Preparing to restore to a new disk ; is it better to image, or to clone ?


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Clairvaux
Clairvaux
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I am about to retire my old mechanical disk devoted to data, and replace it with a brand new one. The program Hard Disk Sentinel says this about the existing disk :

There are 3 bad sectors on the disk surface. The contents of these sectors were moved to the spare area.
The drive found 2 bad sectors during its self test.
There is 1 weak sector found on the disk surface. It may be remapped any time in the later use of the disk.

What is the best method to ensure existing problems do not port over to the new disk ? Clone, or image then restore ?

I use a separate system disk, and I already replaced the old mechanical disk devoted to it with an SSD. If memory serves right, I imaged and restored.

[Note : I'm not a new member. I've been using Macrium for years. For some reason, the forum doesn't want to send me email alerts. So I tried repeatedly to reconfirm my email address, but I never receive the activation mail, despite the forum saying it sent it. That's why it says "awaiting activation", and it seems I'm set to wait for ever. That's the email I used to buy Macrium ages ago, and the system recognizes it.]
Edited 18 October 2020 9:34 PM by Clairvaux
jphughan
jphughan
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As long as all of the data is still readable, then problematic sectors don't carry over to other drives because the very nature of problematic sectors is that they are specific to the hardware itself.  Copying data from one drive to another won't cause the data to be copied in a way that will inflict damage on the destination.  Even if you had bad sectors where active data resided, then to my knowledge there's no difference in terms of how Reflect handles that situation when reading the source as part of a clone operation vs. an image backup, but Macrium Support might be able to weigh in on that here.

Apart from that potential difference though, there isn't going to be a difference in the end result on the new disk between these two migration methods.  The only differences are in how you get there.  All else being equal, a clone will be faster because you're copying data straight from source to the destination in a single operation.  But it requires you to have the appropriate hardware to have the source and destination devices connected simultaneously, e.g. multiple drive bays/slots or appropriate adapters.  Not everyone has those, especially those with laptop users working with M.2 SSDs, since most laptops only have one M.2 slot for storage and not everyone has M.2 SATA or M.2 NVMe to USB adapters.

By comparison, an image and restore is a two-step process where you "park" your data on a third device, such as an external hard drive or network location.  Essentially, you capture the content of your source disk to a file, and then as a separate process restore the contents of that file to your destination.  That takes longer because you have to write your data to that intermediate location and read from that location to your destination rather than going straight from source to destination.  But if you don't have the type of hardware I described above for a clone operation, then this might be easier overall.  And it has the side benefit of leaving you with a nice backup of your source disk all wrapped up in a single file.

GO

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