Back Up vs Clone RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am always backing up my C:/ drive to WHS but recently it has started to make noise so I know its time for it to be changed out. I don't want to reinstall everything and would prefer to clone it.


    I am wondering can I use any of the saved WHS backups as a clone to the new harddrive? Or should I just use something like Clonezilla to clone the drive.


    My goal is to get the new drive to be exactly like the old drive.

    Saturday, February 19, 2011 5:05 AM

All replies

  • The backups as you call them are AN EXACT copy of your hard drive - I prefer using the phrase ";Cloned Image, so yea after you put in the replacement hard drive [the new one] , you will end up after the restore an EXACT image of the old hard drive.

    I see only ONE advantage of cloning software - SPEED [hence the amount of time it takes to get it done]. You are going from one hard drive to another hard drive and eliminating the Ethernet bottleneck choke speed of 100/mbs - assuming you don't have gigabyte network cards on the server AND the client PC AND the switch you are routing through.

    When you WHS restore, the estimated times to completion are MISLEADING if you have multiple partitions - the vendors HP, Gateway, Dell, etc. usually have the D: partition as a factory recovery and the C: partition is your Windows Boot and "your stuff".

    When the WHS restore starts, it works backward restoring partitions by restoring the D first, and the C LAST. So when you see the time of 14 minutes you think "wow, this is going fast" and 14 minutes later it now says something like 2 hours 23 minutes because now the restore hit the C drive and that is a new ball game for time.

    Back to cloning software:

    I find it SAFER to use cloning software the boots off a CD and you do your cloning. Why? I never screws around with the Windows registry file.

    GPartIt Live CD is a nice freebie:



    Use Norton Ghost 10+ or higher installed on the old hard drive and clone to the new one.

    Will it clone and work - ABSOLUTELY, Yes. on the new cloned hard drive, but you will NEVER get the cloned drive to work with WHS backups anymore since it modifies vssadmin services in the registry file and I no matter how many REGEDIT edits I do it is always a flop.

    Lesson learned - avoid Norton Ghost and use bootable CD cloning software programs instead.

    Saturday, February 19, 2011 2:51 PM