Hard Drive Clone Failed - Need Directions Out of Hell.
by OldVeryOld - 5/5/12 6:40 AM
I installed XP years ago, and it asked if I wanted to keep Windows 98SE. I did (and do). XP created a dual boot system. I didn't really expect that, but it worked very well. I eventually ran out of hard drive space. My system cache is too small to work. I decided to buy a larger hard drive. I thought any well criticized cloning software would work well. I installed the larger hard drive as a slave in my system. I got windows to recognize it, and even formatted it in FAT32 to avoid any conflicts using a "CutTheCrap" program to overcome the built-in MSFT format routine's inability to format more than 32GB partitions in FAT32. Last night I started backing up my C, D, and E drive partitions to the H partition of the new disk, thinking I'd image the partitions of my original disk, then restore them to the corresponding partitions (F,G,H) of the larger drive. I even downloaded EASEUS' partition management software to enable me to enlarge the respective partitions on the new drive once all the old partitions were suitably imaged and restored to the new drive. WHY DIDN'T I JUST CLONE FROM ONE DRIVE TO THE OTHER? BECAUSE MACRIUM REFLECT PUKED WHEN I ASKED IT TO DO PRECISELY THAT, FORCING ME TO RESORT TO THE IMAGE AND RESTORE APPROACH TO SAVE MYSELF 12 MORE HOURS DOWNLOADING SOMEBODY ELSE'S SOFTWARE.
Okay, with that rant off my chest...
Apparently MSFT has built some kind of poison pill into its XP OS. AFTer I'd loaded the imaged D: partition to G:, then expanded the F and G partitions to use more of the new hard drive's space with EASEUS' partition software, EASEUS would not shut down. I had to force it to do that. Thinking something had become unhinged in my cache, I decided to shut down XP and restart the computer to try to restore stability. Instead, after the dual boot select screen, I was informated that HAL.dll, apparently used by XP, was corrupted or lost and needed to be reloaded from the installation CD. (The poison pill from MSFT.)
I thought that perhaps I should load the EASEUS cloning software, even it it will take 12 hours, and simply try to use this other tool to clone one internal hard drive (master) to the larger hard drive (slave), then install the slave as the sole master, and, if it will boot, use EASEUS partition software to increase the size of each partition on the new hard drive to achieve my original goal of having more space on each drive, so that the disk cache will function the way that its supposed to, without slowing everything down to a tortoise' pace.
You are now up-to-date relative to where I am now.
Of course, you should recall, that I don't do this sort of thing very often. Perhaps, once per decade, and never before with a dual boot system. There were a number of haunting concerns that I anticipated this little experiment would clear up even before this dll catastrophe, including:
1. Can I directly image a master hard drive to a slave hard drive internal to the computer?
2. Will my slave hard drive partitions, named F,G,H when it is a slave, revert to C,D,E when I reboot the cloned system as the sole master on the computer?
3. Does MSFT have any other poison pills built into XP to make certain that I can't alter the size of hard drive partitions without making Bill Gates wonder if he's gotten enough money from my purchase of his OS and take it upon himself via his surrogates to shut down my system and kill my productivity when I try to upgarde my hard drive to insure he doesn't face any possibility of someone cloning to a larger hard drive and needing to increase the size of partitions (without wasting time re-installing an OS...all day).
NOW I NEED TO RECOVER.
1. I'm too broke to throw ANY money at the solution. (Bill Gates and his industrialist/tech friends have acquired all the money these days. I can't seem to locate any.)
2. My computer will not boot up with the larger hard drive installed as a slave for cloning and the XP directory on both the new and the old hard drives. (The "poison pill" from Microsoft?)
Not a Problem:
1. Although incensed by what happened, and wondering if someone had sent me a viral version of a partition modification program, I was able to get the original hard drive to boot as normal once I disconnected the slave. (This eliminated my concern that someone was playing around with the source drive when imaging to or partitioning a second drive.)
Vague Solution Concept That Occurred After the Outrage:
1. Can I simply do a sys a:, create a bootable floppy, install the FAT32 formatting software for partitions larger than 32 GB, reset the slave to sole master, boot from the floppy, and reformat all the partitions on the slave to erase all the data that was transferred, so that I won't have any residual issue with a cloned verson of XP on the same computer as the original version of XP?
2. Can I then use EASEUS cloning software to clone disk 0 to disk 1 (the new, larger hard drive) after I've reinstalled it as a slave and rebooted from the original hard drive?
3. Can I then re-set the new hard drive to master, after the clone, disconnect the old hard drive, and simply boot to the larger drive?
4. Can I then use partitioning software from EASEUS to expand the size of each of the partitions, or won't Bill Gates let me select the size of my own hard drive partitions without forcing a re-installation of his software via the poison pill concept and the effects of changing system characteristics?
5. Any other details I should know about?
Thanks to any and all who can prevent another "disaster" with a path forward to a solution to my problem upgrading my hard drive on a dual boot system.