*Kangaroo's Harddrive Clone Kit*
I am ALWAYS worried about my main PC's Hard Drive crashing (It's happened to us all, at least once, I'm sure), so rather than worry, I decided to do something about it.
Last week I bought Kangaroo's "Easy Migrate clone" system (Link at end of Article).
It seems to me (and everyone, I guess) That about the time you get your computer "Just like you like it", You have a crash, or other Harddrive problems, and have to reinstall everything... and if you're lucky you have backed up your important files and didn't lose anything important.. still it's aggravating as hell. I have to say this hasn't happened since I started running "Windows 2000 Pro" on all our machines here at the house some years ago, but I got this feeling that I was "about due", so being a typical survivalist I wanted to head off any trouble BEFORE there was trouble.
I cleaned up the Main Harddrive on my Main PC today and got it nice and clean and updated from Microsoft-update and de-virused (Norton) and de-bugged and de-spywared (Spybot and Ad-Aware), and de-everything-elsed, etc...
I got brave about 30 minutes ago and decided to clone the main 100GB Harddrive onto the new Kangaroo 200GB Harddrive (It clones through adapters through your USB port)
Supposedly when it's done my 100GB HD will be duplicated EXACTLY on a 200 GB Harddrive which I can put in into the safe for safekeeping in case of a main Harddrive crash... I'll let you follow along with me, so if this article doesn't get done, well, we know it didn't work ;)
So Far it's been TOO easy... If this continues and works right, I may just start cloning my HD's once a week rather that those pitiful "backups" where you have to reinstall your OS and all your programs after a crash (All you're really backing up is your files during a "normal" "Back-up")... We'll see I guess...
OK, Back up and running.. it took under 30 minutes to completely clone an exact duplicate of my main 100GB Harddrive to a 200 GB Harddrive through one of my USB ports...
The main Harddrive is exactly as it was, and the cloned Harddrive will boot up EXACTLY the same as the old Harddrive (Just has a LOT more free space on it since it's much Larger)... I tested the new drive, and it booted up fine and looks just like my main drive, just bigger.
I put the New Cloned Harddrive in the fire-safe.
Looks like from now on about once a week I'll just clone my main Harddrive as an "Exact backup" onto the 200GB HD and then store away the backup.. that makes me feel MUCH MUCH better knowing If my main drive dies I can just swap it out without losing anything, or having to do a complete re-install and hunt down programs and such (Even if you save all your install programs, you always seem to have to have hunt a few) :)
The hardware and software is simple to use and install (USB port and one program called "Easy Migrate"). You can use your own (any) IDE Harddrive to clone any Harddrive on any machine, but I got the 200GB drive that came with one of the Kangaroo packages...
I don't think it works on Linux/Unix, but it works on all versions of Windows and Windows NTFS.
Basically you just install the micro-disk ("Easy Migrate") onto your existing Harddrive.
Then there is a little adapter box with a USB cord AND an IDE plugged box. You simply Plug the new Harddrive into the IDE portion of the little box and add the power cord, then plug the USB connector into one of your main computer's USB ports... through the whole process you don't even have to open the Case to your computer.
Then you start "Easy Migrate" and it asks you a few questions (My Answers were basically, "I just want to make an exact clone of my current drive onto the new drive")..
Then it reboots your system and before ANYTHING loads during reboot, it clones your main drive EXACTLY... when it's done you just disconnect it all and reboot your computer... Done.. put the new cloned drive someplace safe.
Cloing is better than "Backing up" your drives...
If you just copy all your files over to another drive, Or use "Microsoft backup", then the new drive doesn't boot after a crash and your programs all have to be reinstalled, etc.. so all you are REALLY doing is saving is your files when you do a normal "Backup"...
With this clone system, you have an exact duplicate (bootable and all) of your old system... if the old drive dies, just plug in the new Cloned drive and you have your exact old system back in minutes.
There are several kangaroo "Packages" to choose from... the price difference just depends on which drive you buy with the package. They start out at $119 for an 80 Gig drive, and run upward to $230.00 for a 250Gig drive. I got the "200 Gig drive" package.
The really useful part is the little box with USB cable and IDE plug and power cord and software Micro-CD.. You can just add your own IDE Harddrive if you have one already.
I'm really impressed with this system and it makes me feel MUCH better knowing I will no longer lose ANYTHING if my Main Drive crashes.
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