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  1. Member
    Join Date: Feb 2014
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    Incidentally this is question is not related to any of the circumstances of my other posts.

    I want to upgrade my laptop sata hard drive. I am trying to understand the best way to replicate my hard drive on the new hard drive but avoid duplicating any possible poor logical condition of the data on the original hard drive.

    For example should one use cloning software or do something like just copy files and recreate the boot record?

    Can one easily replicate the system and files from an old drive with a single partition to one of multiple partitions on a new drive?

    What is the best medium for the transfer?
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  2. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2001
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    Lots of questions in there.

    re: Clone vs. Backup vs. Copy, I think Backup would best serve you, unless you DON'T want to reinstall your OS & Apps. (Sometimes it is quicker - and cleaner - to reinstall the OS & Apps and Restore only the Data files, than Restoring a Clone.) You'll have to decide that. What is so wrong with the original hard drive? Does it need to be defragged? If so, do it now, prior to the cloning. Scandisk/Chkdsk? That should be an regular ongoing job anyway.

    Likely your reconstructed Ghosted boot record would be subsequently modified (assuming your replacement HDD is larger - which it almost always is) by a good partitioning software.

    Why do you want to use multiple partitions on the new drive? Very few reasons would justify this, performance & safety-wise.

    Best medium would be fastest & largest possible. We don't know how large your HDD is now, so...
    External HDD (not the intended replacement drive but a 2nd) is good, plus then you can later use it as a regular backup HDD.
    If the size needed is not huge, DVD sets could do the trick, with the added utility of being a good, stored fallback restore point.

    Scott
    "When will the rhetorical questions end?!" - George Carlin
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  3. Member
    Join Date: Oct 2004
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    Originally Posted by Cornucopia View Post
    Why do you want to use multiple partitions on the new drive? Very few reasons would justify this, performance & safety-wise.
    Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. 1000 times yes.

    The only justification I've seen for this is that some people want to dual boot, but in the vast majority of cases the same need can be filled just as well by only having one partition and one bootable OS and running a VM for the other OS under the one you boot.
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  4. Member johns0's Avatar
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    If you are using windows 7 use backup and restore,it will do an image as well as backup files.
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  5. Member
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    . The only justification I've seen for this is that some people want to dual boot, but in the vast majority of cases the same need can be filled just as well by only having one partition and one bootable OS and running a VM for the other OS under the one you boot.
    I have used VM before running some simulation software and it seemed very laggy and experiments took a long time. At the time I put this down to the fact that i was using a VM. Do you think using a VM should be in practice no different to running the OS from a second partition? What are the risks of using a second partition? How is performance affected?
    Last edited by hardya; 25th Feb 2014 at 15:26.
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  6. Member
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    Originally Posted by johns0 View Post
    If you are using windows 7 use backup and restore,it will do an image as well as backup files.
    Sorry. To clarify. I am looking to upgrade my laptop internal drive rather than have an external drive for "back up".

    So I'm not familiar regarding the image, using Win7, can this be written directly to the new hard drive so it will be just like the old one regarding boot up etc? Even after defrag and chkdisk (does ntfs drive need chkdsk? - some say no) I guess the much older disk will probably 'still' have imperfections, unused areas, fragmented files right? Will these imperfections be duplicated on the new disk? If so will this matter?

    Regarding "medium" I really meant the means of transferring/connecting. So just put the drive in a USB enclosure and connect to the laptop with the old drive or some other strategy?
    Last edited by hardya; 26th Feb 2014 at 06:23.
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  7. Member
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    Originally Posted by jman98 View Post
    Originally Posted by Cornucopia View Post
    Why do you want to use multiple partitions on the new drive? Very few reasons would justify this, performance & safety-wise.
    Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. 1000 times yes.

    The only justification I've seen for this is that some people want to dual boot, but in the vast majority of cases the same need can be filled just as well by only having one partition and one bootable OS and running a VM for the other OS under the one you boot.
    +1. Multiple partitions are normal in linux (which has a more robust file system) but I don't see much need for it in Windows. You're just multiplying the possibility of failure in the future. A least if you were dual booting windows and linux it'd be reasonably straightforward to fix. Not in dual boot windows.
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  8. Member
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    Originally Posted by hardya View Post
    . The only justification I've seen for this is that some people want to dual boot, but in the vast majority of cases the same need can be filled just as well by only having one partition and one bootable OS and running a VM for the other OS under the one you boot.
    I have used VM before running some simulation software and it seemed very laggy and experiments took a long time. At the time I put this down to the fact that i was using a VM. Do you think using a VM should be in practice no different to running the OS from a second partition? What are the risks of using a second partition? How is performance affected?
    Any modern CPU can easily handle the demands of a VM. I can't speak to what you ran in a VM or what kind of hardware you had to use as I'd need a lot more info than "It sucked" (not your exact words, but your point) to comment on it. VM response can also depend on how much memory you can give to it, so a memory starved VM won't run well.

    Using a 2nd partition provides no benefit at all in modern Windows. In fact, it just makes everything unnecessarily complicated. You've yet to state why you think you need this, so until you are willing to tell us what you are trying to accomplish, we can only speak in general terms that generally it's not a good idea. Some inexperienced users do it because they remember from years old when older versions of Windows did actually have size limits on disk drive partitions and you HAD to do this. They don't know that that old requirement has long been gone. Others think that they are gaining some kind of performance benefit by doing this or they want to segregate some files into a D: drive that are work files but they fail to understand that by not putting those files on a different physical drive, they still have a single point of failure.

    Hoser Rob - the odds of the OP using Linux are low. Yes, Linux usually does use multiple partitions, but experienced users wouldn't come here referring to the disk that way and experienced users would likely know how to use "dd" any way.
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  9. Member
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    also I think just in case create such a copy of his system with all the programs and keep up the pores
    - need to study the program Acronis True Image (there are nuances partitioning)
    I wish you a successful porting
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  10. Member
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    Dual core IntelŪ PentiumŪ Processor T4300
    3 GB Memory DDR2 SDRAM (1x2GB, 1x1GB) 800 MHz
    HDD 380GB currently very full probably needs archiving of content or upgrading to larger disk.
    Host OS Win 7 Prof x64
    VM OS some Linux (Ubunu maybe)
    Software Omnet++ network simulator
    Software allows to specify number of CPUs for parallel execution of experiments
    Execution expected to be long running high CPU usage.
    May want to access files at other times from host OS.

    Sorry for the lack of info hope this helps.

    Sorry for my inexperience / being inarticulate.

    Not sure if it's a stupid question but what might happen to scheduled processes on the Win 7 host OS when the VM OS is running? Eg they run? They fail? ...

    Sorry again. Thank you so much for your advice. I really appreciate it.
    Last edited by hardya; 26th Feb 2014 at 09:32.
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  11. Member
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    Originally Posted by hardya View Post
    Not sure if it's a stupid question but what might happen to scheduled processes on the Win 7 host OS when the VM OS is running? Eg they run? They fail? ...
    talk about the impact of systems on each other (main<>virtual)? RAM is not enough for two
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  12. Member
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    I'm not sure I fully understand your response to that point. Perhaps then when the VM is running the state of the host os is roughly analogous to being off or in hibernation, right?

    Or... Yes it IS a stupid question!
    Last edited by hardya; 26th Feb 2014 at 10:14.
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  13. Member fritzi93's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by hardya View Post
    Perhaps then when the VM is running the state of the host os is roughly analogous to being off or in hibernation, right?
    No.

    When you set up a VM, you allocate RAM to it. I have 3 GB (out of 16 GB) allocated to my 32-bit Windows VM. Plenty for the VM and plenty left over for the host OS. As to other resources, of course the VM must run on the same hardware. As noted, anything fairly recent should have no trouble running a VM. Surely you wouldn't run resource-intensive tasks on both at the same time?

    Personally, I only do resource intensive tasks on the host OS; the VM is for the web, pretty much. BTW, if you get malware in the VM, you just shut it down and delete the VM folder and copy over your backup VM folder to the root of your C drive. But you gotta have a copy somewhere though, it would be stupid not to.
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  14. Member
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    My experience with win7 is that there is from time to time high CPU usage from unsolicited processes running in the background so to speak. Is my first task to identify (were that possible) anything which may kick these off and carry out appropriate configuration or can I reasonably assume the effects of these will be automatically mitigated in some way?

    Based on what you say if they are not addressed I would expect them to impact on the progress of the long CPU intensive tasks running on the VM. No?
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  15. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    Win7 (and likely 8.x) can be tweaked just like earlier versions, such that YOU tell the OS what processes to run, their priority level, when, etc. And not counting for momentary/instantaneous spikes in processor utilization, a properly outfitted Win7 box shouldn't have background usage problems, PERIOD. Maybe you've got a pre-installed OEM box loaded with crapware. I've seen more than my fair share of boxes in need of a good trimming. Kind of like the US obesity epidemic, now that I think about it.

    Scott
    "When will the rhetorical questions end?!" - George Carlin
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  16. Member fritzi93's Avatar
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    @hardya

    Huh? You're making this more complicated than it needs to be.

    You can tune your Services (Administrative Tools) to set those unneeded to disabled, and others to manual. And/or you can enter msconfig into "Run" or the command prompt to select what gets loaded on startup. Plus some other tweaks you can look up.

    That's all by-the-by for a VM. Unless you have a CPU intensive program that will *only* run on an older OS running in a VM, I see no good reason to want to run such programs in a VM. Others may disagree. Again, if you have a program that only runs in, say, XP, then I can see it.

    I forgot to add: in a multi-core computer, you also have to configure the maximum number of cores to allow the VM to use. I have two cores allocated to mine, which is no doubt overkill considering what I use my VM for. Anyway, that's how it works in VMWare, dunno about configuration in the VM Windows has on offer. Both are free, by the way.
    Last edited by fritzi93; 26th Feb 2014 at 13:27.
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  17. Member
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    . You can tune your Services (Administrative Tools) to set those unneeded to disabled, and others to manual. And/or you can enter msconfig into "Run" or the command prompt to select what gets loaded on startup. Plus some other tweaks you can look up.
    Hmm sounds complicated.

    . That's all by-the-by for a VM. Unless you have a CPU intensive program that will *only* run on an older OS running in a VM, I see no good reason to want to run such programs in a VM. Others may disagree. Again, if you have a program that only runs in, say, XP, then I can see it.
    Looks from this like I should either put ubunu in a different partition (many advise strongly against this) or make Ubuntu my host OS and win7 (which is the most used OS) the VM OS (some advise against this and it may confuse some other users and may represent significant work from the current position) or put Ubuntu on another suitable machine (which may be costly).
    Last edited by hardya; 26th Feb 2014 at 17:30.
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  18. First off, you should take this as an opportunity to start fresh and just do a re-installation. In case you don't have Win 7 install discs, use the the system restore option from the laptop manufacturer (read your manual or check the FAQ for your laptop) it will have an option to let you make backup DVD's (could take as many as 13 blanks) to restore your laptop.

    When you clone a drive that uses a "known" file system, the clone software reads the files off the drive one by one defragmenting them in the process. Cloning software only makes perfect copies of drives when you use the sector by sector cloning method. Use Paragon Backup & Restore Free to clone your drive. If you select the entire drive it will also copy the manufacturer's restore partition.

    One reason you would want to partition the drive is to keep the size of your backup image small, but that implies you have set your download folder to the other partition and you don't save all your photos, MP3's... to the C drive. A more practical approach is to use backup software that has incremental backup functionality like Acronis True Image.

    If you only want to experiment with Linux, just use YUMI to download the distro of your choice and create a bootable flashdrive. If you get a USB 3.0 flash drive, you can run any live CD almost as if it was installed on the HDD. No messing around with partitions and re-installs and what not when ever you want to try something new. On a 16 GB drive, you can have 3 or more different distro's that you can choose from at boot time.
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  19. Member fritzi93's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by hardya View Post
    Hmm sounds complicated.
    Well, you brought it up. I should have said quit worrying about background processes and left it at that.

    As to running a program that's CPU intensive in a VM, same thing. My response was too detailed. Surely you wouldn't want to run anything CPU intensive (like encoding) on *both* the host OS and the VM at the same time would you? So don't do that, and stop worrying about it.
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  20. Member
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    Personally, I don't see any problem with running multi-boot on different partitions provided he knows what he is doing.
    VM is easier and doesn't take as much work getting it going.
    With his computer specs, VM probably won't work that well...at least virtualbox since it uses resources.

    With my low power Laptop, I decided to go with multi-boot over VM since multi-boot doesn't bog down cpu or memory.
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