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 Post subject: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 10:05 
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Joined: January 12th, 2016, 3:46
Posts: 124
Location: India
Hi
I am looking for a professional cloning tool which will support lower Target size . This is needed sometimes when only part of Source (like first boot partition) is to be cloned on target .for example --

Source --500 GB -- C drive - 50GB.

Target --160 GB -- only 50GB from to be cloned on Target 160GB.

I tried Knopix / clonzilla & other flavours of linux but they dont support this feature. I have tried hddsuperclone as well. which succeeded in clone but somehow for unknown reasons both source / target geometry post cloning was different.
Once of the old software Farstone diskclone workstation v11 (Farstone website is down ) supports this specifically but being a windows based & not having Live USB version it is of little use.
What you peoples use in such cases.


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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 12:03 
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Joined: November 7th, 2015, 13:04
Posts: 125
Location: Austin metro area TX USA
I googled industrial strength cloning software and so far:
https://www.techradar.com/best/best-dis ... g-software
When I used military...URLs not even close.
Used commercial...; I got this:
https://www.thetechlounge.com/best-cloning-software/

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 12:31 
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Joined: December 8th, 2010, 11:37
Posts: 660
Location: Ottawa, Canada
Macrium Reflect is the best I've found but it's Windows-based and I get the impression that makes it unacceptable to you? Also, if you plan on using it to provide services to customers, you need the Tech license, which is $600/yr. I haven't found anything that can be used to provide services to customers and doesn't require a prohibitively expensive Tech license. :(

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 12:59 
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Joined: November 7th, 2015, 13:04
Posts: 125
Location: Austin metro area TX USA
RolandJS wrote:
I googled industrial strength cloning software and so far:
https://www.techradar.com/best/best-dis ... g-software
When I used military...URLs not even close.
Used commercial...; I got this:
https://www.thetechlounge.com/best-cloning-software/


Possibly, a better route, would be to also ask:
https://www.data-medics.com/forum/
https://www.recoveryforce.com/forums/
You will find like minds in those two places, very likely many of whom have successfully done what you want to do. I'm just a DR beginner, rather than hazard a guess, I point to other places to consult. I have NO connections with any of the above-mentioned folks! I simply believe in adding sources in addition to mentioning this excellent source right here - HDDGURU.

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 15:01 
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Joined: February 9th, 2009, 16:13
Posts: 2257
Location: Ontario, Canada
R-Studio has a built-in Smart Partition copy, which will allow down-sizing.

But, you are saying that you want to clone the drive. Others might read it differently, but I read that as a full sector-by-sector copy of one drive to another. I'm not sure how one would even expect 1,000,000 sectors to fit on a drive with only 750,000 sectors, without some data being lost.

But, if you are just looking for a data transfer of a drive that is nowhere close to being full, R-Studio should do the job, but so should most other file system copy programs like Acronis, Ghost and the likes.

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 18:05 
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Joined: October 22nd, 2018, 11:46
Posts: 40
Location: Virginia
lcoughey wrote:
Others might read it differently, but I read that as a full sector-by-sector copy of one drive to another. I'm not sure how one would even expect 1,000,000 sectors to fit on a drive with only 750,000 sectors, without some data being lost.

I think he's talking about only cloning a smaller partition from the source to destination, where it actually could fit (?).


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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 4th, 2019, 19:49 
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Joined: January 29th, 2012, 1:43
Posts: 681
Location: United States
If I understand what you are trying to do, then it is not a very common situation. Usually something like the “C:” partition goes to the end of the drive, and you would have to resize it to clone it to a smaller drive. But if you really want to do something like this (without resizing the partition, which would almost certainly require paid software), then read on.

The very first thing you must understand is that for Windows, if you expect the clone to be bootable, the “C:” main Windows partition MUST start at the same sector on the destination as the source. There are ways around that, but it involves editing the registry using something like Hiren’s Boot CD, and it is a big pain.

The best way to clone just a partition to another drive (without resizing) is to first format the destination, and then create a new partition the exact same size as the source partition. You could use GParted. Then use ddrescue to clone the partition from the source to the destination, such as sda1 to sdb1. You can use hddsuperclone, but you need to choose generic image mode for the source, and then navigate to /dev and choose the partition (such as sda1, which would be the same as /dev/sda1 in ddrescue). The same goes for the destination, choose image file and navigate to /dev.

I think the reason for the disk geometry issue when you did use hddsuperclone is that when cloning the partition table (sector 0), it was trying to make the smaller destination drive appear bigger than it could be.

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 5th, 2019, 2:01 
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Joined: January 12th, 2016, 3:46
Posts: 124
Location: India
Thank you LarrySabo ,jidis,lcoughey ,RolandJS and maximus for your valuable inputs and help.

This unusual requirement comes while cloning older automation equipment disks.
often these devices (cnc /plc ,industrial pc's) use very odd hard disks with there proprietory softwares with os like dos ,unix etc.
Sometimes this work has to e performed at client site and I cant take hardware cloner which supports ignores size /file system and makes sector by sector clone.
I think do sector by sector cloning within windows as windows tries to mount file system which may overwrite or try to change file system including NTFS version. Sector by sector cloning might be possible only from DOS or linux.Macrium and acronis are smart backup tools which copy only occupied sectors. Sothese windows based tools including R-studio / Winhex etc might not be suitable in this case.
I often calculate MD5 / SHA1 of both source /target to ensure that both are digitally identical and my cloning is flawless.
maximus is it possible to make automatic case generation with default path on live usb pen drive with unique case no taking date time combination ? Also default path to automatically save log files must be in pen drive itself. Due to this even if cloning is interrupted or accidentally restarted , still log will be available.
I will continue my research and update finding here.


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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 5th, 2019, 9:26 
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Joined: February 9th, 2009, 16:13
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Location: Ontario, Canada
I just did a case where the 40GB IDE drive from a CNC machine, was actually a 2GB FAT16 partition with DOS on it. So, after getting a full sector-by-sector clone of the entire 40GB drive, I set the HPA of my clone to a 2GB drive, made a new 2GB RAW image backup file for the client to store. I then used a Startech duplicator to copy the system partition and data only to "new" IDE drives, with each copy only taking about 15 seconds.

As for onsite cloning hardware, if you can't have a RapidSpar for portability and logging, you could invest in a Startech SATDUP11 (https://www.startech.com/HDD/Duplicator ... n~SATDUP11).

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 5th, 2019, 10:46 
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Joined: November 7th, 2015, 13:04
Posts: 125
Location: Austin metro area TX USA
"...within windows...[might change geometry]..."
Guys, Gals, correct me if I am wrong, however, I thought during a clone operation, it did not matter which OS the cloning utility was "under" or from the OS the cloning utility "brought with it". I'm learning new things today!

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 5th, 2019, 19:29 
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Joined: January 29th, 2012, 1:43
Posts: 681
Location: United States
Quote:
maximus is it possible to make automatic case generation with default path on live usb pen drive with unique case no taking date time combination ? Also default path to automatically save log files must be in pen drive itself. Due to this even if cloning is interrupted or accidentally restarted , still log will be available.

I am not sure what you are asking with the pen drive, but I think you are talking about needing a persistent linux live usb. If you are not familiar with that, then research it, because it is possible and not hard to do. If you already know and are using a persistent live usb, then I can’t help much further on that subject.

I would also like to say that your questions and explanations make me wonder if you know exactly what you are trying to do. Maybe that is just something in translation, but I feel that I don’t fully understand what you are specifically asking overall.

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 5th, 2019, 22:22 
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Joined: January 12th, 2016, 3:46
Posts: 124
Location: India
Hi RolandJS
I am against cloning using windows for many reasons (attached is comparison) .
I think true forensic cloning is not possible in windows as windows tries to modify disk content ( accessed date time stamp changes , windows creates recycle bin /system volume information folders , at a times different NTFS versions may cause corruption.
This type of cloning might now be needed in day to day work but for Data recovery it is a must --
1) In case of EFS encryption we must clone entire disk including unallocated space as EFS keys needs to be extracted.
2) In case of full disk encryption like Bitlocker entire disk must be cloned for decryption.

maximus you haven't understood my query --
While using a live USB version , if program gives option to create automatic case ID on bootable pen drive that will make cloning faster with automatic log preservation. Currently for each case we have to create new project ,if it is created automatically on this LIVE usb media then risk in accidental writting on source /target will get removed. Also one dont be needed to copy this log manually after completion of work.
Often I create log on Desktop but after restart it is lost.


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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 6th, 2019, 10:17 
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Joined: August 18th, 2010, 17:35
Posts: 3351
Location: Massachusetts, USA
For cloning with partition modifications/restrictions, I recommend Paragon.
https://www.paragon-software.com/home/drive-copy/

If you want to perform forensic clones/images, then connect devices to your system in read-only mode, irrespective of host OS. You can use write blockers or tools like PC3000.

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 6th, 2019, 18:50 
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Joined: January 29th, 2012, 1:43
Posts: 681
Location: United States
Quote:
maximus you haven't understood my query --
While using a live USB version , if program gives option to create automatic case ID on bootable pen drive that will make cloning faster with automatic log preservation. Currently for each case we have to create new project ,if it is created automatically on this LIVE usb media then risk in accidental writting on source /target will get removed. Also one dont be needed to copy this log manually after completion of work.
Often I create log on Desktop but after restart it is lost.

If you are saying that when you reboot the live USB that you have lost the log file, then I do understand. That is why I told you to research creating a PERSISTENT Linux live usb. It will save changes. You can actually install software on it and it will be there next boot. Just make sure to make the area that saves the changes large enough when you create it. I belive something like Universal USB Installer can make this easy, but I am sure there are other programs and ways to do it.
https://www.pendrivelinux.com/universal ... -as-1-2-3/

As for any automation with hddsuperclone, sorry, but the user is responsible for where to save things, and for choosing the correct source and destination. Making sure the live usb does not automount devices is a good start to not writing to the wrong place, but won't prevent it. If you need that kind of insurance, you would need to use a dedicated hardware imager.

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 9th, 2019, 13:32 
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Joined: November 7th, 2015, 13:04
Posts: 125
Location: Austin metro area TX USA
"...The very first thing you must understand is that for Windows, if you expect the clone to be bootable, the “C:” main Windows partition MUST start at the same sector on the destination as the source..." I learned something today; I did not know this. Restoring full images appeared to "not care" where the partitions started, I did not know clones "do care".

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 Post subject: Re: DISK CLONING tool with different sizes
PostPosted: December 9th, 2019, 21:48 
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Joined: January 12th, 2016, 3:46
Posts: 124
Location: India
maximus wrote:
Quote:
maximus you haven't understood my query --
While using a live USB version , if program gives option to create automatic case ID on bootable pen drive that will make cloning faster with automatic log preservation. Currently for each case we have to create new project ,if it is created automatically on this LIVE usb media then risk in accidental writting on source /target will get removed. Also one dont be needed to copy this log manually after completion of work.
Often I create log on Desktop but after restart it is lost.

If you are saying that when you reboot the live USB that you have lost the log file, then I do understand. That is why I told you to research creating a PERSISTENT Linux live usb. It will save changes. You can actually install software on it and it will be there next boot. Just make sure to make the area that saves the changes large enough when you create it. I belive something like Universal USB Installer can make this easy, but I am sure there are other programs and ways to do it.
https://www.pendrivelinux.com/universal ... -as-1-2-3/

As for any automation with hddsuperclone, sorry, but the user is responsible for where to save things, and for choosing the correct source and destination. Making sure the live usb does not automount devices is a good start to not writing to the wrong place, but won't prevent it. If you need that kind of insurance, you would need to use a dedicated hardware imager.



hi Thanks maximus
I was not even aware of PERSISTENT Live USB , I will create HDDSUPERCLONE on 64GB pen drive which will be having sufficient size for all write operations.
I have several cases which have come up for cloning -- a failing SANDISK pen drive which is showing data but upon copying giving errors , various IDE drives.


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