Upgrading a HardDrive – Game 3 – Overtime and out of Patience

Posted on Tuesday 29 April 2008

Okay, so while I still haven’t been able to get my windows images moved properly to my new drive I have been able to get around the insane way that I can’t re-partition my drives once Windows blesses them. So in my opinion the series is tied one win by Windows one by my tenacity and a little (okay BIG) help from Ubuntu’s install disk

I have to tell you, if you couldn’t tell from the title, I’m quickly losing patience here and am now considering moving my machine over to Ubuntu on the new drives and letting Windows rot where it is. Keeping a dual boot (able to run either when you turn the computer on ) and eventually moving whatever I can to freeware software and/or emulators

I have called Cygwin into play a lot during this exercise. It’s a great package of Unix/Linux tools that can run within Windows and it has once again re-affirmed my believe in a greater intelligence than Microsofts….

I have been using three key programs from Cygwin for this process:

  • du – a tool that shows me how much space is used within the disk (Disk Used)
  • diff – a tool that will compare two files and list the differences between them
  • wc – a tool that counts the words or lines within a file and gives the total (Word Count)
  • With those three tools I have been able to “quickly” (being a relative thing ) compare the original disk image with the new copied image and by counting the lines in the resulting comparison am able to discern just how many directories weren’t completely or properly transferred over…

    My discovery is – A LOT OF THEM! Now to be truthful we are talking about over 80GB worth of data and in the great scheme of things 8000 differences may not be a lot – but hey I’m picky!!

    Originally, on my very first attempt (when I had to roll back because my firewall wasn’t working) everything seemed to have copied over fine. These last few attempts…. not so well. The disk tool that I used from Western Digital (see previous article) left about 8000 differences and listed over 17000 errors that it ran into and couldn’t resolve!

    I was also getting some rather bizarre error messages saying “Out of Quota” (like that really helps eh! ) Research showed that the error messages could have been caused by anything from XP itself, to bad memory, to a shortage of disk-space, to the computer gods being grumpy…. pick one!

    Disk space I can’t fix – that’s why I’m trying to change the hard drive in the first place. I shut down my computer and checked and reset my memory cards – all seem normal there. And lastly I created a brand new administrators account and made sure that everything that normally booted up didn’t.

    I also need to add that I did try operating within the SAFE windows environment, minimizing all applications run, etc etc. What a pain. It took what usually took 6-8 hours (copying the files from one disk to the other) to 24-48 hours! Ouch!

    So now I have run the Disk Utility twice in a row and Xcopy twice as well. Each time I do the discrepancy shrinks and I am now down to only 3,000 differences (as of this writing) and am attempting one more time (trying to copy images on top of images).

    So this is it – it either works or it doesn’t (I may do one more desperate attempt at finding yet another utility first) either my Windows environment transfers or Ubuntu becomes my main operating system. Only time will tell – hang in there… the game ain’t over yet!

    End Article

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