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Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations? (Read 23950 times)
voximan
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Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Apr 9th, 2011 at 2:28pm
 
I'm planning to use Ghost 2003 - from the DOS version on a floppy - to clone my SATA2 hard drive to another. In other words, this will be a Disk to Disk operation. A couple of serious queries come to mind, though.

First, the single, resident hard drive now in my setup is a 1TB job and the second one (to be the recipient of cloning), which will be externally-attached and which I've not bought yet, will also be 1TB capacity. Given the controversy over whether 2003 can handle drives of this sort of capacity, do you reckon the cloning will work?

Second, assuming it WILL work, can anyone recommend a desktop USB carrier for a bare hard drive? I'm after a carrier that's known to have a proven USB interface, which isn't inordinately expensive, and which will be a temporary receptacle for the drive, not a total enclosure. For the external SATA drive (initially, the recipient drive), I'm thinking in terms of a Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB.

Back in the days when I used PATA drives, I had a caddy built into one of the 5-inch bays in the PC. SATA caddies can be obtained, I think, but I don't now want to install something permanently into the PC; I prefer to use an external carrier of some kind instead, something that I can easily disconnect and re-attach whenever necessary.

Oh, and can someone remind me whether, when cloning, the recipient drive needs to formatted at all before doing so? In other words, if the Samsung drive comes formatted to FAT32, will that matter at all, given that my resident drive uses NTFS?

Note: the above-mentioned 1TB controversy is interesting, as a year or two back I had a peculiar problem where partition imaging (as opposed to disk cloning) refused to work between a resident drive and an external drive which was identical. I can't recall the details but I think they were of capacities considerably less than 1TB. But, even using Build 793, I never managed to get Ghost DOS to even see the external drive. Later, however, the problem went away when I bought and used a different marque/model of external drive. I got the feeling, at the time, that Ghost had a problem when drives in that sort of arrangement were identical, so I wonder whether more recent talk of problems with 1TB and greater drives might be being misunderstood, particularly as some respondents say they've had no problems at all.
 
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #1 - Apr 10th, 2011 at 12:29am
 
have you seen this?

http://radified.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1269876015/

i am curious, too.

samsung makes good shit. i always use seagate.

why are you cloning? i always create an image.

brian has thoughts on this topic of preformatting.

i forget. i think it will take the formatting of the source, but i think you may not need to format, just partition.

i think external drives stopped shipping fat32 a few years back.

no doubt you will be able to provide valuable info.
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #2 - Apr 10th, 2011 at 4:35am
 
Gosh, I wish respondents wouldn't go off at a tangent and start asking me all sorts of other questions, even if they are related. All I want is some quick responses to one or two specific questions, I don't want to end up having to write a thesis on why I no longer use Seagate or why I want to perform a cloning operation rather than an image. Anyone with good experience of G2003 will already know the difference and therefore why.

Sorry if I'm seeming a bit brusque but I'm time-pressured at present.

Yes, I've already read through that thread. The overall impression given is that anything over 1TB will fail, whether attempting imaging or cloning. Thus, I'm assuming for now that 1TB exactly will work. Note that one or two people have claimed that they've successfully used Ghost to partition 1.5 and 2TB drives. It's just that we don't know whether they were using G2003 at the time. Hence the doubt about this matter.

Getting to one of my important questions, can anyone recommend an external USB carrier for bare SATA drives of this sort of capacity?
 
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #3 - Apr 11th, 2011 at 1:34pm
 
El_Pescador is/was the guru for external USB drive enclosures.

Some recommendations here:

http://radified.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1095438251/230#230

these may help, too:

http://radified.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1162268262/16#16

http://radified.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1222387570

http://radified.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1177385021

I just used the search function in/for the Ghost 2003 for terms like 'external usb enclosure'
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #4 - Apr 11th, 2011 at 4:06pm
 
Thanks Rad, but I think you've misunderstood the kind of device I'm after. I think the more usual name is a hard drive docking station, USB 2.0-connectable. I'm specifically not wanting a hard drive enclosure, as that rather destroys the whole point of the exercise, which is to clone my hard drive on different occasions without using an internal caddy or by opening the PC and temporarily fitting the second drive. Sorry if I wasn't clear about that, initially. With the docking device on my desk, I can then from time to time just drop the requisite drive into it and then run G2003 DOS to do a Disk Copy. Savvy?

As I've discovered myself in the past, and others have realised more recently, G2003 DOS is particular about the drivers that come into play with various marques/models of USB-connected drives. So Ghost recognises some external drives but not others. Thus, I'm hoping for some responses from Radified individuals who've used docking stations that definitely do work with G2003 DOS, and maybe others who can inform me of those docks/drives that don't.
 
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #5 - Apr 14th, 2011 at 1:34am
 
@
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Quote:
Sorry if I'm seeming a bit brusque but I'm time-pressured at present.

Hmmm....grumpy we are, are we?

How can someone using an 8-9 year old piece of software that is no longer supported by the company that made it--and asking questions for free advice on an Internet forum be *time-pressured at the present*?  Huh

Regardless.......

Quote:
why I want to perform a cloning operation rather than an image. Anyone with good experience of G2003 will already know the difference and therefore why.

Actually, anyone with experience (and good sense) would never do things the way you wish to--although your concept of doing cloning backups is the most common one we see.  You want an *exact copy* of your internal HDD ready at hand should your current internal HDD fail--you just simply put the *exact copy* in place of the failed HDD and you're up and running in minutes.  (You are aware that as soon as you complete that clone, the copies are no longer *exact copies* as soon as you boot again--right?!)

Personally, what I do--I have my current internal OS HDD, a second internal HDD to save Ghost 2003 image files to, and I have a third spare HDD on the shelf ready to replace the OS internal HDD if it fails.  I then put the replacement HDD in after removing the failed HDD (that takes the same amount of time that you will spend putting your cloned HDD in), restore the most recent Ghost image to the new HDD--10 minutes for an OS partition--longer for restoring a whole HDD of data if that's what you do--and I'm up and running.

The USB interface in DOS is *sloooooooooooooooooooooowwwwwwwww*--saving an image to an internal HDD is usually at least 3 times as fast--and on my newest system--it approaches 6-7 times faster!  So, all that time you think you are saving by being able to swap out an *exact clone* without taking the extra step of restoring an image file to a bare replacement HDD--really!  Do the math!  Oh, I'm sure you will say that you plan on doing those USB clones *overnight*--well, if you are going to *verify* those clones--oops--that's right, you don't get to *verify* a clone for *Integrity*--unless you take the time to swap it out with the existing HDD to make sure it actually will work if you ever need it!  (You can verify that an image file is *useable* without swapping it out or actually restoring it.....!).

So, let's get to the *meat and potatoes* of your question(s):

Quote:
First, the single, resident hard drive now in my setup is a 1TB job and the second one (to be the recipient of cloning), which will be externally-attached and which I've not bought yet, will also be 1TB capacity. Given the controversy over whether 2003 can handle drives of this sort of capacity, do you reckon the cloning will work?

What controversy?  Read the information here:

Ghost 2003 Destination Drive Size Limits?--see Dan Goodell's Reply #3!

Ghost 2003, based on known evidence presented in this forum, will work on HDDs with addressable space up to 1.099 TB  in size!  So, the answer to your question is clearly *yes*!  But, you're asking the wrong question!

Your real question should be *Will current DOS USB drivers and USB hardware handle large capacity SATA HDDs in DOS*?

I do not have a 1 TB SATA HDD to work with.  I have a 640 GB SATA HDD however.  And, I have two different USB adapters that allow attaching a SATA HDD to it for use on a USB port.  I have two desktop systems (2002, and 2010), and one laptop system (2005) to test on.

When I hook up the 640 GB SATA to either USB adapter, the HDD is accessable and the full size shows up on all three systems--in Windows (you did know that USB is a Windows based technology--and never actually developed as a DOS based technology--right?).  As soon as I boot to DOS, there are system freezes during boot, or after I attempt to load Ghost 2003--essentially whenever I attempt to load something that tries to access the *whole 650 GB HDD size*, there's a failure!  I have created a reduced partition size on the 640 GB HDD to 32 GB FAT 32 and the Ghost 2003 USB DOS drivers will successfully mount that 32 GB partition in DOS--but, the system freezes as soon as I attempt to load Ghost 2003 which is attempting to access the *whole* HDD size!

So, the answer to that *real question* I mentioned above, at least as I have discovered so far, is *No*!  Large capacity SATA HDDs do not appear to successfully work on USB adapters using DOS USB drivers in DOS.  There must be something *different* about how the drivers and adapters access SATA HDDs in DOS.  I have been successful with PATA HDDs up to 160 GB--but, I don't have a larger PATA HDD to test.

I suspect it would be best spending your time looking into the option of using an eSATA port adapter of some type.  If I understand correctly, the eSATA port will be attached internally to your standard SATA controller.  The eSATA port should allow you to hook up to an externally connected SATA HDD, it should show up as a *SATA HDD* as far as Ghost 2003 is concerned, and you will have SATA speeds (not USB speeds)!  Ghost 2003 sees SATA HDDs through SATA controllers without any problems that I have seen!

Let us know what you find out!
 

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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #6 - Apr 16th, 2011 at 10:38am
 
NightOwl,

I'll forgive the odd cheeky remark you've made about my use of time. I do have many other things to do, you know, and of late have had only a limited amount of time available to post on Radified.

That aside, thanks for your illustrative comments. Yes, you're right, it IS primarily about how the DOS drivers work. I do now have the setup I proposed earlier but - surprise, surprise - PC-DOS will not fully launch. Instead, it gets to the opening phase of the first screen of the GUI and then stops. I guess it just doesn't like the particular USB interface of the docking station. Looks like I'm stuffed for doing it that way. The station's made by Akasa and I thought their implementation of the USB interface would have been as bog-standard as just about any.

Currently, PC-DOS otherwise works fine on another external drive I've been using for the past year or two - a LaCie fully-enclosed, USB-connected drive. So, this is clearly very much device/manufacturer-dependent. I use the Lacie drive (500GB) for storing partition images made with Ghost PC-DOS. So, unlike the LaCie fully-enclosed drive, the new Samsung drive was intended as a fully cloneable one, that could be quickly swapped with my 1TB system drive in my PC, should the latter completely fail.

I think the only way open to me now is to clone the Samsung drive by temporarily installing it in the PC. But, of course, that completely defeats the object of having an external dock. It's obviously the USB interface that's the problem.

Another possible solution would be to try to find a SATA-type internal caddy. I used to use a PATA-type caddy when my drives were of that type, but the caddie had the disadvantage that it got very dust-laden inside, between cloning. You yourself have mentioned an e-SATA card maybe, but I'd prefer not to go that route, even though potentially the transfer rates would be faster. I'd perhaps end up with the same sort of incompatibility issue. At least, an internal caddy would be completely passive.

It seems to me that, for all the merits of Build 793 as regards external USB drives, it's a complete lottery when it comes to getting Ghost to work with a particular external drive. Even before the LaCie drive, a fully-enclosed Seagate external drive flatly refused to be seen by PC-DOS.

Further thoughts: I've had a look at what's available, here in the UK, as regards PCI and PCIe e-SATA cards. The impression I'm getting from reviews is one of poor compatibility and fault-ridden performance. My PC's limited to SATA 2 at best. The dock does have an e-SATA interface as well as USB. But I need convincing that use of an e-SATA PCI or PCIe card in the PC would be absolutely guaranteed to work with Ghost's PC-DOS, as I've bought several different computing items of late and have had to send almost all of them back because they simply don't work, and frankly I'm fed up with it, as each time I have to pay the carriage costs. What's so special about an internal e-SATA card that will make it work with the flakey Ghost PC-DOS drivers, compared to USB 2.0? Surely, given the respective years when these interfaces were introduced, the PC-DOS drivers are less likely to work with e-SATA?
 
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #7 - Apr 17th, 2011 at 12:47pm
 
@
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Quote:
But I need convincing that use of an e-SATA PCI or PCIe card in the PC would be absolutely guaranteed to work with Ghost's PC-DOS

Wow!  Pretty high standard--given all the variability out there in the PC world--many items might work just fine--if you didn't have the wrong motherboard (i.e. old technology?), or outdated software for the current hardware.

Quote:
What's so special about an internal e-SATA card that will make it work with the flakey Ghost PC-DOS drivers, compared to USB 2.0? Surely, given the respective years when these interfaces were introduced, the PC-DOS drivers are less likely to work with e-SATA?

Well, I haven't personally used eSATA as yet--might be trying it soon, being as my 640 GB SATA HDD can not be used with a USB adapter in DOS--and I will gladly report what I find.  But, that's probably going to be weeks, if not several months (low priority--I have other solutions that are perfectly fine for now!)

But, I think you have the *wrong idea* about eSATA.  It sounds like you already have a motherboard that is SATA based.  You only have to consider a PCI card if you don't have a SATA based motherboard, or if you have already used all your motherboard's SATA controller connectors for attaching other HDDs or SATA optical drives.  If you have an available SATA connection on the motherboard, it should be easy!

Look at this item here:  VANTEC 360UFS-BK Aluminum 3.5" Black USB 2.0/eSATA/FireWire 400(1394a) External Enclosure

And look at the pictures of the included adapter and cords:  VANTEC 360UFS connecting cables

The eSATA bracket go into a expansion slot on the back of the computer.  The internal end of the eSATA bracket cord is plugged into a SATA port on your motherboard.  The eSATA cable is plugged into the eSATA port on the eSATA bracket (similar to an external USB port--just different shape), and the other end is plugged into whatever device is housing your SATA HDD--be it an enclosure type device or docking station--with its eSATA port that you hookup to.

eSATA is just a new way to connect external devices to your internal SATA controller(s)--you can connect either HDDs or SATA optical drives. 

As far as your system is concerned, I think it will *see* the external SATA HDD as if you had opened up the system and installed and attached the HDD to the internal SATA connector.  So, there are no DOS drivers involved!  If your system is configured to allow DOS access to your present internal HDD, then it should present the external SATA HDD to DOS just the same--as if you now had an internal SATA HDD installed!

However, DOS is not *hot-swapping* aware (just like it can't do hot-swapping of USB devices!), so you can not connect and disconnect your SATA devices that are connected via eSATA ports.  They have to be connected and powered up before booting to DOS just like using an external USB device.

Now, the sample above is a multi--connection enclosure for SATA HDDs--up to 2 TB in size.  As far as I know, there should not be any *intermediate conversions* going on if you are hooking up your SATA HDD to a SATA port.  If you instead are using the enclosure to hook up via USB or FireWire 400 (1394a) port--then the enclosure probably has to make compatibility translations to talk to those controllers--that's where you would need DOS drivers to successfully talk to the controller in question in order to communicate properly.

And, the above unit is more complicated than you probably need.  You can eliminate the Firewire (1394a) port--so like this:  VANTEC NST-300SU-BK Aluminum 3.5" USB & eSATA External Enclosure

There what appears to multiple *docking stations* available, as options.

Can I *absolutely guarantee* any of this will work on your system--nope--but, it looks like a promising option given what you want to do (and continue to use that old Ghost 2003 software  Wink --don't get me wrong--I'm still using that old Ghost 2003 software--but, I have to make compromises with both hardware and software, and Windows software setups to make it continue to work!)
 

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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #8 - Apr 18th, 2011 at 6:14am
 
Sorry if I'm being really dumb about this, but I don't follow your logic. Okay, it's an e-SATA bracket, rather than a card, but surely some software is involved, to make the e-SATA connection function when plugged into a SATA2 port, isn't it? If so, that'd be a risky experiment!

Surely, a USB connection eventually ends up going through the same sort of motherboard controller as any other external bus connection, so why should e-SATA be any different in principle here to USB? I don't see why, if Ghost won't even fully launch with USB, it should launch with e-SATA. Surely, there has to be a difference at the software level between SATA2 and e-SATA, as otherwise why didn't the standards bodies just adopt the SATA2 connector shell for external connectivity? Surely, the difference between SATA2 and e-SATA isn't just the connector, is it?

Another point - and I risk further criticism here - is that this will involve further expenditure and, frankly with the amount of PC hardware that I've been having to return to suppliers in the last few months because it simply doesn't work properly, I'm extremely loath to dip into my pocket once again. There's more than one e-SATA interface in circulation as well; if you don't believe me, look it up on Wikipedia. I think the one fitted to the Akasa docking station is an interim one.

Although I see where you're coming from over this, Nightowl, in trying to make the externally-mounted Samsung feel like it's fitted to one of the PC's internal SATA ports, I think you're forgetting that the docking station has an e-SATA interface in it and it's that that, in any event, Ghost would have to deal with.

Postscript: I've been doing some googling on "e-SATA  brackets" and I think you may have a good point, Nightowl as, so far, it does appear that the only difference between a SATA2 port and an e-SATA port is the physical shell. So, if I can ascertain that the e-SATA cable provided with the Akasa docking station is going to be compatible, I may well invest the small sum of money required to get one of those brackets. Startech make one that has two e-SATAs on the bracket.


 
 
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #9 - Apr 18th, 2011 at 6:40am
 
@
voximan

I've used both in my computer. eSATA plugged into the motherboard and an eSATA card.

voximan wrote on Apr 18th, 2011 at 6:14am:
but surely some software is involved, to make the e-SATA connection function when plugged into a SATA2 port? 

No software needed. Just plug it in. For an eSATA card you only need drivers. I have a Lacie SiI3132 - PCI Express (1x) to 2 Port SATA300.

Edit....   Ghost 2003 sees the partition on the eSATA HD as 3:1 (third HD).
 
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #10 - Apr 18th, 2011 at 7:48am
 
Yeh, the only problem I can foresee with using this e-SATA bracket thingy is that care will be needed when installing and then uninstalling the Samsung drive. Unlike USB, you can't just plug and unplug SATA connections with the PC running, not least because the system BIOS will get confused. So, when wanting to do a clone using G2003, I'm not sure of the safest way in which to power up the docking station and then, later, to power it down. Because the Samsung will be seen as a SATA-connected drive, the BIOS will need to detect it during the booting up of the PC. Unless you allow the BIOS to do so, neither Windows nor G2003 will see the drive.

And the question is: how would I later remove the Samsung from the PC? If you just power the docking station off, with the PC still on, you'll likely corrupt something, as in normal circumstances HDDs aren't hot-swappable. If you power down the PC before powering down the docking station, could the SATA interface in the PC be damaged by quiescent but nonetheless active SATA signals coming from the Samsung? Indeed, could random signals pass across the interface? Inside a standard PC, practically everything normally powers up and down simultaneously. Perhaps, for these sorts of reasons, it's better to use some sort of e-SATA PCI card?

Afterthought: Oh, I've just recalled something else that might prove problematic. It's a long time since I did a Disk-to-Disk copy of any sort where the disk interface is direct, but what I now remember about it is that, directly after cloning, you have to be ultra-careful not to allow Ghost to boot back into Windows, as otherwise you ended up with two identical drives, each claiming to be the boot drive. Result - a corrupted system. Similarly, when you later needed to re-clone, you had to never miss getting into the BIOS as, if that happened, you also got both drives each trying to boot into Windows. Also, where the two physical drives were of the same capacity, it was nigh on impossible to tell which was the source drive and which was the destination drive initially in Ghost (DOS), as Ghost doesn't show any other identifiers other than the formatted capacity. I think I've a note somewhere of a solution to this latter problem, though. It involves doing a dummy Partition-to-Image, having previously put a dated folder into the root partition of the source drive, and then reading that date while in Ghost. Having identified which drive is which, you can then proceed instead with Disk-to-Disk.
 
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #11 - Apr 18th, 2011 at 9:04pm
 
I see you have NightOwl & Brian helping. That's about as good as it gets.
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #12 - Apr 19th, 2011 at 11:17am
 
@
voximan

eSATA = *external SATA*

Quote:
Unlike USB, you can't just plug and unplug SATA connections with the PC running

Well, technically, all my USB devices are listed in the System Tray under *Safely Remove Hardware*--unless you use that method to disconnect, your USB attached HDD could also experience data corruption if Windows has not finished any pending writes to it.

Quote:
not least because the system BIOS will get confused

Why do you say that?  Have you had such a problem?  My BIOS detects whatever I attach--and if later a device has been removed, then the BIOS does not report the presence of a device--I've never had any confusion!

Quote:
I'm not sure of the safest way in which to power up the docking station and then, later, to power it down

Any documentation with your Akasa docking station?  Does it recommend *best practice* regarding connecting and disconnecting and powering up and down?

As best I can guess--with the system powered down, I would connect the external HDD that is attached to the docking station or enclosure that is connected via the eSATA cabling to the system and then power the docking station up so the HDD is running.  Then power up the system.  Perform whatever cloning that I needed to do either directly booting to DOS (or it looks like you first load Windows and use the Ghost 2003 Ghost interface in Windows to set up your cloning and then let Ghost close out Windows and re-boot to DOS where Ghost does its thing--and then Ghost boots back to Windows--is that what you normally do?).  Then I would power down the system.  And then power down the docking station and disconnect it--before powering back up to Windows.

Quote:
If you power down the PC before powering down the docking station, could the SATA interface in the PC be damaged by quiescent but nonetheless active SATA signals coming from the Samsung?

This seems unlikely--if this was a problem, then eSATA docking stations would not exist--you have to be able to attach and detach an external device somehow--my best guess!

Quote:
what I now remember about it is that, directly after cloning, you have to be ultra-careful not to allow Ghost to boot back into Windows, as otherwise you ended up with two identical drives, each claiming to be the boot drive. Result - a corrupted system.

I think that problem began back when the first NT versions of Windows came out, and pre-Ghost 2003--the NT systems began using the NT-signature in the Master Boot Record to identify which drive was which so the assigned drive letters could be remembered whether you move the drive from one HDD controller to another. 

Ghost 2003's default behavior is to erase the NT-signature on the destination HDD--this forces Windows to re-assign drive letters to that HDD--and not see it as *identical* to the source drive that it was cloned from.  So, I think that problem does not actually exist any longer--unless you use cloning switches that force Ghost to preserve that NT-signature on the destination drive.

Quote:
when you later needed to re-clone, you had to never miss getting into the BIOS as, if that happened, you also got both drives each trying to boot into Windows

Not sure here what you are talking about--on my newer system you go into the BIOS and tell it which HDD (i.e. connected to a specific controller) is to be the boot HDD.  Once that's set, you can have as many other HDDs on the system as you want (all bootable)--but, the one you have set is the one that will boot.  Those other HDDs are listed to choose from--but, they will not change the BIOS settings behind your back--you're in charge--at least on my system! 

On my older systems, you had to connect a boot HDD to the primary PATA controller in the Master position on the cable in order for it to be the boot drive--you could not enter the BIOS and select which HDD on which controller would be bootable!

Quote:
where the two physical drives were of the same capacity, it was nigh on impossible to tell which was the source drive and which was the destination drive initially in Ghost

Yes, you do have to figure those things out.  The order of the HDDs in the DOS Ghost interface will be based on the order that the BIOS sees each of the SATA ports.  So if you hook up your internal main HDD to SATA port 0 (or 1--depending on how your BIOS reports the ports) and the eSATA port is the next available port--then the first HDD (at the top) should be your main HDD--and the second listed HDD should be the eSATA connected HDD.  Of course, if the first time you do this, the eSATA HDD should be blank--so if you go into the *Local > Partition >  To Image* you will see your partition(s) listed for you existing main HDD--and nothing will show up if you select the blank destination HDD.  Once you know the correct order--write it down, and unless you change your cabling--that order should be the same each time you use Ghost on that system.
 

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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #13 - Apr 20th, 2011 at 11:56am
 
@
Brian

Quote:
I've used both in my computer. eSATA plugged into the motherboard and an eSATA card.

So, you have experience!  Any thoughts on *hot swapping* and powering up and down and connecting and disconnecting eSATA devices on a system?

The SATA protocols allow for hot swapping--but, how is that implemented on a system?  Do the HDDs show up in the System Tray *Safely Remove Hardware* application. 

And, do I remember correctly--do you have to configure the HDDs to use AHCI (Advanced Host Controller Interface) in the BIOS for hot swapping to work? 

I don't think DOS--or at least DOS Ghost-- will not work if AHCI is active in the BIOS for SATA HDDs.
 

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No question is stupid ... but, possibly the answers are Wink !
 
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Re: Planning to clone a whole SATA drive: any recommendations?
Reply #14 - Apr 20th, 2011 at 3:36pm
 
@
NightOwl

I haven't used an eSATA HD plugged directly into the MB for a few years. I didn't try hot swapping. On my system it was a pain. I had to shut down, connect the eSATA HD, turn the SATA port ON in the BIOS and boot into Windows. When finished with the eSATA HD I shut down, disconnected the eSATA HD and turned the SATA port OFF in the BIOS. If I didn't turn the port OFF I'd get a warning message at each boot about a HD not being connected (or something similar).

I now use an eSATA card and it is as simple as using a USB HD. When needed I hot plug the eSATA HD. To disconnect the eSATA HD I use Hot Swap.

http://mt-naka.com/hotswap/index_enu.htm#download

My BIOS is set to AHCI and Ghost 2003 sees the internal SATA HDs and the eSATA HD. The eSATA card has its own BIOS and I used to know what this enabled but I've forgotten. We had a thread where someone had an eSATA card without a BIOS and couldn't do "something".

Edit... I found this.

http://radified.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/YaBB.pl?num=1248583770/18#18

Maybe the card needs a BIOS to work with Ghost 2003.
 
 
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