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Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

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Dieselrider
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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#31 Post by Dieselrider » Sat Jun 14, 2014 6:33 am

asqwerth wrote:I'm not sure if this is a practical solution for you since your home partition is at least 65 GB and I deal mainly with partitions no larger than 20GB, but here is a simple but time-consuming way: Run Gparted from another distro on your hard disk (ie, a distro that is not on the partition you wish to backup) or from a live disk, to carry out resizing, copy and paste operations:

1. create a partition on your spare drive such that the size of the new partition is just slightly bigger than the size of the partition (your root, home etc partitions) to be backed up.

2. right click on the partition to be copied (in the Gparted interface) and select "copy" in the context menu.

3. right click on the partition in the spare disk you are using to store the backup and select "paste" . It'll take some time but the copy will be made.

4. then, resize the backup partition to make it smaller - I reduce the size to just a little bigger than the used portion of the partition.

5. partition your new disk so that the destination partition is bigger than the resized backup partition.

6. copy over the backup partition to your new partition.

If your home partition is on a separate partition as your root partition, you'll have to repeat the process. If all your music, pics, documents and other data files are all stored elsewhere, it's likely your root and home partitions aren't that big and the process won't take that long. However, if your intention is to back up your large data partition, you might want to use one of the other recommendations in this thread.

I have used the cut and paste method to back up 6 to 7 distros in one sitting, when I decided to do some shifting and resizing of the partitions on my hard drive. I pasted them all back later without any problems. Even their UUID identities didn't change (I checked with blkid) after pasting back except for the relocated swap partition.

Grub has to be updated. I didn't touch my distro that holds the controlling grub, so I just booted into that to do so.

If you are transferring your home and root partitions to a fresh hard drive that's going to be your replacement drive in your computer, I think you'll need to install grub in your new drive afterwards. you could probably use the tools on the live Mepis disk, PartedMagic or SystemRescue to reinstall grub.

Again, since I have a copy of my home data, would I need to copy that, or just the root partition? My backup drive is only half the size of the main drive.

Or should I take out the backup drive and just partition the new drive and copy directly to it? Then once the copying is done, remove the old drive and boot to the new drive?

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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#32 Post by joany » Sat Jun 14, 2014 10:26 am

Dieselrider wrote: Again, since I have a copy of my home data, would I need to copy that, or just the root partition? My backup drive is only half the size of the main drive.

Or should I take out the backup drive and just partition the new drive and copy directly to it? Then once the copying is done, remove the old drive and boot to the new drive?
The answer to this depends on how you plan on recovering from a loss of your operating system. I'm assuming your "home data" are the photos, videos, documents, and so forth that are irreplaceable. Backing that data up is a must, of course.

Concerning your operating system, consisting of /(root) and the parts of /home that define your configuration and settings; these can be recreated by re-installing MEPIS from the Live DVD, installing additional software, and configuring everything all over again, of course. So there's actually no "need" to back up your operating system at all. In fact, some people in this forum have stated they don't make backups; they simply reinstall their OS when it gets FUBAR'd, but I'm not one of those people.

Although it only takes me about 1/2 hour to install a rudimentary OS from scratch, it might take days to install all the software I need and to configure the OS to the point where I'm satisfied with it. Even then, I might keep tweaking and modifying my installation for a very long time before I consider it "finished." In fact, I'm never really done with tweaking it. Compare all that time to the ten minutes it takes to restore my entire system from partition images, and I think you'll understand why I make backups of both / and /home and keep those backups up-to-date.

I've had to replace both / and /home either separately, or together, on several occasions (usually because of PEBKAC). Having those backups has saved me many more hours than it took to make the backups in the first place.

But ultimately, the choice is yours. If you think you can install a completely functional operating system from scratch in a short amount of time, then maybe all you need is the MEPIS Live DVD and a backup copy of your important data.
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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#33 Post by asqwerth » Sat Jun 14, 2014 11:08 am

Dieselrider, to expand on what Joany is talking about regarding settings and configurations stored in your home folder, read the first post in this link:

https://forum.manjaro.org/index.php?topic=2673.0

The wiki link mentioned in the first post is incorrectly set out; the URL should be: https://wiki.manjaro.org/index.php?titl ... _partition

Essentially, besides the normal use of the /home folder to store pics and your other data, there are a large number of hidden files storing your personalised settings for the various software and applications you use. To see these hidden files, go to "View" in your file manager and select "view hidden files" .

If you don't have the space in your backup drive to fully copy your whole home partition, read the links above and copy over all the relevant "dot" files to your new home folder.

The only reason I prefer to backup whole partitions is because I have many distros, and for all I know, the settings for the same software I use may be slightly different in each distro. Since my /home is stored as a folder in the root partition rather than as a separate partition, it's no real problem to copy the root partition of each distro.

Since you appear to be sticking to just one distro, there shouldn't be a problem just backing up all the recommended dot files and pasting them back into the home folder or partition of your new installation.

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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#34 Post by lucky9 » Sat Jun 14, 2014 11:10 am

Dieselrider wrote:Maybe I am misunderstanding everything on all levels here. Here is a screenshot of my disc setup currently in the box.The usage in sdb1 (which is my backup) is a couple copies of my home partition and the system restore point I was able to make. So basically, I have my data copied. Do I need an iso image of that or just of my root partition, which is 20 GB in size but, only about 5 GB used in that partition? Isn't that where the system settings and such are stored?
snapshot30.png
I was under the understanding that in using Clonezilla, I would need to have another partition the same size as the one being copied? I can do that if cloning root. I cannot do that if cloning home.
The important thing to take away from your snapshot is the size of the usage of the partitions. Home is only 100 GB of data. Root is less than 6 GB. That will fit on your sdb disk. Using Clonezilla will compress those to about half their original size.

And, no, you do not have to have a same-sized partition to make a backup if you do not use the dd option in Clonezilla. Use the rsync option to make the backup. That will not copy the empty space in that partiton. Then you can use those Images to write both the root and home to partitions that are the same size as the original partitions were. The empty space will be put back in during the recovery.

EDIT: Before recovery you might reconsider the partitioning scheme you've used on sda. At the very least you should have a separate data partition.
One other thing: As soon as possible burn your data (photographs, books, videos, virtual machines, etc.) to Optical Disks. (If you need disks get some that are made in Taiwan or Japan for maximum longevity). You can do this from the booted Mepis LiveDVD.

If the bad HDD is copied then the most important thing is done. If sdb is going to be the replacement disk then you may need some help with actually using it's backups to recover. Burn your data now.
Last edited by lucky9 on Sat Jun 14, 2014 12:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Clarification and Inhancement starting with EDIT:
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Dieselrider
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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#35 Post by Dieselrider » Sat Jun 14, 2014 1:17 pm

Is clonezilla on the live dvd? I think someone mentioned it was on the gparted live cd or some other?

Okay, now, since I have my critical data on the backup drive that is currently in the box, could I
1: take the backup drive out and replace it with the new drive (placing it in sdb1's position)?
Then 2: using clonezilla, clone the drive to the new one? (Would I have to partition first or will clonezilla do that?)
Then 3: Place the new drive in sda1's place and the backup drive back in sdb1's place and boot the system?

Would this work?

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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#36 Post by Earl57 » Sat Jun 14, 2014 1:25 pm

I recently had to do the same thing, but for different reasons. I used "dd" to copy all my partitions to a much larger drive. Afterwards I ran GParted to correct the size being reported for each partition.

I had some issues going from a IDE drive to a SATA drive, but luckily I had an old machine with IDE and SATA ports-the optical drive was on the IDE cable, so I plugged the IDE drive in there, and put the new SATA drive as the primary drive and booted to my trusty old M8 on a thumbdrive. Used "dd" from a live session. I had to fiddle with grub and mtab and fstab to get everything up and running.

I learned how to do all this from right here on the Forums!

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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#37 Post by lucky9 » Sat Jun 14, 2014 2:48 pm

Get Clonezilla (see below) and make an Image of both /root and /home from sda1 and 2 to sdb. Replace sda with the new disk.

I'd partition the new drive first (and place it in the sda position). Then using Clonezilla http://www.clonezilla.org/downloads.php (get the Stable one) boot it's LiveCD and use it's recovery setup to recover the two partitions to sda1 and 2.
You can then use GParted (from a booted LiveCD/DVD) to resize your partitions as per your wishes. I personally wouldn't recommend using a 400+ GB partition for /home. You should move your data to a separate partition. And while messing with this you need to backup your data files to Optical Disk. They are much safer then.
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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#38 Post by Dieselrider » Thu Jun 19, 2014 12:34 pm

Okay, probably did something wrong. Everything I was reading here regarding Clonezilla was to create a partition the same size as the one you want to clone. I took that to mean that I would need to clone sda1 to sdb1 and made each partition on my new drive similar to each partition on my old drive. Only it looks like it is cloning everything to my one partition on the new drive. Should I have just partitioned the new drive to one big partition and let clonezilla run?

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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#39 Post by lucky9 » Thu Jun 19, 2014 12:41 pm

NO. Partition the replacement drive the same as the drive that's going bad. (When cloning the partitions only.) Use this if the new drive is bigger than the old one.

If you are cloning the drive itself then choose the disk imaging choice if the drives are the same size. It will use dd to copy the sda disk to the sdb disk. It will include the partitioning, SWAP, etc. on the new disk.
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Re: Making an ISO image of my hard drive?

#40 Post by Dieselrider » Thu Jun 19, 2014 12:53 pm

Thought that is what I did but, I just placed the new drive in and tried to boot, All I have is the blinking cursor and nothing more. I will boot the live DVD and see if I can find anything wrong.

I did something wrong as it looks like it put everything in sdb5 which would have been my home partition. I will start over. Thanks

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