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I currently have an Intel D955XBKLKR running Windows XP Pro installed on a single partition RAID-0 configuration made up of two 160 gb Seagate Barracuda 7200 rpm drives. I want to upgrade fresh to Windows 7, but before I do, I want to copy the entire hard drive contents to a third 600 gb drive. I am not concerned with copying boot records, but do want all the hard drive contents including windows system folders, etc. I am fairly certain that if I try to do a straight a copy during Windows operation, I am going to get file lock errors from other processes that are actively using files that I want to copy. So my question is what software can I use to do this type of copy? Would it have to be something that comes with a boot loader?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

I use Acronis, have since version 6

http://www.acronis.com/homecomputing/products/trueimage/

I noticed Norton has a new version of Ghost, I have heard from others is is pretty good also but have no personal experience using it.

http://antivirus.norton.com/norton/ps/us_en_gh.html?om_sem_cid=hho_sem_sy:us:ggl:en:e|kw0000011946|5913808516&om_sem_site=

.

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I want less of an image, and more of an actual copy that I can navigate with windows explorer once I install Windows 7. However, I have heard good things about Acronis, so I'll start there. Thank you for the tip. –  BernicusMaximus Aug 25 '10 at 2:50
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You can mount the image using Acronis, just install Acronis on the new installation of W7, you can then mount the image as a drive letter in explorer, browse the files like any other on the PC. –  Moab Aug 26 '10 at 2:35
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Acronis worked great. I also used some VMWare software to create a VM of the whole machine and am now running it as virtual machine on my new beast of a pc. Thanks for the Acronis tip. –  BernicusMaximus Nov 23 '10 at 2:13
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I've successfully used Symantec's Norton Ghost to take a full image of XP Pro on RAID volumes on on older Intel motherboard with 925 chipset. This was all circa 2005 so I can't comment on recent versions of Ghost and their support for current Intel RAID implementations, but it will probably work.

Norton Ghost would be initiated inside XP but would then restart and boot independently of XP thus avoiding any locking issues.

The resulting image could then be explored within XP. I was also able to restore the image and boot from it.

It all appeared to work as advertised. YMMV.

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