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I have create system recovery image via Steps> Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Back up and Restore (Windows 7). I actually selected all partitions on the HDD. I then replaced my 1TB HDD with a new 2TB HDD. Then I boot into system repair disk. From there I selected restore image from usb disk. It can automatically select the correct system image on USB HDD. Then I start to restore. But then I got an error said it cannot restore the system because it cannot find suitable HDD. However, the new 2TB HDD is correctly located as disk 0 when I look into the diskpart. What did I do wrong? I do not think I need to partition the new disk since the restore is supposed to restore the partition layout too.

The old disk is gpt and with efi partition. I also initialized the new disk as gpt. The old disk contains 2 ext4 partitions for linux, which is not backuped by windows image tool.

From here, it said the new HDD should not contain any partition. But there is no partition on my new HDD. Why I still cannot restore it?

  • Check if the disk is initialized, and if it is initialized as GPT or MBR. Either initialize the disk, or change the mode from one to the other and try again. howtogeek.com/245610/… you will not be able to restore an MBR image on to a GPT disk, or vice versa. – Appleoddity Oct 24 '19 at 4:17
  • The old disk is gpt. And I did initalized the new disk as gpt. – Wang Oct 24 '19 at 5:12
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I am no expert in Windows disk partitioning, but I think you'll need to create a 1 TB partition on your disk, and expand it after it's restored. Images aren't like a big copy/paste operation, it's a bit-by-bit copy, and there's something called inodes that reference a string of bits at given addresses, and for given lengths... a file on your computer is an inode number, a start address, a length, and a text description that you see as the file name, along some other things depending on the scheme. If you were to drop the bit-by-bit image of your 1 TB drive onto your 2 TB drive, it could create conflicts for things like, say, the boot sector that needs to be placed at a specific address on the hard drive, or Windows backup, and recovery partitions, that may not be part of your image.

If I were you, and I wanted to get this done ASAP, I'd try partitioning the disk first so Windows can setup its hidden volumes, and so on, with all the space in a single volume, and if that doesn't work, maybe look at what people did... but what you did there, create an image, I think it's something for backups, really, to be dropped onto an identical disk of the same size, make, and model, usually... I don't think it's meant to migrate your OS from disk to disk, but other people might've used it that way... If you create a new partition that's the exact same size as your old disk, it might let you drop it on there...

If you manage to create a partition the exact same size, and you have a Linux boot disk, you might also be able to use a tool like dd to move the image directly to the disk without any software checks... You might also be able to expand the partition after to take the whole disk, or it's possible that using dd on a larger partition will work, but I'm not 100% certain that this will work 100% forever...

Else, I hope the Windows gurus smile on you, because it might get complicated if you're not used to this sort of thing...

I hope this helps a bit, anyway....

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  • no, actually there are lots of posts about restore system image like this to a larger HDD and then extend the partition afterwards. It supposed to just work. – Wang Oct 24 '19 at 3:13
  • I do not want to dd, because I do not want to restore the linux partitions. Otherwise I will just use clonezilla. – Wang Oct 24 '19 at 3:13
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I finally figured it out. The partition table of new HDD inside the computer will have a read only attribute somehow. We have to use diskpart to remove the readonly attribute:

select disk 0
online disk
attribute disk clear readonly

Then the restoration process will just work.

I have not idea why MS make this process so difficult. The error message can definitely be more specific than No disk that can be used for recording the system disk can be found.

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