Re: How to transfer image to a new drive

"Shane Devenshire" <shanedevenshire@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message

Using VISTA Ultimate on an IBM T60p laptop. I am going to upgrade the
hard drive from 100 to 320 GB. I have a 300GB SimpleTech external drive.
I want to copy (image) the current hard drive to the SimpleTech, replace
the hard drive and copy the image of from the SimpleTech back to the new

1. Can this be done?
2. What software should one use?
3. Where would one find the steps necessary to do the imaging portion.
(I can handle the hardware.)

Unrelated - why can't I make a post on the Microsoft website to this
Newsgroup? Everytime I click New and choose Question I get a hand with a
explosion symbol and nothing else?

Shane Devenshire

Yes, what you envision is relatively simple & straightforward. You might
want to consider the disk-cloning process as well as the disk-imaging
process to accomplish your objective. We're particularly fond of the former
type of program for many, if not most, PC users as I'll explain below.

Basically what you would be doing (using either type of process) is imaging
or cloning the contents of your present 100 GB HDD to your 300 GB USBEHD,
after which removing that 100 GB HDD from the laptop and installing your new
320 GB HDD in its place. Then simply reverse the disk-imaging or
disk-cloning process between the USBEHD & your new internal HDD. (Another
way of achieving this objective would be to install the 320 GB HDD in your
USB enclosure and image or clone the contents of your internal 100 GB HDD
directly to that device and then install the 320 GB HDD in the system to
replace the 100 GB drive. But your USB enclosure, since it may be a
"one-piece" commercial unit, may not lend itself to that process.)

One popular program to achieve this is the Acronis True Image program which
has both disk-imaging & disk-cloning capability. I assume you've heard of
this program. Acronis does have a trial version available so you might want
to try it out.

The program that we generally recommend for most PC users is the Casper 5
disk-cloning program. (It does not have disk-imaging capability). Before
going any further on why we strongly recommend this program let me say that
if your *sole* objective is undertaking a one-time disk-copying process only
for the purpose of copying the contents of your present HDD to a new larger
HDD, then it's really inconsequential which disk-cloning or disk-imaging
program you use.

But I would hope that you would consider using such a program as a *routine*
backup program that you would frequently use to establish & maintain a
comprehensive backup of your system that would be relatively up-to-date at
any given time. A backup program containing your OS, all programs &
applications, and of course your personal data. In short, *everything*
that's on your day-to-day working HDD. That, in my opinion, is the *real*
value of a disk-cloning or disk-imaging program. And since you already have
the hardware to achieve this capability you're more than halfway home.

We prefer the Casper 5 disk-cloning program for a variety of reasons. It's a
simple & straightforward program that virtually every PC user can "learn" in
a few minutes. It's quite effective in that it does the job it's supposed to
do, i.e., create a precise duplicate of the disk that it has cloned. But
most of all we prefer it because it has a unique (at least unique in our
experience) "incremental-clone" capability which significantly speeds up the
backup process when the program is used frequently (as it should be). I
cannot overemphasize this feature since it gives the average PC user a
strong incentive to back up his/her system at frequent intervals, a most
desirable objective.

Casper also has a trial version available at The
trial version is somewhat crippled in that the resultant clone will be only
as large as the disk-capacity of the "source" HDD, i.e., the disk being
cloned. So, for example, in your case if you cloned your present 100 GB HDD
to your 300 GB USBEHD, the resultant partition on the latter drive would be
100 GB. The remaining disk space would be "unallocated", naturally
disk-space that you could partition or later merge with the 100 GB
partition. This limitation, of course, is not present in the commercial
version of the program.

If you're interested I can provide further details about this program. But
it's a good idea for you (and others who might be interested in similar
types of these programs) to experiment with them, particularly since so many
of them have demo or trial versions available which can give you a good idea
as to their capabilities and whether they meet your particular needs.