Using Super Duper to clone then restore an HDD

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by zen, May 16, 2009.

  1. zen macrumors 68000


    Jun 26, 2003
    Before I destroy my computer totally and lose everything, I just want to check I've got the right process:

    I want to clone my iMac's internal HDD to an external one, erase the internal one, then restore the clone to it (to solve a Bootcamp partition error).

    So in Super Duper, do I want to cope the HDD to a disk image, or to the external HDD?

    As I understand it, when I have my back-up ready on my external, I need to reboot with the Leopard installer, open Disk Utility, select Restore, choose the source Disk Image (on my external HDD), then select the internal as the destination.

    Which will put everything back where it was, fully functional, only now I've got a nice defragmented/optimised system.

    Have I got that right?
  2. aaronw1986 macrumors 68030

    Oct 31, 2006
    It will be just as fragmented.
  3. zen thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jun 26, 2003
    Erm, but that's Apple's own support instruction on how to optimise a disk?
  4. dolphin842 macrumors 65816

    Jul 14, 2004
    The process is actually even easier:

    1) Clone internal drive to external drive (don't copy to a disk image or anything like that)

    2) Verify that the backup works by booting from the external (hold down the Option key after the startup chime, and select the external drive)

    3) After verifying that the backup drive boots, run SuperDuper and perform an "Erase [internal], then Copy from [external]" operation. There's no need to boot from the installer CD and get Disk Utility involved.
  5. zen thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jun 26, 2003
    Does that require a Firewire external drive in Leopard? My external is USB2.
  6. dolphin842 macrumors 65816

    Jul 14, 2004
    Intel Macs introduced the ability to boot from USB as well as FireWire. Judging from the Macs in your signature, you should be good to go. As always, be sure to try out your backup before deleting the internal drive :cool:.
  7. zen thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jun 26, 2003
    Hmm, lemme get this straight. Am I going the right way about it?

    My iMac's HDD is fragged right down to the spindle (it had a lot of use, been filled with data to max capacity then cleared multiple time), so I can't create a Boot Camp partition.

    Cloning the drive block-for-block would just copy the exact same block structure, wouldn't it, which means the backed-up drive would be just a fragged, and then restoring it to main drive will just repeat the process and nothing will be changed.

    But creating a bootable back up with SuperDuper will rewrite the data, optimising it as it copies? I'm sure there is a thread on here about that, but I can't find it.

    Basically I want to optimise my internal HDD without forking out for iDefrag, as Apple suggests the best way is to back-up the internal then wipe it, and iDefrag has mixed reviews and is expensive for what it does.

    Edit: Oops, found the threads. Yes, this will work :D
  8. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Skip the cloning; just run iDefrag or something; it's not free, but it actually defrags your computer oppose to just copying over block-by-block which does nothing for you.

    You can also restore from Time Machine if you're running 10.5 (Leopard); basically boot onto the restore DVD and choose 'Restore from Time Machine' from the top menu bar under Utilities. Mind you, this method requires that you deactivate software like CS4 and the like if you have them.

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