(S)Cloning instead of Installing

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Alvin
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(S)Cloning instead of Installing

Post by Alvin »

I have two desktop computers. One had failed, and I bought another used one. I replaced the power supply on the one that failed, and now I have two.
I put the old one in a closet and have been using the newer on, which has a quad CPU; the closeted one has a dual. The newer has Linux Mint 19.1

A few days ago, I decided to put the newer aside, temporarily, and to install LM 21 on the older desktop. I did and am very happy with 21. Thanks to Linux!

Now I would like, if possible, to clone my LM21 system, on which I have newly installed my personal files and applications. Possible problem: The HDD where I want to make the clone is a 500GB. The HDD that I want to take to clone from is only 250GB. Since I am cloning from small to large HDD, could I accomplish that with Foxclone?

If I can clone LM21 onto the LM19 HDD, I would save myself considerable time and effort in installation and setup.

Anyone?
Last edited by Alvin on Sat Oct 01, 2022 10:16 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Cosmo.
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by Cosmo. »

If cloning works reliable depends, what differences the hardware has, especially all, where drivers are possibly needed (graphics, network, ...).

The safer way is to copy your home and install fresh. This takes hardly more time, in case, that the cloned system gives trouble, the newly installed system will safe tremendously time. All user settings are in your home, so you have them at once available.
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gittiest personITW
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by gittiest personITW »

I assume you are trying to copy your settings so they are identical on both computers?

This would depend on the hardware. Probably a couple of major sticking points might be if one has an NVidia graphics card and the other doesn't.
Without any info, no one can recommend whether that is a good idea or not.

Anyway, you could do a brand new install, take a timeshift snapshot of both old and new machines. The old machine snapshot should be onto a removeable drive that you'll then plug into your new computer. Also backup your data, as you would normally and put a copy onto that same removeable drive. Try restoring the snapshot from the old computer onto the new computer. See if you can boot up. If yes, use your backup of all your data/pics/docs etc to put that on the new machine.
Or,
Use Foxclone iso to image your old computer. Restore that image to the new computer. Then you can use GParted to extend the new partition.

If you need more details, post back.
Cosmo.
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by Cosmo. »

gittiest personITW wrote:
Fri Sep 30, 2022 3:53 pm
Try restoring the snapshot from the old computer onto the new computer.
This is the same as cloning, but more circumstantial.
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AndyMH
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by AndyMH »

Alvin wrote:
Fri Sep 30, 2022 3:36 pm
Since I am cloning from small to large HDD, could I accomplish that with Foxclone?
Yes and straightforward, small to large is easy, large to small more difficult.

Simplest way is plug the 500GB HDD into a spare sata slot in your 250GB PC, boot foxclone and do a drive to drive clone. When finished, do not reboot the 250GB PC with the 500GB HDD plugged in - it will confuse BIOS, two identical drives, partitions with the same UUIDs. Plug the 500GB HDD into the other PC and see if it boots.

Things where you might come unstuck:
  • the target PC must boot in the same mode as the source PC, i.e. both legacy or both UEFI.
  • any proprietary 3rd party drivers installed in the source PC, thinking nvidia. Only one way to find out, try it (most of the time should not be a problem).
Assuming your target PC boots okay, then boot it with either foxclone or your mint install stick and use gparted to resize your partition(s) to use all the additional space.

Do not download the foxclone iso from the main site, https://www.foxclone.com/, sorry broken and I've not had time to fix. Use my archive site at https://www.foxclone.org/. Download the user manual as well and read the section on cloning.
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gittiest personITW
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by gittiest personITW »

Cosmo. wrote:
Fri Sep 30, 2022 3:57 pm
gittiest personITW wrote:
Fri Sep 30, 2022 3:53 pm
Try restoring the snapshot from the old computer onto the new computer.
This is the same as cloning, but more circumstantial.
This way the partition doesn't have to be re-sized. As you said, I wouldn't think this was a particularly great thing to do anyway on two different computers with two unknown sets of hardware.
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AndyMH
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by AndyMH »

gittiest personITW wrote:
Fri Sep 30, 2022 4:22 pm
I wouldn't think this was a particularly great thing to do anyway on two different computers with two unknown sets of hardware.
Disagree, most of the time it will work and depending on what you have installed could save you a lot of time setting up your desktop, re-installing and re-configuring all your software. It is worth trying, if it doesn't work then do a fresh install.
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Alvin
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Re: (s)Cloning instead of Installing

Post by Alvin »

Thanks for putting me on guard; also for the helpful suggests how to proceed more safely.
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antikythera
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Re: (s)Cloning instead of Installing

Post by antikythera »

I've done it from Intel to AMD hardware. As long as you haven't got proprietary drivers installed with the opensource ones blacklisted on the source machine it will definitely work regardless of the target hardware providing the destination drive size is identical or larger.
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gittiest personITW
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Re: (s)Cloning instead of Installing

Post by gittiest personITW »

Ok, just to add, timewise, when resizing the your system drive, it can take a good few hours (overnight).
So, whatever you choose to do and depending on your time considerations etc,

Let us know how it goes and your system hardware specs on both systems would be good as that would help someone with similar hardware to decide whether or not to go the way you've tried.
Alvin
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by Alvin »

A bit of a maverick, I decided - against good advice, to try cloning instead of a second fresh installation using backup and timeshift. My daring was prompted my knowledge that both my computers were low end models for their time, one an HP Elite 8300, the other a Dell Inspiron 660s. Neither, to my knowledge has other than motherboard video or other circuits that would clearly make each unique and require its own installation.

Fortunately, so far, so good. I am using the cloned LM21 on the second computer. When I finished cloning the HDD, I used gparted to extend the partition from the small one of the originally small, 250 HDD drive to the full HDD space available on the 500GM. I did all these things with a dry throat, you may be sure.

No problems yet, and if all remains well I'm done. LM19.1 has served me well ! Thanks to Linux! Long live (5 years?) LM21 !

Thanks to to LMF and the respondents to my posting. I leave it open for a few days; then, mark it solved.
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AndyMH
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by AndyMH »

There you go, some of us said it would work :D

If you are using both PCs on the same LAN you might consider changing the hostname on the second PC. Here's how:
viewtopic.php?p=1808033#p1808033

Did you use foxclone?
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Alvin
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Re: Cloning instead of Installing

Post by Alvin »

No LAN is involved.

I used a Foxclone ISO I made from their download when I used LM 19.1.

Thanks!
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Re: (S)Cloning instead of Installing

Post by gittiest personITW »

Nice one. Well done.
Glad it worked out.
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