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SSD backing up to HDD - Alignmrnt concerns

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September 21, 2012 1:41:11 PM

Greetings,

I currently have an XP machine with an SSD as my main drive, I use Acronis to backup the drive to an internal HDD each night. I have read about people having issues with alignment when backing up to an HDD.
I cannot afford to reinstall the OS as there any many applications that we no longer have the media for.

my question is this:

Is there a way to back up the SSD to an HDD without alignment issues? if I select a "sector by sector" backup would that solve the problem? and if there is no way to backup to the Hard disk without issues, should I use another SSD as the backup? would that side step the alignment issues?

any advice would be appreciated.

Don
a b G Storage
September 21, 2012 1:55:29 PM

DHFF said:
...I cannot afford to reinstall the OS as there any many applications that we no longer have the media for....

you will be Forced to at some point in time, so if you NEED those programs you should find a way to get the files to install them

there is no alignment on an SSD
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September 21, 2012 2:23:24 PM

I just want to make sure if I ever need to restore from the backup that I am not going to have issues. I dont get any error messages when I backup now but I do not want any surprises if or when the day comes that I need to restore and find myself up a creek without a paddle.

Don
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a b G Storage
September 21, 2012 2:23:52 PM

dingo07 said:
you will be Forced to at some point in time, so if you NEED those programs you should find a way to get the files to install them

there is no alignment on an SSD


Hi Dingo07...

From my understanding and from what I've read, the alignment of an SSD is required to assure that a logical sector starts exactly at the beginning of a physical page of the SSD. Without it he sector boundaries and the page boundaries will not match and sectors will span pages.

Typically when one installs lets say Win7, the OS installation does this automatically however if one is to image a HDD to an SSD for example, then the offset or alignment will need to be verified.

Unless I'm not understanding something please correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks
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a b G Storage
September 21, 2012 4:05:29 PM

Every installation of Windows on a new HDD or SSD has alignment set for the drive, properly, starting with the partition the OS is installed on. If you add partitions, the same factors for creating the first one is used to create the next, and so on. Therefore, there's no alignment issues.

With regard to a backup, if you're restoring an image, its overwriting whatever data is current with what's in the image, therefore, there shouldn't be any alignmnet issues.

It's a partition treatment, and worst case scenario would make the access time for the data twice as long.

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a b G Storage
September 21, 2012 4:08:48 PM

ELMO_2006 said:
... if one is to image a HDD to an SSD for example, then the offset or alignment will need to be verified....

this the main reason why not to use SSD's as backup devices, and are most beneficial as primary drives installed with the OS to boot from

if you're not using an SSD as a boot drive, you're circumventing the intended use of the architecture, and yes, may run into an alignment issue at some point in time

my $0.02
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a b G Storage
September 21, 2012 4:10:04 PM

DHFF said:
I just want to make sure if I ever need to restore from the backup that I am not going to have issues. I dont get any error messages when I backup now but I do not want any surprises if or when the day comes that I need to restore and find myself up a creek without a paddle.

Don

you won't get error messages if there's an alignment issue, your drive will appear to be up to twice as slow as before
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September 21, 2012 4:34:19 PM

ok thanks for the info. that makes me feel better. the last thing I needed if my hard drive failed was to discover that the Backup wouldnt restore.

Don
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a b G Storage
September 21, 2012 4:40:45 PM

dingo07 said:
@elmo_2006 - I think this is where you got your info (it's a very good read btw)... http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/113967-ssd-alignme...


...yeah and some other locations. I migrated from an internal HDD in a netbook to an internal SSD via an image transfer. The netbook was fine however a friend mentioned that the image transfer may not have properly aligned the SSD and as such there was an on-line calculator that I managed to use to confirm everything was peachy-keen.
I guess in the OP's request he has nothing to worry about however I do appreciate your insight in the matter - thanks

"knowing is half the battle" - :hello: 
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September 21, 2012 5:14:14 PM

Best answer selected by DHFF.
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