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Back up internal HD w/eSata drive

Posted on 2013-06-16
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Last Modified: 2013-06-30
What do I need to do to create an image of my internal HD to a external SATA HD connected via a eSATA cable.

1.)  Is the drive available to the bios so that image software (not booting into Windows) can see it ?

2.)  Do I need to provide an external Power to the external SATA drive ?

3.)  Can I boot up in something like Symantec Ghost and copy the image to a eSATA drive ?

Thanks.
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Question by:sidwelle
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rindi earned 668 total points
ID: 39251192
1. Normally yes, it depends on the eSATA controller. Tools like CloneZilla on the PartedMagic LiveCD will see it no matter what controller.

2. Yes.

3. Yes, but I don't recommend any Symantec crap. The PartedMagic LiveCD is far better, or most other tools, like those of paragon, where you can get a free image backup utility if this is for personal use.

http://partedmagic.com
https://www.paragon-software.com/
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by:David
David earned 668 total points
ID: 39251383
Rindi covered most of this quite well, but there are a few gotchas

1. It also depends on the motherboard.  Not all motherboards can boot to an eSATA, even if the eSATA controller says it is bootable.  

2. Make darned sure that the eSATA controller doesn't require special drivers, or says it has some sort of RAID capability, or it says windows only. All big red flags that it won't work or you would have to jump through a lot of hoops to ever get it to work.  Then even if it does work, you may end up with a nasty surprised if you ever have a disaster.

3. I personally just boot to a USB stick with linux loaded on it, and also use parted magic  (well, actually I just use the native dd program from the shell, but parted magic is easy if you're not a unix person) go to pendrivelinux.com and it has free software to make a bootable USB drive.  That way you don't need to use a CD, and you can also set up persistence, so can create an icon or shell script that stays on the stick forever to make this easy.
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by:davidlevans13
davidlevans13 earned 664 total points
ID: 39252771
If you are using Windows 7 you could just create a System Image with Backup and Restore.

Just boot computer normally and set it to backup to the e-sata disk.

If  your drive dies, just use the Windows repair disk to transfer the System Image to a newly installed HDD in laptop.
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Expert Comment

by:stevepo
ID: 39262641
The other experts have covered most of the methods / questions, but I thought I would add that if you are using Windows 7 and go the System Image with Backup and Restore route be aware that when booting from the Windows media to perform a restore you may need the drivers for the eSATA controller in order for Windows to recognize it during the restore process as Windows may not have the drivers natively.  Another option would be to create and boot from a custom Windows install media with the drivers already added.
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Expert Comment

by:David
ID: 39262668
In other words .. backups are easy, they always work even if you have missing drivers and try to back up open database files.

The trick is being able to restore ;)
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Author Closing Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 39288368
Thanks
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