free, but is significantly easier.
posted by devilsbrigade at 8:05 PM on August 30, 2005

I did exactly same with Acronis. But it is not free.
posted by flyby22 at 8:34 PM on August 30, 2005

I havent tried them, but there's a list of free imaging tools here
posted by Boobus Tuber at 8:48 PM on August 30, 2005

Last time I did this, I found a piece of software provided by the vendor of the new drive (Seagate) that did exactly what I needed: copied everything from the old C drive to the larger drive and made it the new (bootable) C drive. It was called DiscWizard.

I'm not sure if it will work on non-Seagate drives (don't know why it wouldn't, but they may prefer to limit it), but if not check your drive vendor's site and see if they have something similar.
posted by hashashin at 9:41 PM on August 30, 2005

I used a piece of Maxtor software to do this (MaxBlast), and the results were less than thrilling. It took several hours to complete the "copy", and apparently succeeded in NOT copying anything, and corrupting the boot drive.

Just my experience.. Vendor software is sometimes less than stellar. Next time I have to do this, I'll use imaging.
posted by Jack Karaoke at 10:35 PM on August 30, 2005

A friend of mine posed this exact question to me last week. I went over to help him out, and tried using the software that came with the drive, the aforementioned MaxBlast, which claimed it could do exactly what is desired. After 7 hours, it "completed," claiming complete success. This, however, was not the case.

I booted up into a copy of Damn Small Linux I carry rubberbanded to my wallet, and typed a few lines into bash and had it worked perfect.

I used dd to copy the small drive to the big drive with dd if=/dev/hda of=/dev/hdb BS=1

Now, at this point, all the space on the larger HD in excess of the smaller is unpartitioned and useless. I used fdisk to fix this: fdisk /dev/hdb and then made a new primary partition that filled the rest of the space. After changing the jumper to make the new disk master, we rebooted to 300 gigs of joy.
posted by adamwolf at 11:16 PM on August 30, 2005

Maxtor MaxBlaster link (it's worth a go and I've used it successfully)
posted by seanyboy at 12:59 AM on August 31, 2005

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