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Transfering System files...

Last response: in Windows XP
December 12, 2005 2:56:39 PM

Here's the deal: I need to transfer all files, including system files, from one partition to another, flawlessly.
After that, I'll remove the HD with the original system files to use as external drive. So I'll need to change the dive letter order also.

I know there's lots of ways to do that... but what do you sugest?
Some specific software? Partition Magic deals with stuff like that? (been a long time since I used it)

Ok, cya!
December 12, 2005 4:23:42 PM

Set up the new drive as "D" (it must be larger sized than the old). This would either be Slaved to your old on the Primary IDE channel, or, as Master alone on the Secondary channel. If you have stuff on the Secondary now, you can temporarily disconnect while you're working the transfer. The transfer will go much quicker in that scenario.

Buy "Acronis True Image". This is a disk clone program I swear by. Trying to transfer via "copy" does not work. Install Acronis on your old hd, and then clone your existing drive to the new (very carefully read the manual - print it out, so that you know what you are doing without guessing). It will do it by way of imaging. It's fast! The whole deal should take about 15 minutes.

When done, take out your old hd and set up your newly created disk as Master on the Primary.
December 12, 2005 5:53:12 PM

Will try that. Only, it's not free... isn't there a freeware option out there yet? XD

Anyways, I tried with partition magic... there's a "copy partition" option.
It really copied fast the os partition.. BUT, seems it didn't copy system files. I tried to boot from it, after properly changing drive names, still, no boot.
Then, Partition Magic has a "Install another operating system" option... but it works only for "Disk 1" which I guess is Master HD on Primary IDE Channel only.

Isn't there a way to run WinXP Boot CD and make it install only system files? Such a simple task sometime ago (sys c:) ... XD
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December 12, 2005 8:55:11 PM

Partition Magic used to be excellent when Windows was DOS-based. XP is a whole other deal. As you found out, it didn't transfer over a bunch of files; and no telling, really, what is missing.

As to FREE, I have tried Maxtor's (& Seagate's) utility with very mixed success. Works about 1/3 of the time and it takes a lot more clock time; sometimes an hour or more. I have no confidence in their product for system transfers. I freelance as a comp tech/troubleshooter and my time is valuable. I've used Acronis 18 times with perfect results since June.

I know it's $30-40 some-odd dollars (I don't remember), but it works great and it's fast. If you invest in it, I'm sure you'll use it over and over for various reasons.
December 12, 2005 11:41:03 PM

Yeah, I'm kinda tired of PM problems also...
I'm trying it the hard way, since I'm kinda in a hurry. I just copied, removed the drive, now I'm fixing WinXP installation with boot CD.
But I'll try Acronis software... valuable information from someone who has to deal with this sort of stuff everyday. Seems to be not only better than PM, but also has a bunch more utilities!
Thanks for the info! This forum has been a lifesaver to me... :D 
December 14, 2005 5:21:07 PM

Norton Ghost.. you can download the exe or PM me and I'll email you the old version.. it's like 200k.
December 14, 2005 6:07:05 PM

I managed to do it... somehow. :p 

Lots of stress, lots of bugs, lots of problems... but thanks GOD it's over. XD
Had to reinstall WinXP 3 times. Had all sorts of problems with renaming the drive letter, some problems with drivers from my MSI motherboard, and other stuff.

Next time, if there is a next time, I'll use Acronis software, or Norton Ghost... or maybe next time all software and games I need will be available on Linux. :p