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Part of my problem is pretty common: I bought new HDD for my computer (notebook) and now want to move Windows XP system to the new disk.

My specific problem is that the system on the old disk doesn't have its own partition. It shares one disk-wide partition with another 250GB of my work data.

I tried couple "disk imaging" apps that should be able to move my system. Namely EaseUS Todo Backup and Macrium Reflect (trial versions) but when I choose "System backup", both offer only to create image of whole disk.

I need to copy only system installation data and data connected to it - like 'Documents and Settings' and 'Program Files' dirs. Making a (unnecessarily) huge image of whole disk woun't solve it in my situation.

Am I doing something wrong / missed some settings in some of the apps ?
Or do full versions of those apps support what I need ? (I found little info on the apps webs.)
Is there a way to do it some other way ? Perhaps using some other tool ?

EDIT: Thanks for clarifications on cloning bootable partition. What about simply copying all system files and dirs to new disk and then making it bootable / repair system boot ? I remeber it should be possible somehow (I probably have done that in the past), but Im having hard time finding the old tutorials for it.

Thanks for any advice.

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You simply cannot selectively copy a bootable OS partition. The Windows registry effectively prevents that. Copy/clone the entire partition, and then use the 'add/remove programs' utility to remove installed programs and Windows Explorer for deleting files & directories. But my preferred method would be to perform a fresh install. But I did this for 2 WinXP systems this month, and Windows Update is non-responsive to old (not SP3) versions. You have to manually download and update the XP system to SP3 and IE8. –  sawdust Dec 26 '13 at 7:08
    
What about simply copying all system files and dirs to new disk and then making it bootable / repair system boot ? (Edited my question also) –  Riva Dec 28 '13 at 9:44
    
My original comment still applies. If you did this in the past, then it was probably a simpler OS like MS-DOS. –  sawdust Dec 28 '13 at 21:40
    
As far as I remember I have done this with Windows 2000. Thats of course a long time ago and I think the process was quite complicated. -- (MS-DOS of course was so simple it was possible to copy its installation from one PC to another and it didn't find a difference :) But that doesn't apply to us in 2013) –  Riva Dec 29 '13 at 21:23

1 Answer 1

I have only used Easus (the free version) to clone the drives I needed to do. That has been the most reliable software I have found. Not that I have used a lot of different ones, but it has been a few. If you find something that works, why look farther.

In my experience there is no selective way to clone a disk and still have it bootable after cloning. It is either all or nothing. If you only need the system software (OS), run the pc after the cloning is done to verify the cloning, then delete the unneeded data.

The cloning can be done so you do not need to be there, so set it and get into something else for the few hours, well maybe more, that it takes to do the clone. If the destination drive is bigger than your source drive, it will make a partition the same size as the source disk. Resize the partition using a partition manager like Gparted to resize the partition to its fullest.

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