Question Anyone presently using EaseUS for cloning Windows?

AntiHypocrite

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We have a project involving old utilities going all the way back to Win XP and Win 7. Before starting the project, I'd like to clone the Win 11 OS on the SSD in our old PC laptop to an archive HDD ... and, come to think of it, I'd really like to clone any of the Windows operating systems that we'll be employing for the upcoming job.

EaseUS claims that their utility will clone all Windows operating systems going back to Win XP, so it reads like the ideal cloning application for us. My question is if anyone reading this is using this software and, if so, if it makes reliable bootable cloned images?

We presently use Carbon Copy Cloner (CCC) to clone the system drives in our old MacBook Pros. It really works great, but, unfortunately, it's only available for macOS. If anyone clones both Mac and Windows system drives, it would be great to hear from you about any differences in the two processes.

Thank you kindly for your time.
 

mxnerd

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AntiHypocrite

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I use old free EaseUs Disk copy 2.3 iso many years back. Not anymore. I just reinstall the OS now.

See if you still can find a copy.

CloneZilla is free and good for all OSes. It should have mass copy/deployment feature but I never use it.

description
Thank you for posting. Do you recall if either EaseUS Disk Copy or CloneZilla allowed one to clone a bootable clone image to an external USB drive (like our archive HDD)? Once again, I'd like to be able to boot from the external USB drive.
 

mxnerd

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I always copy internal drive to internal drive. Windows is not able to boot natively even if you clone existing Windows installation onto a USB drive.

To make Windows bootable from USB drive, you have to use Windows to go feature that MS has already abandoned.

Rufus still support it. But either way you have to install Windows from scratch.

I also mentioned that don't use a cheap flash drive for Windows to go in another thread just recently because it will be extremely slow (I used Kingston Data Traveler 64GB) (over 10 minutes on my Intel 4th gen CPU) Forgot which thread though. Use SSD/NVME in a mobile enclosure instead.

OK. Found it. https://forums.anandtech.com/threads/crystaldiskmark-related-questions.2614327/post-41056339

==

Well, there are alternatives to Rufus. Never tried them.

 
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AntiHypocrite

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I always copy internal drive to internal drive. Windows is not able to boot natively even if you clone existing Windows installation onto a USB drive.

To make Windows bootable from USB drive, you have to use Windows to go feature that MS has already abandoned.

Rufus still support it. But either way you have to install Windows from scratch.

I also mentioned that don't use a cheap flash drive for Windows to go in another thread just recently because it will be extremely slow (I used Kingston Data Traveler 64GB) (over 10 minutes on my Intel 4th gen CPU) Forgot which thread though. Use SSD/NVME in a mobile enclosure instead.

OK. Found it. https://forums.anandtech.com/threads/crystaldiskmark-related-questions.2614327/post-41056339
Referencing the bolded bit of the quote (above), is there a way to move an entire image from one internal drive to another internal drive in Win 11?

If there is, perhaps I could find a cable that will allow me to connect one of our SATA HDDs to the SATA bus inside of our Dell M4700 PC laptop?

Normally, I'd simply open up the laptop and install a second drive, but our archive HDDs are the 3.5" variety, which makes this impossible for us.
 

mxnerd

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Don't see why you can't copy the whole disk if it's Windows 11.

Disk cloning software also always allow you to resize the partition size accordingly.
 
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mxnerd

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Found the old copy of EaseUS Disk Copy 2.3.1, run the exe file to create iso or burn to USB flash drive.


But it's too old and seems does not support UEFI firmware boot. You have to use BIOS boot method.

Shouldn't be a problem for old machines.
 
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AntiHypocrite

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Thanks MX Nerd ~

As it's a bit older, do you think that EaseUS Disk Copy 2.3.1 will work in the Windows 11 OS environment?
 

billbo1970

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I actually just used their latest software this morning. I connected a new SSD to my laptop via USB->SATA cable. I paid for the non-recurring 1 Month subscription, otherwise you can't clone, only see if it will work. Cloned a 500GB SSD to a new 500GB SSD in 45 minutes. Worked like a charm. Swapped the drives, and the laptop booted right up off the new drive like nothing had ever changed. Keeping the old one as a functional clone backup, so in the event of catastrophic failure all I have to do is swap the drives then restore the latest backup job.
 
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mxnerd

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Win11 = Win10 with UI changes. No difference.

Don't know why you can't try yourself if it's a project.
 

AntiHypocrite

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Win11 = Win10 with UI changes. No difference.

Don't know why you can't try yourself if it's a project.
I've been away from all things Windows for over a dozen years, so please go easy on me. I do remember some not so pleasant things from the old days, however, so I'm trying to inch my way back into the Windows way of doing things...
 
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mxnerd

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No need to stick with old Windows tools if you have doubt.

Just googled and found that Rescuezilla is another open source disk utility that that's up-to-date which adds GUI to Clonezilla and I believe that it fits your bill.


There are many tutorials on YT nowadays no matter what you need to learn/use.

You can always search alternative tools using known product name + alternatives
 
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mikeymikec

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I've used EaseUS (the free one) and Samsung Data Migration on many occasions. Sometimes the former doesn't work, sometimes the latter doesn't work. I've never had both fail for a given drive.
 

AntiHypocrite

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Okay, so I downloaded Macrium Reflect Free 8 (MRF8) to one of our Macs, copied it to a USB thumb drive and pasted it into the Dell M4700 PC laptop that I'll be working with. From there, I installed MRF8, hooked up our USB HDD archive dock to the M4700 and cloned the internal SSD to the target HDD.

After I exited MRF8, I restarted the M4700 and pressed the F12 key to access the M4700's BIOS Boot Options menu. Next, I used the arrow keys to find the actual Western Digital part number of the external HDD - which I was pleasantly surprised to see - and pressed ENTER. The M4700 booted quite a bit more slowly than normal, which indicates that it did indeed boot from the external HDD (as intended) ... but, before I erase the M4700's internal system drive to load Win XP (for our legacy project), I want to be very sure that the cloned image on the external HDD is in fact bootable.

Is there a way in Win 11 to temporarily disable the internal system SSD and boot directly from the external HDD? If not, can I simply physically disconnect the internal SSD and boot from the cloned image on the external HDD?

I'd also be interested in knowing if there's a way in Win 11 to click on a drive letter and identify the actual drive model that said drive letter is assigned to. Does anyone know how to do this?

Thanks for the help - it looks like I'm almost there. 👍
 

mxnerd

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You should change boot order from the BIOS boot menu, I also press F12 on my old DELL PC to choose which drive to boot, not disabling internal drive from Windows.

I tried Win11 many times but decided to stay with Win10.

To make sure it's not booting from internal drive, just disconnect the drive.

My experience is that you can't boot from USB if you don't use Rufus or MS's Enterprise / Education edition's Windows to Go feature. Just clone a drive to another drive and put it in a USB enclosure doesn't make it bootable from USB. I never used Macrium Reflect Free 8 though.

To show HDD/SDD models, in Windows Disk Management, right click on left most side of the disk (showing disk 0 to disk n) , then choose properties.

If you can boot from external drive without any changes, congratulations!
 
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AntiHypocrite

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Thanks for the help - it looks like I'm almost there.
Well, cancel that. After I used the Win 11 shut down command: I never saw video again.

At this point, I've run the Dell screen/display test [Power Button + D]. The machine passes that test, which means that the display panel didn't suddenly fail. This is very good news, but, at this point, I'm doing research on why I can't access BIOS. Needless to say, a machine with zero video is just a metal box, right?

By the way, the Dell M4700 in question isn't totally dead. The power indicator and the volume controls light up ... and the both disc indicator LEDs (on the side of the machine and on top of the machine) are blinking. The fan is also slowly turning on and off, so there are signs of live ... but, once again, zero video.
 

AntiHypocrite

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Long story short, the M4700 has an intermittent hardware issue - probably GPU related - that is getting worse and worse. At this point, I've put the machine to the side ( temporarily ) and have employed a newer Dell Inspiron 16 7630 with a Win XP VM experiment in mind.

As described in Post 15, I downloaded and used Macrium Reflect Free 8 to clone the Win 11 image that the [now broken] Dell M4700 came with. As I never saw anything to indicate otherwise, I assume that the M4700's cloned Win 11 image is safely stored away on our external USB HDD dock.

In an attempt to verify the same cloned Win 11 image, I connected the external USB HDD dock to the USB port on the newer Dell 7630 laptop. Unfortunately, the BIOS onboard the Dell 7630 isn't recognizing the cloned image as a boot drive, so the question is why?

By the way, when the system drive in the Dell M4700 (Win 11) was originally cloned, I was very careful to ensure that both drives involved in the cloning process - the 256GB SSD in the M4700 and the HDD plugged into the external USB dock - use the GUID table and are formatted for NTFS. The Dell 7630 also has the Win 11 OS, a GUID table and is formatted for NTFS, so everything matches in that regard. The only real difference that I can think of is that the system SSD in the Dell 7630 is the NVMe variety.
 

mxnerd

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You have been told multiple times that you can't just clone an existing Windows disk to a external usb HDD/SSD and expect it to boot from USB.

Seeing a device appears in a boot menu entry doesn't mean it's really bootable.

You have to use free Rufus tool to create a new installation on a USB SSD/HDD or use paid software to convert existing installation.

You can see why no other people to chip in. Or ask moderator to move the question to Windows / OS subforums. My last post.
 
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AntiHypocrite

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Well, as you may recall, the thread started out as cloning thread and the present issue is a cloning issue. I assumed that cloning was a "storage" issue, and this is a storage forum board. I'm not sure why a Macrium Reflect discussion belongs on a Windows board? In my many years on web forums, I've learned that, often times, there simply isn't the "perfect" board to post issues to...and I'll leave it at that. Sorry to bother you.

That said, I'll inform the rest of the board that I have been told, even by folks in the PC business, that one can boot directly from a cloned disk image residing on an external USB drive. This is the reason that I employed Macrium Reflect, and my many years of being able to do this via Mac OSX and macOS have me convinced that the same thing can be done with a PC. Otherwise, why would the process be called "cloning"?

Thank you kindly for your time.
 

mxnerd

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Mac OS comes from BSD, which is Linux like. Completely different from Windows. Linux has a live mode that you can run from a CDROM/USB. Windows can also run in a live mode that's called Windows PE. But it's complete different from a Windows installation.

https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/w...ning/windows-to-go-frequently-asked-questions. Ask those who said it can be done how did they really did it. Either Win10 or Win11.

You can use whatever disk copy/cloning software to clone disk with existing installaion, but no disk copy/cloning software will make it automatically bootable from USB. Because it requires extra files and registry changes/modification.

This is not a storage issue, it's an OS issue.

To make Windows bootable from USB, you have to use Windows to Go feature option to install Windows onto a SSD/HDD disk that's placed in a mobile USB enclosure.

Windows To Go installation then can be converted to standard way to boot in a later time. But not the other way around.

I use existing Windows installation on SSD and added PortableOperatingSystem=1 DWORD key value pair and tried to boot from USB enclosure and it didn't work, Windows logo showed up a few seconds but failed to boot. Tried twice and it failed twice. Put the SSD back to machine and connect SATA cable and power cable and Windows had to repair the disk before being able to boot again.

Some related articles.


==

Registry mod didn't work for me. But probably will work for you. I don't know. Test yourself. Truly my last post.
 
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