Hard Drive issue on a Win 7 C: Drive

I have a Hard Drive that has problems and every time I boot up my system it wants to run a chkdsk and when I try to run it it stops part way through and crashes my system. After running the Western Digital lifeguard application it shows that I have to replace my Hard drive.

I have the new Hard drive and was wondering if there is any way I can replace it as the C:\ drive without losing any information from my Hard Drive? I tried making a current system image but win 7 won;t let me until I run a complete chkdsk and as I said because the hard drive is bad I can't run it, normally or from the win 7 install CD either?

I was told by someone else to replace the hard drive, reinstall windows 7 then hook up the old drive and see what I can save from it? Mainly I need to save all my emails, documents, and some folders that contain some programs that I wrote while in school.

What would be the best way to save these so i don't lose them?
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  1. That's tough. You could try an opensource option like CloneZilla which will allow you to clone an image of the old drive and then place it on the new one. You can even do disk to disk cloning. Acronis is another good option, but I don't think they offer a freeware or shareware version of their software.
  2. Run a BartPE boot CD with Ghost to an external drive to capture the image. You will have to set Ghost to ignor errors etc. Once you recover to the new drive, Win 7 may have to repair itself to fix any errors copied over.
  3. I'm with them.. I'd try using a 3rd party app to clone the drive, then if needed, use some of Win7's repair features to make it bootable. With any luck none of your data is bad and the image will go smoothly.


  4. I have the drive backing up to another hard drive I have on the system (had to have it ignore errors), Do i do this in this many steps:

    1: remove the bad drive(what is now my C: drive)
    2: install the new drive (new C: Drive)
    3: then reinstall windows 7?
    4: After Win 7 is reinstalled do I then run system restore and restore from the image I'm making now?

    Or what is my next step?

  5. I was hoping for an answer to my last question?

    After I replace the hard drive with the new one, when I start up the PC again do I have the windows install disk in the PC or should I have the windows repair disk I made when I did the drive image yesterday?

    Not sure If I have to do a full install then a restore or just restore from the repir disk I made?

  6. Anyone?
  7. Steps 1 and 2 look right.

    At step 3, it depends on what you used to image it. In general no, I've never reinstalled Windows THEN applied an image on top of it. That seems excessive since the image has (should have) a copy of everything that was there before your drive went bad.

    Win Vista - http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-vista/restore-your-computer-from-a-system-image-backup
    Win 7 - http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/Restore-your-computer-from-a-system-image-backup
    DriveImage XML - http://www.runtime.org/driveimage_faq.htm#restore
    Ghost 15 - https://www-secure.symantec.com/norton-support/jsp/help-solutions.jsp?+Utility+Products=&ct=us&docid=kb20091016094409EN_EndUserProfile_en_us&entsrc=&ispid=&layout=Retail&lg=en&partner=&product=Norton+Backup+&pvid=f-nbu&version=current
    Acronis Home 2012 - http://www.acronis.com/support/documentation/ATIH2012/#17341.html

    Anything else and you'll have to google it yourself. ;) Good luck!
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