Casey Bralla on 30 Sep 2008 20:21:06 -0700

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[PLUG] Need Advice on Cloning A Disk Drive - Success!

I succeeded in my quest to upgrade my hard drive today.  I thought the list 
might be interested in how I finally did it.

Objective:  As you may remember, I wanted to "clone" a functioning 80 GByte 
disk onto a 200 GByte disk on my Gentoo system, while at the same time 
changing from the ReiserFS to ext3 file systems.  I had had trouble copying 
pseudo file entries (like /dev/dsp) on the hard disk, and had been 
unsuccessful booting to the new drive.  I got lots of good suggestions on how 
to do this, and this is the process I finally used:

1.  Install new disk as slave (/dev/hdb)
2.  Partition new disk and create ext3 file system on /dev/hdb1
3.  Boot to live CD (I used Knoppix)
4.  Mount old disk (/dev/hda1) and new disk (/dev/hdb1)
5.  Use rsync to copy **all** the files from /dev/hda1 to /dev/hdb1
6.  Remove original hard disk, and install new hard disk as master
7.  Boot again to live CD
8.  Mount new disk (now it is /dev/hda1)
9.  Chroot onto new disk
10.  Run grub to initialize the MBR on the new disk
11. Reboot to "Nerdvana"


It has been suggested that I didn't need to copy all the device files from the 
old disk.  I don't know, but I wanted to be sure I had copied every "stub" of 
the device files left on the original disk.  For some reason, the normal copy 
commands would **not** copy these files.  However, rsync seemed to have no 
trouble at all (at least, it never complained if it did).

I think my most critical failure previously was to not chroot into the new 
disk before running grub.  I also had tried running grub when the new disk 
was still the slave.   I'm not sure if this had an effect or not, but....


Casey Bralla
Chief Nerd in Residence
The NerdWorld Organisation
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