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I want to migrate to an HDD with a greater volume than I have now, so I need to clone existing HDD to the new one, then I'm going to insert it and I need it to boot the current Windows 7 properly. After some googling for a software that can create a full copy of hard disk, I decided to use live CD of, say, Ubuntu and run dd command. I thought that one execution of dd command is enough, but then I came across this site http://www.nilbus.com/linux/disk-copy.php and now I'm confused. Why does he copy MBR explicitly and why did he create equal partitions. Is this all optional? Is the only thing I need is one line of dd?

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There's going to be a pretty steep learning curve if you're trying to use the command line in Linux. There are easier methods. Clonezilla is free and relatively straightforward to use. Same initial process in that you'll need to boot into it with a USB drive. Have a look at the documentation, especially resizing partitions. –  archery1234 Aug 3 '13 at 21:12
    
One execution of the dd command will not be enough in answer to your question. You create equal partitions in order to copy the partitions to the new drive. You then need to resize the partitioning to scale it up to the larger capacity drive. It's not optional if you want to use the full capacity of the new drive. –  archery1234 Aug 3 '13 at 21:22
    
possible duplicate of Cloning Win7 installation from HDD to HDD –  Mokubai Aug 3 '13 at 22:48
    
Clonezilla or PartedMagic don't use dd, as it won't adjust the cylinders/heads/sectors to meet the new drive. Also dd copies the blank space and that just wastes time. –  cybernard Aug 4 '13 at 1:17
    
Clonezilla only uses dd for unsupported files systems. It's irrelevant though. If you want to clone a drive, and the target disk size is larger than the source, Clonezilla is a good choice. You'll need to use the -k1 and -r advanced options to create the partition table proportionally and resize the file system . –  archery1234 Aug 4 '13 at 1:31
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I've used the software that Crucial ship with their SSDs with duplication cables - EZ Gig II - and it works great. Lets you do a live copy of the disc, while in use, and then you shut down, pull out the old one, plug in the new, and Bob's your uncle.

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There are a couple of problems with using dd. Firstly as already mentioned it would be quite inefficient as it copies literally everything - better to use the ntfsclone utility for that part. However if you were to use ntfsclone it wouldn't handle the MBR which you'd have to copy separately using dd.

Which brings me to the other issue. The MBR contains more than just the boostrap code for loading Windows in this case. It contains the partition table describing the location (specified both using the CHS and LBA address format) and size of your partitions. A potentially large portion of this information would be different for the new disk.

Using the method on the page you've linked allows you to efficiently copy the information you want (the contents of your partitions and the bootstrap code to actually load Windows) and also avoids the difficulties of correctly setting up the partition table - that would all be handled when you initially create the partitions on the new disk.

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