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Transfer Windows 7 to new Larger Drive?

Last response: in Windows 7
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January 4, 2010 4:33:54 PM

My current hard drive has been getting wonky on me. About a month ago it came up with bad sectors. Replaced them with backup sectors. Nothing bad has happen since then, and I scan almost every day just in case. I am considering buying a new 1TB just because it will be newer, and faster. This disk is getting a lot of read/write errors and takes a while to do some stuff now.

My question is, does anyone know if it is possible to transfer your windows 7 partitions to a new drive directly without using a 3rd drive as a medium. The hard drive I am using is 750gb, and as I said, I am getting a 1TB. So does anyone know an easy way I can just plug in the new drive, use software to copy over Windows 7 to the new drive and it still work?

I know Windows 7 installed 2 partitions, so that is what is confusing me. Because I can not even see the other partition it uses.



PS: I have all my files backed up on 2 other drives. So don't worry about that.
a b $ Windows 7
January 4, 2010 5:03:31 PM

Easiest thing would be to clone the current HDD. You have many options. If one of the HDDs (current or replacement) is a Seagate, you can use the free Seagate DiscWizard to do it (Acronis rebranded). You could also try the free CloneZilla. On the paid end, try Aronis TrueImage or Norton Ghost.
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January 4, 2010 5:21:44 PM

I have thought of that. However, I honestly have never cloned a drive so I am not 100% sure how it works. If i have a 750gb drive and I clone it to a 1tb drive, does it still partition the 1tb as 1tb or as 750gb? Also, would it include all the partitions on the 750gb drive? The thing is, when windows 7 installs it adds its own partition for system files, and you can't even see that partition. So I am not sure how that would work out...
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a b $ Windows 7
January 4, 2010 6:11:20 PM

I cloned my Win7 drive and I was given the option (using Seagate DiscWizard) to clone a bit-for-bit copy of my HDD (which would restore the partitions exactly as they were, leaving the extra space on the new drive unpartitioned) or just copy the data (which allows the new partitions to be of any size). When I told it to clone using just the data, it also let me select which partitions I wanted to move to the new drive (two in my case). Both worked. It's pretty easy to clone a drive, and the rebranded Acronis interface of DiscWizard was easy to use. If you have a second computer, you could always access the help files no matter which program you go with.
If you go with the bit-for-bit option, you could also extend whichever partitions you want to into the unused space using either Win7's Disk Management (won't work in all situations) or a third-party tool like GParted (can force resizing independently of the Windows OS, but a little more hassle).
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January 5, 2010 3:13:15 PM

Linux DD command also does bit-for-bit copies between devices. After you copy the drive over, you'll only be using 750GB of the 1TB, so go into Windows and resize your partition to fill. I've been told win7 will let you resize system partitions.
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