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I want to copy my windows 7 partition onto a new hard drive (I've got a linux bootcd with fdisk, which I'm happy using), but I've spotted that there's a boot partition of ~200MB before my main windows 7 partition with some strange settings; fdisk complains that the partition boundary isn't on a cylinder. I've also read that changing this boot partition can cause problems (http://www.mydigitallife.info/2009/01/09/how-to-avoid-200mb-hidden-system-partition-from-been-created-during-windows-7-installation/)

How can I copy my windows 7 partition & the associated boot partition without breaking anything?

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You could dump the 200mb partition, image only the C partition, then run a startup repair on the new hard drive before you attempt booting it, you may have to run startup repair more than once to get it booting again. –  Moab Dec 20 '10 at 22:54
    
Your answer is here: superuser.com/questions/5789/free-partition-migration-tool/… –  SEARAS Oct 29 '12 at 11:36

3 Answers 3

You can use dd within Linux to clone your Hard drive.

dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb

Where /dev/sda is the hard drive you want to clone and where /dev/sdb is the hard drive you want to copy it to. Make sure /dev/sda is unmounted.

This will clone your entire hard drive without compression, any empty sectors will be copied with it. Other partitions will be copied aswel.

You can also make an image of your hard drive you can then restore later.

dd if=/dev/sda of=/path/to/image.iso

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What if I wanted to change other partitions on the disk? Copy just the partition contents? –  thecoop Dec 20 '10 at 17:08
    
@thecoop What do you mean exactly? –  Duijf Dec 20 '10 at 17:53

Try a program called 'clonezilla'. It requires you to boot from it. It copies the whole drive.

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I like Easeus Disk Copy. It's simple, free, and does a sector by sector clone of a drive. I've done this many times to save failing systems.

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