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I have a 250 gig hdd and a 240 gig ssd. I want to transfer the data from the 250 gig hdd to the 240 gig ssd. I have tried a variety of methods with no success: (keep in mind i can boot perfectly from the hdd and dont have any problems within windows)

When I use the intel transfer utility (made by acronis), around the 140 gb mark it fails because of "could not read from sector"

If i use windows backup to make a system image then i use the windows install dvd or system restore disk, it fails to restore.

For the rest below i used gparted to resize the partition so that there is 230 gb of data and 20 gb of unallocated space at the end.

When i use dd if=/dev/sdc of=/dev/sda bs=1M, I get an I/O error again at ~140 gb and it quits.

When i use dd if=/dev/sdc of=/dev/sda bs=1M conv=noerror,sync. It never finishes. When i run 'sudo kill -usr1 (dd process)' It seems to be going but no data is transferred and it spams out i/o error.

If i use clonezilla, the basic mode fails because the hdd is bigger than the ssd.

If i go advanced and use block by block copy and "rescue" which should ignore errors, it still throws a lot of errors and becomes completely incoherent like: enter image description here

Is there something obvious im missing, is there any other methods? Is there a way to clone the files without using a cloning tool (such as using rsync or cp in linux)?

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2 Answers 2

dd isn't designed to handle systems with bad sectors. Resizing the drive was a mistake, you NEED a drive big enough for all that data, but hopefully this won't stop you from being able to do the image using the right tool. Getting a bigger hard drive for the backup is a VERY VERY good idea.

Boot up a livecd of ubuntu and install gddrescue in it - its a recovery-centric varient of DD that should help get as much data as possible out. Use that - its as simple as ddrescue input_device output_file (but check the instructions anyway) and it will image as much of the drive as possible. You can then loopmount the image as per normal. If you image the root device (/dev/sdX rather than /dev/sdXx) then you can use kpartx to mount it.

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I had some free space, and after the resize, I can still boot and use windows. I never knew I had bad sectors until this incident. There seems to be no problem with the original hdd, its just that cloning to the ssd results in some serious looking errors. Upon running chkdisk, they found 0kb in bad sectors. –  agz Jun 20 '13 at 5:32

What you might want to do before trying this again, is run the Gibson spinrite program over your hard disk in the highest possible recovery mode. It will refresh sectors as well as attempting to get as much information off a "bad" sector that it can. Once that is done, you can try the dd again. This has worked for me more times than I can count on questionable disks and the Gibson software has made some of the bad sectors readable in many cases depending on how far gone the disk is.

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