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Ran cleanor once, now MS wants me to backup, failing hard drives


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I've tried it twice in Firefox and each time the download has stalled(for an hour) at 3.0 GB of 3.01 GB downloaded.  I tried dl on Chrome but it was exceedingly slow without giving much info on the dl.  I also tried it on Explorer and it stalled at 97% of the download.  My connection is only 1mbps, but firefox only got up to 635kb speed.  Is there another secure download site/server where I can get the ISO image?


I'm surprised they don't offer a split download option for people on slower connections, or a download manager themselves that insures the download will complete without failing.


For such a big download it may be best to download and install a freeware download manager that has resume capabilities. If you go that route make sure it's a download manager that has no adware and no spyware.



I just remembered, Firefox has a download manager add-on called DownThemAll, I don't know how it does on gargantuan sized files though.

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Running chkdsk will take a long time on a 1TB drive, and will put somewhat of a strain on the drive. If you're worried about it, run Acronis first, and see if the condition of the drive has stayed the same or gotten worse. If you're concerned about the drive failing, then don't do it. 


I will look for another way to download the ISO for plan B. It will take me some time. I think if you proceed with the cloning process, and it works, you will have the peace of mind knowing that your operating system, Windows, is off the old drive and safe on the Toshiba. Then you can go back and run chkdsk without worrying about the old drive failing and leaving you stranded. 

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O.K. Brad, I think I found another way to download the ISO a little quicker. I'll send you a P.M. explaining what to do.

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Okay.  Plan B is looking good.  I dl the ISO file by using the new link and the firefox add-on.  I used Rufus to install it on the stick.  This is where I'm unclear on how to test it.  Do you mean for me to reboot and test the iso stick that way?  Or do you just mean for me to run the "Setup.exe" on the stick in windows?  I did that and it seemed to work.  Wanted me to run it and so I pressed the red X to stop it.  Is that what u mean by testing it?


Also, can I put other non-related files on this stick now or should I just get another stick for that?

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O.K. Brad - The purpose of the memory stick is to be able to install Windows 7 from scratch. Using Rufus makes the stick bootable, so you can use it without having an operating system installed on the drive. What you did was start the installer from Windows, but it is really meant to work independently from Windows. What you should do is shut down the machine, boot into BIOS, and change the boot order so you are booting from the USB stick itself, not from your hard drive. If the installer starts, then you have what you need to do a clean install, and you know what to do to kill the install. I only wanted you to have this in case you ran into problems either cloning your operating system to the Toshiba, or from the Toshiba back to the new drive.


Also, do not use that stick for anything else, just hang onto it in case you need it. Get another stick if you need to copy other data. Remember, the process is not over until you have everything from the two Toshibas either cloned or copied to your new hard drive, and you are sure that everything works and none of your data is missing. Do not erase or format your old hard drive, either of the Toshibas, or the USB stick with Windows 7 until you are absolutely sure.  

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Okay.  Plan B is completed and tested.  Thanks everyone.


Plan A question:


Do I need to shrink C partition to allow for the Recovery partition to fit on the external HD?


MBR Disk 1 931.51 GB


1.  RECOVERY (none)  NTFS Primary  5.65 of 8.01 GB

2.  Win7 (C:) NTFS Active 50.60 of 297 GB

3.  Completely blank 75.61 GB  (created when I shrank C:)

4.  DATA (D:) NTFS Primary 252.83 of 550.90 GB

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I think you should shrink C: just a little more, down to 280GB (286720MB). That way recovery plus C: should fit on the Toshiba with a little room to spare. Remember to move recovery first, keeping it at the front of the drive. 


Edit: Taking a break for dinner, I'll check back in 7:30 - 8:00PM to see how things are going.

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Plan A is not working out yet.  I tried cloning the bad drive twice and both times it wouldn't boot past the windows startup screen.  The computer just restarted before the full win logo shows and before I put in my password. 


Oddly, after cloning, the c: drive partition, the used part, is a slightly lesser size than what macrium reads:  c: partition on bad drive 51.69 GB used space, clone drive reads 41.90 GB used space.  I'm fairly certain I did everything according to the macrium instructions.

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All right Brad, don't give up yet. First, go here  http://kb.macrium.com/KnowledgebaseArticle50081.aspx  and reread the instructions and watch the video. Maybe you'll find something you missed or did wrong. Make sure that you are cloning and not imaging the drive. I am concerned about the 10GB of data that appears to be missing, but keep in mind that Macrium copies only your data and ignores things like the paging file and hibernation area on the disk. Any freespace that is mixed in with your data is probably not copied either.


Also, be sure to try different settings in the boot order in BIOS. Remember what I said previously, your BIOS may "see" these as two different kinds of hardware. Your BIOS boot order might have two or more entries for USB devices. The setting that worked for the USB stick might not work for the Toshiba.


If you try everything above, and nothing works, just as an experiment, try cloning just C: partition by itself and see if that boots. I don't like the idea of omitting the recovery partition, but it might be interfering in the boot process.

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but keep in mind that Macrium copies only your data and ignores things like the paging file and hibernation area on the disk. Any freespace that is mixed in with your data is probably not copied either.

When making a Macrium image backup :-

All of that is true only when making an Advanced Options "Intelligent sector copy"

None of that is true when making an Advanced Options "Make an exact copy ..."

N.B. Using "Intelligent sector copy" will allow restoration of the backup to EITHER the original size of the partition you backup,

or to any size down to the absolute minimum that you can shrink the partition after unfixing any the files which may be locked and unmoveable.


When making a Macrium CLONE :-

I would EXPECT it to effectively default to "Make an exact copy ..."

and I CANNOT see any "Advanced Options" that might effectively implement "Intelligent sector CLONE".


Sorry, but "probably" would not work for me :(




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Thanks Alan, your input is appreciated as always, and indirectly, you might have just uncovered the problem . I checked this and found that under the Cloning section, Intelligent Sector Copy and Verify File System are set by default. Forensic Copy (exact copy) is the optional setting and enabled by the user. Unless Brad changed this, the defaults should be in place. Nonetheless, it is worthwhile checking.


Also, under the Compression section, I found Intelligent Sector Copy is enabled by default. HOWEVER, medium compression is the default setting for the compression level and no compression is an option to be chosen by the user. This slipped by me and is probably the real problem here. So Brad, you have to select "Other Tasks", then "Edit Defaults", then "Compression", and select "None"(no compression) before trying another clone. What you have on the Toshiba now is not readable by the system during boot. While you're in there, go to "Cloning" and double check what I mentioned in the first paragraph.

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I checked this and found that under the Cloning section, Intelligent Sector Copy and Verify File System are set by default. Forensic Copy (exact copy) is the optional setting and enabled by the user. Unless Brad changed this, the defaults should be in place. Nonetheless, it is worthwhile checking.

Thanks, I do believe that you have seen this.

That works for me :D


I have not seen this because I do not have a spare HDD to "waste" as a clone,

and I chose to avoid selecting my principle archives internal HDD in-case I accidentally authorised a destructive clone whilst searching for an "Advanced Options"

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That's right Brad. Inelligent/Verify should be set in both the Cloning section and the Compression section. Also, and this is really important, in the Compression section, set Compression to "None" - you do not want to compress your data. I think this is why your first attempt failed. I missed this because I assumed any settings related to Cloning would be in that section and nowhere else, my mistake.

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Hi Derek.  I've tried every option in Macrium to no avail.  I even tried a different freeware cloning program but it wasn't as good as Macrium.  The only thing I haven't tried are the "Advanced Options" in Macrium.  I don't understand those.  Any ideas?

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Hello Brad - Glad to see you're still hanging in there. Sorry to hear things aren't working out for you. I took a look at the Advanced section, on the next attempt you might want to try three things: Exclude VSS writers, Enable file write caching, and Ignore bad sectors.


Before you try the above, I want you to try one thing. Plug in the Toshiba and take a look at the contents of the drive. See if C: and Recovery are actually there. Then click C: and check to see if all your system folders are there. It should look exactly the same as what is on your hard drive. If not, then something went wrong in the cloning process.


Did you try using different settings in BIOS for the boot order? The Toshiba might not be detected as a USB Hard Drive, but as another USB device. Try using anything related to USB, whether it's usb hard drive, usb cd-rom, usb dvd-rom, or simply usb device. Anything mentioning USB.


If all of this fails, I am thinking that it comes down to one of three things: Your BIOS does not recognize the Toshiba as a bootable device, the Toshiba was never designed to be a bootable device, or there is no master boot record installed in the first part of the drive. You won't be able to do anything about the first two items, but you might be able to fix the third. Let me see what I can come up with to check if this is the case and what to do to fix it.


Also, in your next post, give me the model name and/or model number for the Toshiba, and for the Asus motherboard as well. I want to visit their websites to see if I can find anything that will help at this point. Are you beginning to see why I came up with plan B? Sometimes things don't go exactly as you planned, and you have to have a way out.

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The Recovery portion is there and appears as the same GB size.  BIOS is fine.  The Toshiba boots to the Microsoft "Starting Windows" screen with the animated logo but goes no further.(computer restarts before logo animation is fully finished)  The Toshiba does this with the bad hard drive unplugged.  So I would say the Toshiba is bootable.  The Toshiba does this whether or not the Recovery partition was cloned along with C: partition.  I'll try the Advanced Settings u mentioned.

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boots to the Microsoft "Starting Windows" screen with the animated logo but goes no further.(computer restarts before logo animation is fully finished)

If your original System HDD was in perfect health but CONSISTENTLY misfired on startup due to software corruption,

I would expect a perfect clone to behave in exactly the same fashion.


Since your original System HDD was NOT in perfect health,

Were its recent start ups always consistent ?

If not I would expect a perfect clone to consistently start-up with the whatever original HDD problems happened to be captured at the time of cloning.

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Good point Alan. Do you think opening a command prompt and running "sfc /scannow" would reveal any missing system files and fix them? Might be worth trying before attempting another clone. 

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Sorry but I have no relevant and good experience of SFC.

It never worked for me on an old XP Laptop because it insisted upon using installations disks - which were never supplied by Dixons - a store that also sells television sets.


It I think that SFC /Scannow sounds like a reasonable and quick repair option.


Personally I have never used clones.

I always used Images which avoid any danger of the cloned disk powering up and crashing as a result of the presence of two disks with identical Signatures,

Though I think I recently read that Macrium no longer makes a precisely identical clone but tweaks the Disk signature to avoid such problems.


The only chaotic restoration that I experience was when I thought I could "Dual Boot" without using the official techniques.

After a fresh install of Windows 7 on a new to me SSD,

the previous installation remain available on a primary HDD, along with other applications in other partitions.


One day I used the BIOS controls to force booting from the 100 MB partition of the HDD.

instead of the default of booting from the 100 MB partition on the SSD.

I successfully launched the HDD 100 MB boot code,

BUT unfortunately instead of transferring control to the 25 MB partition C:\ on the HDD,

it stumbled into the 55 MB partition C:\ on the SSD.


All I knew at first was that Windows was not working as I expected.

Drive Letter C:\ gave me no clue of what was wrong, but having an extra 30 GB of free space pointed me in the correct direction.


I recognise that for the current problem the Toshiba HDD does not see the bad HDD so that sort of chaos does not apply,

but from my experience I found that the Macrium Recovery CD has options to fix the MBR and any other strange start-up issues when a restoration fails.

It is possible that this might be able to deal with clone failures in addition to restoration failures.





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Hi Brad.
I think that D: partition is or was the recovery partition, built in to allow a system recovery from within the computer.  If it has a bunch of files with extensions like .ini, .sys, or .inf that's what it is. 

If Alan & Derek can't get you fixed, the built in recovery system might still be worth a try. 


If you bought this computer new and made the recovery disks, you maybe can use them to reinstall the OS to a new HDD. 

If you did not make them you may still be able to.  You can only do that once per machine. Long shot, but worth a try. 

If your HDD is failing, you'll have to get another anyway, and those disks will get your computer up and running with a new HDD.


This link tells how to make them (see "Method Two" about half way down), also tells how to use the built in recovery partition if it's still working.  The instructions are for a laptop, but they're worth a try.


Here are 3 other links telling how to access the recovery partition if it is still working. 


Here is a link with a phone number to contact Asus in case you need to buy a set of recovery disks. 


I had a laptop that displayed the disk failing warning for several months.  I just backed up the data and let it go until it failed completely, then had a small local shop put in a new HDD and reinstall win 7.  Cost about $200.00.  Worked out OK, but if it hadn't I would have still had the recovery disks to put it back to square one. 


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Without screen-shots of Windows Disk Management we are flying blind,

but I suggest that any partition other than C:\ (e.g. Recovery partition or D:\ etc.) could be almost as important as C:\


My Acer Windows XP Laptop had many partitions on its solitary HDD.

A partition table accident happened and I had zero partitions - no boot, no nada.


Minitool Partition Wizard Boot Recovery CD fixed things for me.

Initially it allowed me to select all previous partitions, but totally failed to restore any.

By trial and error I found the first 6 partitions could be restored if I abandoned the last one.

I had not used the last partition for a couple of years so was happy to discard it.

I restored all partitions - BUT IT STILL FAILED TO BOOT.


Then I realised that getting an external HDD for Acronis Partition Image backups was the reason I had stopped using the small Acronis "Secure Zone" for that purpose,

BUT it was possibly still involved in the startup of Windows.

I then used Minitool Partition Wizard Boot Recovery CD to "Repair MBR" and avoid dependence upon the absent "Secure Zone" partition,

and then Windows booted o.k.


Hard experience suggests that Windows may stutter and give grief when it cannot find special partitions that appear of little use.

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Had almost the same experience with an Acer.  Fixing MBR fixed the booting issue. 


But, it doesn't appear that Brad has a booting issue, rather a failing HDD.  The HDD is from 2009, not old enough to have worn out yet, but who knows?


And he apparently has his stuff backed up now.  So maybe the next step is to devise a way to get the Factory OS running on a new HDD.


I could be wrong about that, but it is the approach I would take if the computer is worth saving. 

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