3750: Cloned SATA will not boot

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Fred Moore
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I have spent nearly an entire day formatting an external USB/SATA 1GB drive and then cloning my 250Gb drive to it.  After all this the 1Gb drive will NOT boot.  My suspicion is that in this whole process tne BOOT RECORD did not get copied to the new drive.  If this is the case, and I am running XP -SP2, can I place a boot record on this USB connected drive, and if so, how do I do this because XP does not have FDISK?

I forgot to add, I used the CLONE function and I am using the 2009 Home Edition.  I also am not a neophyte to computers, however, this is the firs time I have ever used this CLONE function and basically the first time I have used Acronis software.  If the Boot record did not make it from the 250Gb boot disk to the target drive, then how do I get it on the target drive, be it natively attached or or via USB?

Fred Moore
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I forgot to add, I am using the 2009 Home version, and am running XP SP2.  I recently purchased this package and this is the first time I have ever used any Acronis product.  I am also not a neophyte to PC's.  If the boot record did not get from the 250Gb boot drive to the target USB attached 1Tb drive, is it possible to do an equivalent Fdisk \mbr since XP does not provide this anymore?

dh27564
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Seems like I read somewhere in this forum that Windows will not boot from external USB drives.

Fred Moore
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Well, I believe actually it will.  I think that is all setup in the bios of the motherboard.  You can actually boot from thumb drives if I am not mistaking.

However, my intention was to basically do the clone to the USB drive and then move it into the direct attached position on the system and not actually boot from the USB port at all..  The actual reason for all this is that I was hearing the disk actuator arm dead stopping in the drive.  NOT GOOD.  So I decided that since I purchased Avronis Home 2009, it might not be a bad idea to clone "A" drive and get that bad drive out before it just goes into self distruct mode.  So I did all the formatting and cloning on the usb port.  What is happening is that the system goes into the bios boot portion and never comes out with the new drive.  Another interesting thing is that I can plug it into a USB port right now and actually view the disk with Windows Explorer.  So in my opinion, I think the drive actually got cloned, but I dont think Track 0 ever got written.

Does this explain it better?

bin
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Fred Moore wrote:

Well, I believe actually it will.  I think that is all setup in the bios of the motherboard.  You can actually boot from thumb drives if I am not mistaking.

Yes, it is the bios that determines which devices can be booted from not the op system.

Mark Wharton
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dh27564 is correct; Windows will not boot from USB devices - it was specifically designed NOT to.

You are correct to install the disk internally after cloning. TI will automatically write Track 0 during the clone process, but here are a few pitfalls that you could check:

1. When cloning, it is very important that you shut the PC down after the clone process completes and that you do not boot the PC with the original and the clone both attached at the same time. If you do this, Windows will alter one of the disks during the first boot - it does not like to see two identical disks attached. If you did boot with both disks attached you should repeat the clone process. First, use Windows Disk Management to delete all of the partitions on the target disk so that it is blank. Then install it in the external USB enclosure and repeat the cloning process. When finished, shut down the PC, remove the clone from the external enclosure and install it in place of the existing disk. Continue with the next step.

2. Some PCs will alter the boot order when a disk is removed. You may need to double-check the BIOS to be sure that the clone is listed as the first bootable hard disk.

Many of us here prefer the Reverse Clone, which is needed if your PC BIOS uses a nonstandard disk geometry (Lenovo, Compaq, and some other brands use 240-head BIOS geometry). If you continue to have problems, try a reverse clone. Remove the primary disk and install it in the external USB enclosure. Install the new, blank, target disk internally. Boot the PC from the Acronis recovery CD and clone from the external to the internal disk. Be careful of the settings - you do not want to erase the source disk. When the clone process finishes, shut down the PC, disconnect the USB external disk and then reboot into Windows.

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Mark Wharton
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bin wrote:
Yes, it is the bios that determines which devices can be booted from not the op system.

bin: The PC will boot from USB devices if the BIOS supports USB booting. But Windows will not boot from USB devices. USB drivers are not loaded until later in the boot process, so the boot will fail. You can boot Linux from a USB drive, or the Acronis recovery environment, or rescue disks, but not Windows.

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bin
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Oh right, thanks Mark

Fred Moore
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Here a couple of other tid bits.  I am running an older piece of hardware MB P4, and the SATA connection is on a Silicon Image SIL 3112 SATA Link 2 port controller.  That particular card is at least a couple of years old and I am not sure if it will handle a 1Tb drive, but neither did a 4 port Silicon Image SA 3114.  So I went out and purchased a 500Gb SATA drive and did NOT jumper the drive for the 1.5Gbit/sec transfer rate, letting it use the default 3.0Gbit  transfer rate using the 3112 controller and it created a clone with NO problems.  I believe I got a bad drive.  

Does anyone know if there is a possibility of a flash bios on the drive that I could replace and see if that would fix this problem?  I have never done any upgrades to HDD before? and the other issue is does anyone know what the upper limits of the 3112 controller are?

Mark Wharton
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Fred:

The SI3112 specifications are here. Since the chip supports 48-bit addressing, a 1 TB drive should not be a problem. The upper limit, if any, would be established by the BIOS of the motherboard. I've got an older Intel motherboard that uses the exact same chip, but have never tried connecting a disk larger than 320 GB to it, so I can't say for sure. Does your motherboard documentation mention any kind of upper limit?

The only thing that I know about firmware flashing of hard disks is that Seagate specifically states that they will not make firmware available for download, so if your disk is made by Seagate, your only option is to return it for repair. Other disk manufacturers probably do the same thing, but you'd have to check their policies to be sure.

Could you try cloning to the 1 TB disk on another PC? Use the Acronis boot CD so that you don't need to install TI on the other PC.

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Fred Moore
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Good afternoon Mark,

I went back to Fry's and they replaced my 1TB Seagate disk with another like disk.  I firmly believe there was a problem with the 1Tb drive.  I am actually going to do one more CLONE and see if it will work.  The other interesting thing is that after I cloned the first !Tb drive , it would NOT work on either of the controllers I have, the 3112 being a 2 port and the 3114 being a 4 port.  Nada Nothing.  So I will try the clone again on the new drive and see it in fact was the disk.

And on another note, I only found the 3114 docs at your link you posted.  I couldn't find the 3112.

Anyway, I will get back with the results.

GroverH
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Fred,

Do try the cloning process using the reverse method as K0LO has described in his posting:

Quote:
Many of us here prefer the Reverse Clone, which is needed if your PC BIOS uses a nonstandard disk geometry (Lenovo, Compaq, and some other brands use 240-head BIOS geometry). If you continue to have problems, try a reverse clone. Remove the primary disk and install it in the external USB enclosure. Install the new, blank, target disk internally. Boot the PC from the Acronis recovery CD and clone from the external to the internal disk. Be careful of the settings - you do not want to erase the source disk. When the clone process finishes, shut down the PC, disconnect the USB external disk and then reboot into Windows.

Craig Baker
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Cloned drive goes into loop before windows xp finishes loading. "loading your settings- saving your settings- logging off- etc - etc - etc" until I power down.
Upgrading from 300 GB to 500GB. Have repeated cloning process many times to two different target drives. With and without NT signature. Behaves the same each time. Third day.

Mark Wharton
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Craig:

Are the old and new drives the same type (IDE/SATA) and is the replacement drive connected to the same interface type (if the old drive was connected to IDE port 0 is the new drive also connected to the same port)?

It's likely that the new disk is configured in the BIOS for AHCI mode and the Windows XP disk that you cloned from did not have the AHCI driver installed. If this is the case, go to your BIOS setup and look for an "IDE Compatibility" mode setting for your disks. Try that.

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Craig Baker
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Yes SATA to SATA configured as IDE. They are both (not simultaneously) connected to the internal SATA. The cloned drive(s) boot normally until the very last step before the windows xp desktop. Thanks for any insight. I am stuck.

Mark Wharton
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Craig:

That symptom usually indicates a driver issue. Is the cloned disk being booted on the same hardware as the source disk? If so, a Windows XP repair install might fix this.

But before you try that could you describe what's on the source disk that you cloned? How many partitions? What is the content of each partition?

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Craig Baker
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three partitions C: is a legacy win98 partition that goes back a couple of upgrades. E:is win xp pro and D: is data only.
I followed this same upgrade path in 2007 with Acronis TrueImage 9 except in that case I went from IDE to SATA and it worked on the first try.

Mark Wharton
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Does Win98 boot correctly?

One other possibility is that on your first boot attempt when XP was assigning its drive letters, it got C: and E: interchanged.

Which version of TI are you using?
Do you have a boot CD like BartPE, a Vista DVD, or a Win7 DVD?

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Craig Baker
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K0LO - Win98 hangs up early on as it did on the source drive. I used to need the dual boot configuration.

I just download the acronis 10 software friday as the version 9 was not completing the clone

I don't have bartPE, but am looking at it.

Mark Wharton
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Craig:

I'm really suspicious of the drive letter assignments. If you booted Windows XP first, it would probably have grabbed the C: drive letter for its partition. So my hunch is that the drive letter assignments in the XP registry have C: and E: swapped. You can fix this by swapping them back. But since neither OS boots you need to boot into a repair environment like BartPE or the Vista or Win7 DVDs to gain access to the XP registry to edit it. You would be looking for the registry key at HKEY_Local_Machine\System\MountedDevices and would want to examine the assignments for the three partitions as shown in this figure:

If you have a way to do this then we can provide further instructions.

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