can i clone my windows xp setup onto a new computer

Posted on 2009-04-04
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2016-10-27

My three year old Fujitsu Siemens Celcius H230 laptop running windows XP is starting to make me worried that the hardware may fail. It has seen heavy use, and the thought of getting a new computer functioning to my satisfaction in the same way, i.e. installing all the programs, adjusting all the settings, etc, is making my heart sink. I hope there might be a way to clone _everything_ off the hard drive on to a new computer, to get it working in exactly the same way.

My guess is a) this is doable if the new computer is identical, hardware wise, but b) if the new computer differs even slightly, it may be very challenging or impossible. The problem with (a) is that my new computer would be no better than the older (which I could probably live with) but in any case, I don't think (but I'm not certain) that new ones of this model are obtainable any more.

Any ideas? Half way solutions also of interest.


Question by:amorphia78
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Expert Comment

ID: 24067011
hi amorphia,

cloning your laptop or pc is an option (using norton ghost or other cloning application). but this could cause/cost you a System crash due to drivers incompatibility which may also lead you to Data loss. your applications might not work the same way to.

in this types of scenario, i have been using Laplink PCmover:

its easier and user friendly.

hope this helps.

tip: "Be resourceful ;-)"


Accepted Solution

rami_ejailat earned 1500 total points
ID: 24067012
Yes, you can :)

You can use Acronis True Image Echo Workstation with the Universal Restore addon.
LVL 12

Expert Comment

ID: 24067034
>My three year old Fujitsu Siemens Celcius H230 laptop running windows XP is starting to make me >worried that the hardware may fail.
What sort of failure symptoms do you get ?

>My guess is a) this is doable if the new computer is identical, hardware wise
Yes you are right you need a similar computer to get the clone working.

If your laptop is about 3-4 years old likely that you a new disk may be of some help. This to be done on the assumption that  your hard disk is about to fail . You could get a new hard disk of similar or larger size than the current HD and make an image.

However, having done that will not improve the performance of windows. It will surely save you  time in installing your desired program.

I would increase the RAM size, change the HD and clean the cooling fan of the laptop and that could give the laptop some more life and power.

A new machine will have a new windows and every thing will have to installed. It will take time no doubt , the effort will give you a cleaner and faster operating system. Also you get a new and reliable hardware.

Hope that helps.

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Author Comment

ID: 24067111
Hi all,

Thanks for all the ideas. The Acronis True Image with Universal Restore sounds like it might work. But the more I think about it, the more it seems like it's too good to be true. For example, wouldn't this allow me to install my software and xp operating system onto as many computers as I wanted, essentially creating a way to pirate software?



Expert Comment

ID: 24067417
Hi amorphia78,

Acronis True Image 2009, Norton Ghost 14 are great applications to use, Also there is one called Migrate Easy 7 by Acronis.

Here are the links:

Hope this works.

Expert Comment

ID: 24067692
Hi Ben,

Frankly, I have registered only today on Experts-Exchange and this was the first question I answered :)
In order to restore the image to dissimilar hardware (new laptop brand), or even to a virtual machine (which is basically dissimilar hardware), or vice versa (from virtual machine to physical machine), you must purchase Acronis Universal Restore (UR) addon.
In fact, Acronis does not require that you buy UR at the time of creating the image like competitor products who offer similar but lower capability. For example, if you bought True Image ECHO (ATI ECHO) at start, and after a few months, you realized you need to restore to dissimilar hardware or virtual machine, you can buy UR addon and still use the same existing images you created previously with ATI ECHO.
Furthermore, you cannot buy the addon separately without having an Acronis ATI ECHO license. And, there's no trial version for UR. Therefore, it's unlikely that a pirate will pay for ATI ECHO + UR to get pirated Windows.
Note that ATI Home 2009 does not support UR. That is, UR is not intended as an off the shelf product for pirates to exploit. ATI ECHO is offered for SMB (Small and Medium Business) and Large Enterprise.
Hi skywalker39,
The Acronis products you suggested will not work. ATI Home doesn't support restoration to dissimilar hardware, and Acronis Migrate Easy is to move your data from an older HDD to a newer HDD.

Expert Comment

ID: 24067736
Hi rami_ejailat,

Thank you for correcting me, originally I thought the question was meant for something else, The Acronis products will not work the I suggested Ben.
LVL 50

Expert Comment

ID: 24068028
amorphia78--I do not think any of these programs allow you to move the operating system.  Both the new and old PC's will have to have an operating system installed to allow the transfer of programs, settings, personal data, etc.  And the old OS would be unlikely to work with the new PC's motherboard.
Therefore you will probably have to buy a new operating system for the new PC either as part of the OEM purchase or as a separate CD purchase for a PC you build.
If the new PC uses Vista you can use the free EasyTransfer program .

Expert Comment

ID: 24068254
I'm afraid you are mistaken; perhaps you didn't check the products and the links properly.
You are referring to file-based backup, however, this is not the case with corporate level backup, which must use disk-imaging type of backup for the purposes of business continuity. Acronis products support both types and much more.
Acronis Universal Restore addon is created for the sole purpose of moving the complete disk image to dissimilar hardware (whether physical computer or virtual like VMWare and Microsoft Virtual PC).
Furthermore, disk-imaging in Acronis supports bare metal restore, which is, restoring the image to a brand new server/laptop without any OS or software. For more info on this topic, you can refer to Acronis website (the links I mentioned above).
Note: the text I marked in bold are specific techincal terms that you can lookup on the Internet. For example, Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bare-metal_restore
Best Regards,
Rami S Ejailat
LVL 50

Expert Comment

ID: 24068413
rami_ejailat--Thank you for the detailed information.
But is this going to help amorphia78 who seems to have home PC situation?

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31566558
Thanks for all comments folks. I'm accepting Rami Ejailat's solution because it is the only solution offered where the proposer seems confident that the restore should work even when performed onto different hardware. For the record, I have looked into purchasing the necessary software (ATI echo, plus Universal Restore) and it seems they will sell it to anyone with a credit card and 1,329 swedish crowns (I think this is around 150 US dollars?) So it does seem feasible even for non-corporate users.

I now have the issue that I would need to make sure the new hardware was comptible with my XP system - I guess some modern hardware these days only has Vista drivers? But that should probably be a separate question.



Expert Comment

ID: 24068661
Yes. He needs to get ATI ECHO for Workstation + UR addon.
Ben, if you need help buying the software, pls let me know.

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