Clone Drive Without Installing Software

Posted on 2006-05-02
Last Modified: 2008-01-09
I want to do a clean install of windows download all updates etc... and the make a clone of the installing any programs (so i have an image of my pc without any programs installed)

I Currently Own A Copy Acronis True Image 9. (However I Am Willing To Purchase Another Application If I Need To [Hopefully Not Expensive])

I Want To Be Able To Boot From A CD and Then Clone The Disk And Burn It To A DVD, That Same DVD Must Be Able To Restore The Image Without Requiring The Original CD.

Please Tell Me If You Use, Have Used, or Are Reading From An Online Source.
Also If You Found The Information On A Website Please Post The Link.

Question by:sof_combat
    LVL 6

    Assisted Solution

    Ghost is a good option, or you could use xcopy32 depending on the op sys.
    LVL 47

    Assisted Solution

    LVL 4

    Accepted Solution


    I followed this method (using MagicISO instead of UltraISO, but theoretically any ISO editor will work).

    Worked like a charm.
    LVL 2

    Assisted Solution

    Ghost will allow you to do what you need. If you are on a domain you will need to reimage your drive every 28 days. I believe after 30 days you will run into trouble.
    LVL 13

    Expert Comment

    You already have Acronis True Image sotware and I believe that one of its features is the ability to boot from their CD and make your backup image from their boot CD.  You can also burn it do DVD.

    Have you looked at the Acronis support site:

    LVL 9

    Assisted Solution

    It is however long before the system password is changed on DC's.

    workstatins are not under the same constraints, as they can always rejoin a domain much easier than a DC.

    good Luck,
    LVL 4

    Author Comment

    I was looking for more than just a name, more like a tutorial, I already knew Ghost was an option.

    >dbrunton and RiceyRice
    I will check out the tutorial later tonight because I will be leaving soon.

    Its only one computer, I will clone the disk and I will restore the image on the same computer. The computer isnt on a network, so no need to worry there.

    I did read about that somewhere and have made the boot disk, but I want to know if when I make the backup image of the pc will the DVD boot up and restore or will i need to switch disks?

    Thanks Everyone, I Will Check Back And I Will Split Points If I Need To!
    LVL 2

    Assisted Solution

    There is not enough information to give you a workable solution. It sounds like you want to do this process 'all in one go'. Please correct me if I am wrong, but it sounds like you wish to boot using a CD, and create an image of your hard disk straight onto a DVD? This may not be possible.

    My recommendation is not easy, but when you're done you'll have much more than an image of your hard disk:

    Part 1: Bart PE
    1. Download Bart PE
    2. Download the Acronis True Image 9 plugin for Bart PE
    3. Download driver plugins for your hard disk controller, if you're using SATA, SCSI or a very modern chipset
    4. Make a bootable Bart PE CD. (Full instructions available on

    Part 2: Install Windows
    1. Create a partition of a reasonable size for Windows
    2. Leave some space for a D:\ drive. This should be large enough to hold the image file.
    3. Download all Windows updates, and set everything up the way you want it
    [If you're a complete geek, you can clear the even logs, run Disk Cleanup and delete unnecessary files]

    Part 3: Boot the Bart PE CD
    1. You should have access to the C:\ drive. Delete the pagefile and the contents of C:\Windows\System32\dllcache
    2. Run the Acronis True Image 9 plugin
    3. Image the C:\ drive to a file on D:\

    The most complicated part is creating the Bart PE, but it's well documented and WELL worth it. Having a bootable Windows XP CD is a life saver.
    LVL 13

    Assisted Solution

    >I did read about that somewhere and have made the boot disk, but I want to know if when I make the backup image of >the pc will the DVD boot up and restore or will i need to switch disks?

    There are lots of good advice and alternative here.  But just to address your question above here, Ghost 10 has a Windows XP Pre-Install environment on their emergency boot cd.  Acronis (I believe) has linux operating system on their emergency boot cd.  In both cases, you would boot from the emergency boot cd.  If you had a separate DVD drive, you would put your Ghost backup DVD in that drive.  If you didn't you would take out the boot cd, and put in your DVD backup image from which you would restore.  

    If your backup was on more than one DVD, you would be prompted when to insert the 2nd or 3rd one.

    There used to be software that would put their restore program on the bootable dvd/cd, but I don't think those versions exist anymore (I know Drive Image which is the predecessor to Ghost did that).  The main reason is that building an xp (or linux) pre-installation environment is more complicated today.  Hence, it's a two step process, but not really burdensome.
    LVL 13

    Expert Comment

    >I Want To Be Able To Boot From A CD and Then Clone The Disk And Burn It To A DVD, That Same DVD Must Be Able To >Restore The Image Without Requiring The Original CD.

    Ghost 10 requires you to first install it on your Windows XP system to create the backup image.

    If your requirement is to take the backup *outside* of XP, then I believe Acronis will allow you to
    boot from their cd
    make the backup image.

    You still have to boot from their cd to do the restore though.
    LVL 4

    Author Comment

    I have read all of the posts and have come to the conclusion that the backup cannot be done in a one step process, but the final result can be achieved.

    Solution was mainly taken from RiceyRice. Expert4XP made it clear as to why it would be a two step process.

    Here Is The Solution:
    1) Aconis Must First Be Installed Once
    2) Create The Boot Disk From Acronis
    3) Boot From The Disk And Either Save The Image To A Different Partition or Burn To DVD
    4) Combine The Backup TIB Image With An ISO Image Of The Acronis Boot CD Using An ISO Editor.

    Thanks Everyone Who Helped Out!

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