June 26, 2014

Cloning a hard drive using the "dd" command on ubuntu server 12.04.3 LTS

I am moving away from a desktop gui. Not!!!

I just solved a frustrating problem. I had a system that had windows XP installed on a 61GB IDE hard drive that ran out of space. It was more complicated then moving files to another storage device. I had to anticipate more programs being installed. The only solution was to use a bigger hard drive. I was able to clone the old hard drive using the "dd" commandline program. I had to do it on my Ubuntu server because none of my other systems had IDE controllers.

I normally would use a gui program, but my server is not a desktop. Knew about the capabilities of "dd", writing ISOs to dvds. It put a smile on my face. Cloned the old drive to a bigger 163GB drive and all is better.

The "dd" program is installed by default. Read the man pages of this program to understand its usage. Could be a real life saver. I would not recommend using this program on a drive that is in bad shape. "dd" makes a bit copy of a storage media. That means it copies a storage bit by bit. Be very careful when using it on a drive that has physical damage.

Man page for dd