Copy one USB connected drive to another USB connected drive

kim2vp
kim2vp used Ask the Experts™
on
I have a laptop hard drive that is dying and I want to copy the entire contents of the drive to another identical hard drive so the new hard drive can be booted in the laptop.

Both drives are connected to my computer via usb cables.

I'm happy to purchase something to do this.

Any ideas what program I can get to accomplish this?

The original drive runs windows xp.

Thanks.
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Symantec Ghost can easily handle this.
I woud suggest the driveimage xml stephenbyrd had in his article I have used this in the past to backup and restore a harddrive. It was pretty easy and worked well. And its free.
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Author

Commented:
Thanks for the replies, I have downloaded and installed driveimage xml and I'm trying it now.  It looks like it is going to take 5+ hours.

I'm also going to look at ghost (I have version 7 but I assume the USB option was added since then).

The only issue with driveimage xml is it won't copy the whole drive -- ideally I'd like the entire drive to be copied, not just the bootable partition, it looks like I'll get the XP partition but not the backup partition.

Will ghost copy the entire drive, including all the partitions?

Thanks again for the quick responses.
I use ghost solution suite 11 and using the ghost boot cd you can get all partitions. On our images we have a data partition and reinstall partition. Ghosting the drive with that does get them all.
For future reference. Acronis is a much more stable and robust backup and imaging program. It has a free trial
http://www.acronis.com/homecomputing/products/trueimage/

Author

Commented:
My computer does not have a USB boot option, so you don't get any USB support until you have booted into windows so I don't think the ghost boot cd option would work for me.
as i say try acronis.  Once installed you can create a boot disk that will launch a unix based interface with USB drivers
You could always create a BartPE bootable cd (http://nu2.nu/pebuilder/) which will load your USB support and boot into a "mini windows" environment.  It's fairly easy to setup and since you already own Ghost, you won't need to buy anything.
And by the way, Ghost WILL copy the entire drive, including all partitions.
I use this free software before to clone my hard drive to another
http://www.easeus.com/disk-copy/
Sorry for so many replies, but were you trying to boot into a Ghost CD when you said you didn't have USB support?  If you have both drives plugged in via USB to an existing Windows environment, you'd just need to run Ghost within Windows and you should see those USB drives.

Author

Commented:
Well after 3+ hours of running driveimage xml it stops at 75% with this error:

Error: NotifyException

Read Error: The request could not be performed
becuase of an I/O device error.

Info: Partition Copy Error
Address: 004E1C0D

Stack Dump:

I downloaded ghost so I can try that next, not sure anything will work given that the drive is damaged.
please try acronis as i recommended. I always get good results

Author

Commented:
I downloaded and installed acronis and when I start it up I get this error:

AppName: trueimage.exe       AppVer: 13.0.0.5055       ModName: msvcr80.dll
ModVer: 8.0.50727.3053       Offset: 000046b4
Have you tried ghost yet?

Author

Commented:
ghost is installing now

will report back in a bit

thanks

Author

Commented:
when i select copy drive it reports:

This feature in not enabled. To enable this feature you may need to license the product.

I would be happy to pay if I knew for sure it would work.
Did you have any issues with this drive before you decided to clone it?  Maybe you need to run checkdisk on that drive and make sure you don't have any errors on it before cloning.  Just open a command prompt, change to that drive letter (F: or whatever letter) then type in chkdsk /r  After that try running driveimage again if ghost is giving you feature problems.

Author

Commented:
Yes I have major issues with this drive, it is crashing and fails the drive check program from the mfg.  

I mentioned in my original post that the hard drive was "dying"

I have run chkdsk /r multiple times and it had repaired what it could.

I ran it before I did the first drive image and have run it before each try with both acronis and ghost

thanks
There may not be much more you can do at this point.  I would even suggest backing up manually what data you can for now and be prepared to toss that drive.  If there are physical issues with that drive, it's only going to get worse.

Author

Commented:
I'm currently using the unstoppable copier to backup the drive, I'm not sure if there is a manual way to "build" this new drive so it is bootable.  I'm not sure if simply moving all the c:\ files to the new drive is enough to get the drive to boot up.  Thanks.
noxchoIT Product Manager
Top Expert 2009
Commented:
kim2vp, your internal drive contains bad sectors and most of backup imaging tools will fail to backup it.
Ghost, Acronis, Paragon all of them are designed to backup healthy drives.
There is a tool that can do imaging also but it is designed for imaging bad drives - www.r-studio.com
The product they do http://www.drive-image.com/ is very effective and suits your case exactly.
Moreover you can easily do the task with trial programs. With R-Studio create image.
And with Drive Image restore from that image to new drive. It will backup the drive with bad sectors (tested personally) and let you migrate the drive to healthy one.
i agree with noxcho....your drive may corrupted beyond repair.  please remember that most software setting are written to C:\Documents and Settings\USERNAME\Application Data    you may be able to recover data from their.  Regarding the license keys you can use belarc to recover alot of those:

http://www.belarc.com/    get the free download

Commented:
There is a free & opensource cloning software call g4u that usually work when everything else fail. You might want to give it a try. It is text based, and work very fast.

Author

Commented:
I'm using R-Drive Image to do a disk to disk copy of the drive.  It has another hour to run and then i will post back with the results.

Thanks for all the assistance.
noxchoIT Product Manager
Top Expert 2009

Commented:
Good luck.

Author

Commented:
I'm guessing this is not going to work.  It has been sitting at 66% for a while now and the estimated time left has grown from 36 minutes to 52 minutes.
noxchoIT Product Manager
Top Expert 2009

Commented:
Let it run. On my failing drive it did behave the same but it completed.
Otherwise use R-STUDIO tool trial to image the drive. It does it for sure.

Author

Commented:
OK I am letting it run, it is still at 66% and now up to 1 hour 4 minutes to complete.

Author

Commented:
Still at just 66% with 3 hours and 33 minutes to go.  Should I just let it sit there and run, is there really a chance it'll complete?
noxchoIT Product Manager
Top Expert 2009

Commented:
Cancel it. And run R-STUDIO: http://r-studio.com/
Install trial and run it. In tools find Create Image. It will not copy but create compressed image. Then restore from this image to healthy drive.

Author

Commented:
Installed R-Studio:

Told it to create an image of the G drive.

I got this error:

Error reading sector 148662892 on disk G:
Data error (cyclic redundancy check) (23).

I said IGNORE ALL but its been sitting at 34 minutes left all night. (way longer than 34 minutes)

In the morning it had this error:

Error: Read from disk failed
119 read and 0 write errors were ignored by user

It created the image file at 32gb but it is no good.

So that pretty much means nothing works because this drive is so damaged.
noxchoIT Product Manager
Top Expert 2009

Commented:
Yup. That is correct. Try to restore from created image using Drive Image and see what you get there.
If you have important data worth of paying $400 - 1000$ on the drive then it is time to call to data recovery lab.

Author

Commented:
I was able to manually get the data I needed off the user directory and the drive has been replaced under warranty.  Many thanks for all the replies.

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