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Messed up...

Discussion in 'General Linux' started by PcBuilderEd, Aug 6, 2017.

  1. PcBuilderEd

    PcBuilderEd New Member

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    Hey fellas great posts, as usual, thanks! I did find an image from a year ago I had on an external drive. So am I right in thinking that if I use the recovery USB and Image that should restore my computer to pre-incident? I also copied the recovery USB files onto the recovery(E: partition). Atanare since that was the way it was in the first place I'm betting the UEFI would be able to find it. However what I hope to do now is copy the entire C: drive, partitions and all, onto the external hard drive. I think you mentioned this atanare, is there a way to do this? Then Ill go through the steps you stated above atan and should be there. So close!


     
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  2. wizardfromoz

    wizardfromoz Active Member

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    Credit paid where credit is due, friend.

    You are an intrepid man, performing those tasks detailed above, we might have to get Rob to create a bravery medal to add to the Gold Supporter?

    But it looks encouraging for the OP. As you say, differences between BOIS scenaria and UEFI scenaria might yield a little difference, but overall I would expect a similar result. The 1TB Toshiba Satellite I worked on 2 years ago was UEFI and had Windows 8.1 on it. I took one or 10 looks at the Metro Tiles approach, and the difficulty in getting to a recognizable desktop and went "Gaaack!"

    Windows Disk Management would only allow me to shrink the drive by half, but that was enough. I chose the "alongside Windows" option as you did, put a "Mintie" on it, then blew away Windows, and worked from there.

    @ the OP:

    Ed, one thing I must not forget. If you are looking to install Linux, and you only have one (1) partition available for it ... when you do the Linux install, choose the "other" or "manual" option, I think it is "something else". But if you have two (2), you can probably go as atanere did. The reason?

    With the four (4) partition rule, and a large HDD, you are better off creating your Linux partition as an "Extended Partition", not a Primary one. You can then place within that Extended partition, as few as one (1) Logical partition, up to many, now or later.

    I'll check with "Russell" (I'll try to "rustle" up something, that illustrates this simply).

    Meantime, it's Friday arvo my time, so you know I'm going to say

    avagudweegend

    ... and I'll cobble together something on Swap for The Viewers as soon as time permits.

    Cheers

    Wizard

    BTW - sorry PcBuilderEd, missed the page 2 Post, my bad!

    Sounds like a Clonezilla job, but you can wait for atanere if you'd rather. Let us know how big is the external drive and powered with USB or portable with just USB

    Edited - added BTW
     
    #22 wizardfromoz, Aug 11, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2017
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  3. wizardfromoz

    wizardfromoz Active Member

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    Just an f/u (follow up, I abbreviate everything, drives my wife Elaine crackers) for the OP.

    A quick Google search using "Clonezilla youtube" will give you almost 2 pages of videos, some better than others. Narrowing the search to "Clonezilla windows youtube" produces fewer results, but the same video features in both in the top 2 or so, and it is this:



    A bit rough around the edges, and 3 years old, but to my casual glance still very accurate.

    Hope this helps

    Wiz
     
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  4. atanere

    atanere Moderator
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    Tell us more about that! What kind of image? What program did you use to make it? Was it with Windows 7? If you made it before the switch to Win 10, wouldn't you rather use that?

    No. Not if I understood correctly earlier that the USB was Win 10. Your USB is not a recovery program. Or, at least I don't think so. I think it will only "recover" what is on the USB itself... Win 10. If you boot on it, it will probably prompt you to reinstall Win 10 (but there is a chance that it is an "image" such that it may contain other software you installed, and it may have saved the Windows activation, etc). I'm curious what it is, exactly, but I don't know if you will choose to try it.

    Again, no, not exactly (or I may again be misunderstanding). What it was in the first place in that partition was your Windows 7 recovery, set up by HP at the factory, but you formatted over that. I'm not sure when your USB files were put there, other that you said you just did that. Like the mystery with the USB stick, I'm curious about this whole deal, but I don't know if you will choose to try it, or not. If you think that UEFI will find it and boot it.... as if it were the original HP recovery.... then reboot the computer and hit the appropriate F-key (F11, F12, whatever... it should display the proper key to select for Recovery).... and see if it actually works. This is a serious step too though, so think about it. Your SYSTEM partition may call up the actual Recovery program, so it may seem like it will work, but unless you actually tell it to keep going, you won't know if it will find the file(s) on the E: drive partition. Ah, and then... what are they? Win 7 or 10? Or would you put the old recovery image that you just found back in the E: drive?

    But it is a decent chance that it will not boot into recovery with the F-key anyway, if it is not the original file(s) in the same structure as HP provided it. But maybe it will... who knows. Only trying these things will say for sure.

    Yes, this can be done, and the video that Wiz provided is very accurate in that demo. But go slow here... I think you will have to deviate from the video. I thought I'd give it a test run today, and all went fine step-by-step until just beyond the part of selecting the source and target drives. I then encountered a FAILED report because my 4 TB external hard drive was too big for the MBR selections that were made by taking the default choices like in the video. It did still create some cloned partitions, in spite of the error, but the external hard drive was not bootable afterwards. And I did not try to restore the partitions by booting the CloneZilla CD again.

    Let me also remind you that the video was truthful when it said, "This will erase everything on the target drive!" I can confirm that (with only a test folder and a few files to see if they were deleted). I said earlier that I'm not a fan of making images like this, so I am not real familiar with this process myself. But it does seem like if it is successful that it will make a bootable hard drive that you can restore the partition images from. But this is a rather clumsy process, and like earlier warnings.... it is only as good as your ability to use the software later to recover those partitions. You should do some trials if possible to learn the ins and outs of how this works.

    But wait... there's more. You will need to learn some extra steps and not use the defaults in the video for the same reason (sort of) that my attempt failed today. I have a BIOS computer, and so it uses MBR. But my failure was because 4 TB is not MBR compatible... and I needed GPT instead. Your computer is not BIOS, it is UEFI.... and so you need GPT right off the bat for that reason. I hope this makes sense to you. Too much alphabet soup! :eek::D But what I'm getting at is that I think you will need to explore the CloneZilla options to choose the proper settings for UEFI and GPT in order to get a good recovery on your hard drive. A hard drive is kind of an expensive item to dedicate for this, so you may change your mind here.

    I will do more experiments to help, but I'll be severely limited for the next 4 or 5 days due to work again. I have a UEFI laptop that I can use next time, and I can even put Windows back on it if needed, or I can just try CloneZilla with the Linux partitions that it has and try to document the steps for UEFI/GPT cloning if you still want to proceed with this.

    Sorry again for length... I wish I could be more concise! :confused:

    Cheers
     
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  5. PcBuilderEd

    PcBuilderEd New Member

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    I 100% agree, something fluorescent or shiny, preferably both.
    OZ sorry about the Clonezilla, you guys stated this above. I looked at it and since it was a Linux distro I assumed it would only work with Linux. My mistake, the video will be nice thought when I clone it.
     
  6. PcBuilderEd

    PcBuilderEd New Member

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    The image is maybe 30GB and created using Windows 10. This was after I switched so I'm sure Windows 7 is erased. The external hard drive is 250GB and is portable, is powered by the USB. This should be enough I would imagine to get what I need. I honestly am not worried about what version of Windows I get, as long as it works. I am planning on going back to school. So Linux should be my primary OS (assuming all goes well, but I have a crack team of Linux experts so I envision a Linux Super Star Destroyer pulverizing my adversaries, maybe even a death star). So I need to know I can get windows to work if needed. Cloning the hard drive is a back up measure so if things go badly I can restore everything asneeded.
     
  7. PcBuilderEd

    PcBuilderEd New Member

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    Apologies I lost my thoughts. If cloning the drive becomes clumbsy or not useful as a backup I can skip this, as long I the USB can be reasonably relied on as a windows recovery if needed. Ill probably create a second USB for recovery just to be safe. Can I test these drives somehow to make sure? If so I'm happy to skip the cloning altogether. I also think the recovery drive is probably a good place to repartition to have Linux. I'm not sure whats in HP and System so I'm thinking I can just leave them and since the recovery is already overwritten I can use that.
     
    #27 PcBuilderEd, Aug 12, 2017 at 6:21 AM
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017 at 6:32 AM
  8. atanere

    atanere Moderator
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    Cloning is useful too. It's just different from recovery. Recovery is a fresh install (which I prefer). Restoring a cloned image is usually bringing back a former installation (so you need to remember passwords, for example). Some folks prefer cloning to bring back all their favorite apps that were installed, etc. There are pros and cons to both.

    I'd like to see you test your USB, but it may erase your hard drive and do a fresh install of Windows 10. In my view, that's a good thing, but you may feel otherwise. But testing it means you know what you have. If it is the recovery method that you desire, then save the USB, and feel confident that it is a tested means to restore your Windows.

    If you want to clone your current setup... or if you want to install Linux first and then clone... I will review CloneZilla steps again from a UEFI/GPT environment and try to help guide you to create a usable set of images (Windows+Linux) that can be restored. But you need to get familiar with how to use CloneZilla to restore it later... many months, or years, from now.

    Just about all options entails some risk or another (so backups are always important). A simple clone right now with no other changes is the least risk, but it will wipe out everything on your external hard drive (so that is risk too if you didn't realize that). Installing Linux before a clone is a risk... because installing an OS is always a risk. If you get into an unbootable state, you may have to use that recovery USB and hope that it works (or you can always go Linux only).

    If you want to install Linux in the existing Recovery (E: drive) partiton, then your first step should be to shrink your WIndows volume to allow more room for Linux. Shrinking Windows should create "unallocated space".... then if that unallocated space shows that it is immediately next to the Recovery (E: drive) partition, you can delete the Recovery (E: drive) partiton and the two unallocated spaces will be joined, making a nice big partition for Linux (do not format it). If the unallocated space is NOT immediately adjacent to the Recovery (E: drive) partition.... then they will likely not join together and this is a problem too. (If this happens, what is between them?)

    I'm just trying to point out your options and the benefits or consequences of your choices. Whatever you pick, Wiz and I (and others) will try to help get you there.
     
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  9. wizardfromoz

    wizardfromoz Active Member

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    Not sure where you guys are in your sleep cycle but below is part of a work in progress I was compiling in LibreOffice Writer.

    You can probably see my train of thought.

    I was then going to follow on with the uses that can be made of the USB portable HDD.

    BTW if defrag cannot move unmovable blocks, there are options such as
    AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard Edition
    found here (freeware for private)

    http://www.disk-partition.com/free-partition-manager.html

    ... which might be of benefit, but I do not use Windows

    Cheers

    Wizard
     
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  10. PcBuilderEd

    PcBuilderEd New Member

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    OK guys sorry I took the weekend off. But I think I am now bout ready to dive in. I made a 2nd USB recovery just to be safe. The only worry is that I don't know how to test them. It sounds like testing them would delete the current Windows 10 for a fresh install. If it works great, but if it fails I will have created the problem in hopes of solving it. If windows stops working at some point ill give the Recovery USBs a try and if they don't work then ill be getting a new copy of Windows or talking to MS to see if I can get one with the product key. I'm thinking I will not clone the hard drive. From what it sounds like its nice but since its 250GB it probably wont hold it all. This is where the system image I have is as well. My plan is to then move to step 3 in Ataneres famous post 17-18. Is there any concerns about the above then? Good to go?
    PS I am planning on using the recovery partition and leaving the other partitions. THANK YOU!
     
    #30 PcBuilderEd, Aug 15, 2017 at 7:38 AM
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2017 at 7:43 AM
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  11. wizardfromoz

    wizardfromoz Active Member

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    Sounds like it.

    Keep us posted

    Wiz
     
  12. atanere

    atanere Moderator
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    Good luck! Hope it all goes smoothly! :cool:
     

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