My HD is about to die, and I am going to buy a new drive and install everything from scratch. I will like to use the recovery partition on my original drive, but I don't know the correct steps to use the recovery partition on a new drive since it will not be there and I don't know that just a simple copy of all files will work. If I copy all the recovery partition in a pen-drive (flash drive), will I be able to use it in my new hard drive?

if not, what should I do?


Use Clonezilla, a clone of Norton Ghost which is used in most corporate environments to clone OS installs across the corporate network. Clonezilla can be run from a LiveCD, or any bootable media like a USB drive or USB hard disk.

From Wikipedia:

Clonezilla Live allows a user to clone an individual machine. A particular partition or entire disk can be cloned to another medium. This can be saved as an image file or as a replicated copy of the data. The data can be saved to locally attached storage, an SSH server, Samba Server or a NFS file share and then restored at a later date. Clonezilla can be run from either a bootable USB flash drive or CD/DVD. This requires no modification to the machine as the software runs in its own environment.

There are other alternatives that may fit your need better, including the venerable Unix dd command.


I use drivesnapshot for imaging drives. There's a free trial available.


I've never hit exactly this situation, however, I think this will work. Get a new drive the exact size as the old drive, then using a linux live CD you can make an exact copy of the drives using a command like 'dd if=/dev/hda of=/dev/hdb' (be really careful you get the devices right).

There may very well be a better way ... but that's what I'd try ...


If I were going to attempt it, I'd get Rescue-Is-Possible linux and boot with that, then use either gparted to use the graphical editor to copy the partition in question from the hard disk to another drive or I'd use partimage to copy the partition to another drive as an image then restore to the new one. Gparted can also resize partitions and edit them, but I normally use partimage for copying and moving them as files to store on another medium.


I used to be a computer tech. The tools that I used were either Ghost or (which comes on the awesome-and-free Hiren's Boot CD) or Clonezilla.

It's been my experience that some recovery partitions get corrupted when using Ghost. If that happens, Clonezilla has always worked but can take a bit longer.

  • Note: Hiren's Boot CD contains pirated software. – harrymc Oct 16 '09 at 8:09

If OS is XP or Windows try this: https://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/setup/expert/asr.mspx

Just make sure that the replacement HD is the same size as the original, or closely matches the original HD in terms of specs and size.

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