Cannot successfully clone Windows 8 system and boot partitions.

About a month after I installed windows 8 32 bit on my desktop computer containing a 1TB SATA HD laid out as follows: 
Partition 1: active 350MB system - Partition 2: 36GB boot -- Partition 3: NTFS for data occupying the remaining space.

Recently the bios started to issue SMART warnings that the drive was likely to fail any time. 
I have a 700GB SATA drive in good condition that I could use instead.  
I am hoping to avoid re-installing Win8 from the optical media because I have spent very many hours customising my current installation of Win 8 to work the way I'd like it to.  So the obvious solution is to to clone the existing system and boot partitions to my new drive.

I did so, using drive tools from a boot CD, which I've previously used successfully to clone XP and Windows 7 partitions.  

However, it appears that the Win8 boot process initiated from the small system (active) partition looks for a particular disk ID in order to access the boot partition, and since this is not cloned with the partition image, boot fails with the following code: 
0xc000000e - "a required device is not connected or can't be accesssed"

This problem is not repairable from the original Windows install DVD as I would have expected in the case of Windows XP or Windows 7.

It would appear that all I need to do (before my ailing disk finally dies) is to clone the unique ID from the original boot partition to the new boot partition, but this is proving impossible because there are at least two co-existent types of UUID, (a long one, and a VERY long one) and the only apps that I can find for cloning UUIDs seem to clone the wrong one.

My diagnosis of the problem may be completely wrong, but someone must know all about this, and I need to find out how to make a clone of the boot partition that the cloned system process will recognise, which must be possible.

I also tried to create and restore an image of the boot partition, but when I try to recover it to the new disk, the MS recovery complains that I'm presenting it with the wrong destination media.  Looks like the same problem all over again.

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Why not try a different clone program that is rated for win8?

 

EaseUS Todo free backup I know clones win8 disk to disk here.

 

~
Microsoft Bob came back after a 20 year makeover, and with a new name. Cortana!

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gob0nkers: Many thanks for your suggestion.  I tried EaseUS disk Cloner, which I presume will be effecively the same as Todo without the intermediate step of making and restoring an image, and I had even less success with it than other partition copy apps I've tried.  I presume there's no effective difference between the two in that both create a sector-by-sector image.

I booted the Easeus Disk and Partition Cloner CD, and cloned the system and boot partition according to their instructions, but when I tried to boot from the cloned drive, I just got a flashing cursor -- not even an error message. I tried all the usual stuff with the Win8 install DVD, like auto repair and different options with BOOTREC, but none of it made any difference. At least when I used Easeus Partition Manager, I was able to get as far as the dreaded message described in my first post.

I'm fairly sure I could have succeeded with Clonezilla, but only if I could have cloned the entire disk, which is not possible in this case because the target is smaller than the source, and when I tried just Clonezillaring the partitions without cloning the entire partition table (which Clonezilla won't permit if the target is smaller than the source),  I just got the same error message.  

Same with GParted or any of the other utilities I've tried.

So still stuck.  Surely it's gotta be all about some disk ID that Win 8 boot manager can't find, and that I can't clone....?

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i use macrium reflect works well in windows 8 and free it will allow you to copy all partitons including the 350mb boot partiton when running it it will ask you to select a disk to clone to and u can drag each partion to the new drive
   when cloning the boot partition drag it to the destination and then goto properties and change it to active no letter then drag the main partition over and leave the setting click next it will then clon the orginal drive exactly before you start the clone make sure all drives are visible in my computer so that the clone will be able to clone correctly also u may find to clone the drive on another system as some clone programs cannot access all file because the system is using them

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@TIGER120111: thanks for the suggestion.  I'm amazed I'd never heard of Reflect when I saw what a good name they have, and I've downloaded it.  However, by this time I'd given up and re-installed, (v. quick) and then set it up so I could actually work (very tedious -- those smartphone tiles make no sense on two side-by-side Dell 30" monsters).  However, I'll certainly use Reflect for image backup etc.

Then I think I came across what I was looking for all along:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/markrussinovich/archive/2011/11/08/3463572.aspx

This guy looks really competent and seems to have the whole problem nailed.  I found the blog too late to save my bacon this time, but next time I have a Win8 migration problem, his insight should provide SALVATION for me or anyone else who runs up against the same issue.


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  " EaseUS Todo free backup I know clones win8 disk to disk here."

 

I tried to download from 3 sites--Norton deleted them  virus

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I have experienced the same problem as set out by Adam Skeaping who started this thread.  As he poited out, the guy who knows everything about this is Mark Russinovich, who is my go-to guru and the Font of All Knowledge in the World of Windows.  Not only does he write extremely well, he's even published some very readable technology-related fiction.  If I have any Windows problem I just google it plus his name.

Now the plug for my Windows hero is out of the way....

 

@ Henry:

1) if you just want to clone any Windows system, including 8.1, IMHO, Macrium Reflect has been for several years way ahead of the field.  Moreover, it's free, unless you want to do extra-clever stuff like cloning to a destination partition smaller than your source partition.  And the full paid versions are no more expensive than the competition. 

2) If you're running Win 7 - 8 - 8.1, why do you bother with Norton?  IMHO, the free built-in Windows Defender or Security Essentials are now probably more effective than Norton, McAfee, AVG, Avast, and all the rest of that bunch.  The only exception I would make is the venerable Malwarebytes, which perfectly complements the excellent built-in MS anti-malware offerings.  The basic version is free, and still very effective if you're prepared to run it regularly, and the fully paid version takes real-time security to a very high level without gobbling up rescources in the process.

Just my 2-cents....

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05/28/2015 Just completed an overnight CLONE of my laptop's Win 8.1 Pro C: boot drive HDD using the most current version Macrium Reflect (.7299). The input HDD in the laptop is a 1TB and the output is a 1TB in a USB enclosure. The clone's end of job message stated "Clone Completed in 4:47:30." However I took note of the the the partition sizes. There is a ~10 GB discrepancy; the input disk states: 319.17 GB, while the output disk states: 309.52 GB. Researched why... but no reasonable information available. As additional observations, in Computer Management > Storage > Disk Management, the

INPUT: C: Volume shows a Layout of Simple, a Type of Basic, a File System of NTFS, a Status of Healthy (Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, Primary Partition), a Capacity 931.41 GB, Free Space 612.10 GB, % Free 66%

===

OTPUT: G: Volume shows a Layout of Simple, a Type of Basic, a File System of NTFS, a Status of Healthy (Primary Partition), a Capacity 931.41 GB, Free Space 621.88 GB, % Free 67%

===

1. Does anyone know why this ~10 GB discrepancy occurred?

2. Why doesn't the clone show {Boot, Page File, Crash Dump as well?

3, Perhaps the Crash Dump

    a. is approx 10 GB

    b. does not get copied to the clone, which does not make sense in a clone operation.

4. Not sure if the the problem is with Macrium Reflect or something I'm missing.

Your Input is Appreciated,

Thanks Much.

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@ Robert Beale:

Can't help much, but FWIW, I think perhaps the word 'clone' is somewhat loosely used by Macrium.  
For a start, the disk signature is changed, which is necessary to avoid all sorts of potential problems, and so I guess that makes it immediately not a clone.  
Macrium seem to take it for granted that you'll want them to use a spot of intelligence in selecting what they leave out -- and surely it makes a load of sense not to bother with the page file and crash dump.  So I'd be inclined to be sanguine and accept that they have your best interests at heart....

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It's a duplicate disk signature issue.

See the solution below written by someone that knows. :-)

https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/markrussinovich/2011/11/06/fixing-disk-signature-collisions/

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I discovered the amazing Mr Russinovich a few days after posting this, and I should have updated my post so as not to waste anyone else's time answering it.  But you've done that for me now, so many thanks. 

I also tried many disk utilities like Easeus and MiniTool etc. but once I realised that Macrium Reflect does indeed appear to be ahead of the others when it comes to making intelligent guesses about what the user might want to do, all I need to do before I can use my new not-quite-clone is to change its relevant registry entries in HKLM/SYSTEM/MountedDevices so that the new version doesn't get confused by pointers to stuff from the partition from which it was cloned.

Anyway, thanks again for taking the trouble to reply; Mark Russinovich and Shawn Brink are my heroes.

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Last updated November 16, 2020 Views 7,492 Applies to: