Restore Boot Camp Image to SSD with WinClone

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by ssn637, May 23, 2010.

  1. ssn637 macrumors 6502

    Feb 12, 2009
    I've got Windows 7 x64 Ultimate installed on my Crucial C300 SSD in the OptiBay drive and have backed up the image using WinClone prior to updating the SSD firmware. When checking the WinClone forums I noted that users have reported they were unable to restore their Boot Camp images to an SSD via WinClone. Some have even bricked their drives and have had to have them replaced.
    Has anyone had success with the latest version or should I avoid restoring my WinClone image and perform a clean installation from scratch?
  2. alder0 macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2010
    maybe too long, but it solves your problem

    This post may not be relevant for those primarily working in a Mac environment for which Windows requires only an occasional visit; but for those, such as myself, who only bought a MacPro for hardware and almost exclusively use Windows, a "primitive" backup and bare metal restore utility such as Winclone doesn't measure up.

    Within the Windows environment, there is one "enterprise" level utility that meets all the need of those using multiple operating systems, including virtual machines, and that utility is called ShadowProtect, produced by StorageCraft ( don't have any connection to this company, by the way, I just researched like crazy to find a backup utility for my Bootcamp machine.

    While rather expensive (~$100/yr), this utility is the best Windows backup program I have seen--Microsoft Gold & integrated with VM ware.

    Since I couldn't find anything on the internet laying out the details of doing a bare metal restore with ShadowProtect in the Bootcamp environment, I thought it would be useful to document how to accomplish such a restore.

    1) Within Windows do a backup using ShadowProtect to create an image file.
    2) When the time comes to do a "bare metal restore", from within OS-X use bootcamp assistant to format for windows and exit; reboot from the ShadowProtect W7 boot disk.
    3) Use Windows disk manager to reformat the windows partition--not the drive--into NTFS, and set the partition active. This destroys the empty FAT32 shell created by OS-X and leaves a partition map and MBR that can be used by Windows. I guess this is the reason it's so hard to repartition a Bootcamp disk, since the partition map has to be understood both by OS-X and by Windows.
    4) Now use ShadowProtect to restore the system drive image using the default parameters which don't touch the MBR, hidden tracks or disk signatures unless you have special requirements--in which case you should research these on the StorageCraft site. ShadowProtect will precisely reproduce the Bootcamp drive, but with the partition boot information tailored to your new OS by Windows. When I did a conversion from my system disk on a hard drive to one on an SSD, it took about 15 minutes to create the backup image on another drive and less than 10 minutes to load it on the SSD. I then rebooted to an unchanged W7 running at incredible speeds on the SSD.
  3. lucifiel macrumors 6502a


    Nov 7, 2009
    In your basement
    I'm not entirely sure why "winclone" is primitive if it simply cuts out the entire Windows partition and puts it back. I of course do not profess to know how it works, so I will leave it at that.

    Anyways, I have an ssd in my MBA and I've used Winclone several times, especially when I got infected with something annoying in Win 7 and it takes about 1 hour or so to get everything up and running again.

    I don't think winclone malfunctions with SSDs per se, it might be that brand of SSD, but as far as I know, there are no issues with my SSD and WinClone.
  4. ssn637 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 12, 2009
    Well, someone on the WinClone forums claimed he ruined his SSD trying to restore a WinClone image, so I haven't had the heart to try it myself.

    I went ahead and purchased StorageCraft's ShadowProtect (thanks for the tip!) and will give it a try. Since my MacBook Pro is also my work machine, I need to have a reliable Windows 7 system complete with the MS Office Suite and can't afford to lose a day or two with reinstalls if anything should go wrong. Luckily, with my configuration all the necessary documents are stored on the Mac OS X hard drive, so a reinstallation of the SSD only includes the operating system and essential programs. But I agree that backup & restore capability is essential for our main systems.
  5. ssn637 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 12, 2009
    Well, I've tried to restore my Windows 7 x64 image with ShadowProtect and have failed on three separate attempts.
    - The first attempt was following a backup to my Mac OS X HDD from the Windows 7 SSD to take advantage of the high data transfer rate, but the boot disk didn't recognize the HFS drive and thus I didn't have the option to restore from that image.
    - I then copied the image to a USB HDD (NTFS format) and tried again, but the restore failed within seconds so I was forced to perform another clean installation of Windows. Following this clean installation I again created a backup image directly to the USB NTFS HDD.
    - The third attempt from the newly-created image on the USB HDD also failed within seconds.

    This is kind of frustrating, since I used to perform restorations on my Windows laptop using Norton Ghost all the time without incident.
  6. balamw Moderator


    Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2005
    New England
  7. ssn637 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Feb 12, 2009
    Thanks for the tip!

    Kind of embarrassing...I swapped to another USB Hard Drive and tried again.
    The backup image was verified on the new external drive (the other image failed due to a CRC mismatch) and I was able to perform a restore without incident. :eek: Should have thought of that...

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