We’ve all had that moment in time when we realized we were out of space and needed a bigger drive. I don’ think this has ever been more true than the past 2-3 years as SSD performance has caused many of us to switch to smaller high performance drives. With the price of storage rapidly decreasing and larger SSDs becoming more affordable it’s become rather attractive to move to a larger driver, but not many of us want to go through the pain of reinstalling our OS from scratch. Older tools like Ghost and commercial solutions can have annoying licensing terms, funky quirks, or just aren’t really an accessible option. I’ve personally found great success in using clonezilla to clone hard drives and figured I would create a quick tutorial to illustrate just how easy it is to clone a driver with clonezilla.
Step 1: Gather The Prerequisites
To successfully clone your drive with Clonezilla you will need the following:
- The clonezilla ISO from http://clonezilla.org/downloads/download.php?branch=stable
- choose the appropriate architecture (this will be AMD64 for most of you) and ISO as the file type
- A USB drive 4GB should be sufficient
- Pendrive Linux Universal Installer from http://pendrivelinux.com
- A USB to SATA converter (something along these lines: http://www.amazon.com/Patuoxun-Converter-Adapter-Cable-Drive/dp/B008ASF5MC/ref=sr_1_4?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1430442966&sr=1-4&keywords=usb+to+sata)
- Some newer devices use mSATA drives not regular SATA drives. Please double check this so that you can buy the appropriate drive and drive adapter for your device.
A larger hard drive than what is currently in your machine
Step 2: Create a Bootable USB
- Insert your USB stick you will choose to use for clonezilla (please be aware that installing this will format the USB drive and will clear any information currently on it.
- Open the Universal USB Installer you downloaded from pendrivelinux.com
- Choose clonzilla in step one of the USB creator, browse to the ISO you downloaded for step 2, and select your flash drive for step 3, then press create
Once the live USB creation process has completed, you can unplug the USB drive from your computer and plug it into the machine you are going to be cloning.
Step 3: Boot Your PC From USB
Once the USB is plugged into the machine we will be cloning, you will want to also plug in your USB to SATA converter with your new hard drive attached. After this you can power on the machine (if the computer is currently running shut it down). Upon boot choose the boot menu, this will vary by manufacturer but is typically F11 or F12 on most devices. If this fails you can alternatively try ESC or DEL to boot into the BIOS and change the boot order to start from USB. If your machine boots properly from the live USB, you should see the following screen, if so, proceed to the next step.
Step 4: Proceed Through Clonezilla Menus & Start Clone
- From the menu screen shown above, choose the Clonezilla Live options (this should be the first option).
- After a black and white window of scrolling text goes by, you will be placed on a blue screen with a language selection box, choose your language
- Next you will be prompted about keymap, choose the default option to not touch keymap
- On the next screen choose start clonezilla
- Choose device to device for cloning options
- Choose beginner mode
- Choose disk to local disk in the next option
- Choose your old hard drive as the source (this will typically be the smaller drive that’s larger than the flash drive you’re using)
- Choose the destination (this should be the largest drive in the list)
- Choose the skip checking/repairing option
- Press Enter
- When the warning message pops up, make sure it shows the larger drive you’re cloning to, press y followed by enter
- When you receive the second warning prompt press y and hit enter again
- Next you’ll be asked if you want to clone the bootloader, press y and hit enter
- At this point partclone will run a few assessments and then begin cloning your drive. This will take some time depending on the speed of the drives and whether your using USB 2.0 or 3.0 with your USB to SATA adapter.
- Once the drive cloning process is complete a few checks will be run and you will see the screen below. Press enter
- Choose Poweroff and wait for your machine to turn off
Step 5: Remove The Old Drive, Install the New Drive
- Now that drive cloning has completed, you can safely remove the Clonezilla USB and the USB to SATA converter
- Remove your old hard drive and replace it with the newly cloned drive
- Power on and proceed to the next step
Step 6: Expand the Partition in Windows
Once your machine is powered on there is one final step we must take, which is to expand the partition. This will be done through the built in disk management tool in windows.
- Press the windows key and R to bring up the run box. Type diskmgmt.msc into the run box and press enter.
- Alternatively you can type this into the search box on Windows 7 or on the start screen search in Windows 8/8.1
- You should see your C drive followed by unallocated space
- Right click the C drive (portion in blue above) and choose extend volume, then click through the wizard with the defaults. Now you should see the C drive has been extended
- With that ladies and gents we are done!
Thank you for checking out this blog post, I will likely create a video to demonstrate this process in the near future. In the meantime please feel free to leave any questions or comments.