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I need to create a disk image from a Windows 2000, NTFS formatted, hard drive. This image has to be used to create backup hard drives to replace the original disk in case an emergency situation arises. This is a medical equipment, so I cannot physically disconnect the disk because I would violate the warranty of the equipment. This machine has a DVD R/W, ethernet and USB 2.0 access, and we have the rights to install any application I want in the Windows 2000 system.

1) Is there any way to do this without installing any new software in the Windows 2000 system, so it is the least invasive as possible?

2) If we have to install a software to do the backup, which software do you recommend?

Any hint will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance,


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up vote 2 down vote accepted

There are free, clever ways of doing this but I imagine you want something that's just easy and works right?

If so just buy any cheapo USB disk and a copy of Norton Ghost - it comes with a boot disk that means you'll be able to get a quieced full disk copy without installing any software. Like I say, costs a bit but it's stupidly simple.

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Clonezilla is available as a LiveCD which can copy to an external hard drive; if you can PXE boot the machine, you can install either Clonezilla as a server or something like FOG to manage imaging with a nice web interface. FOG also has a client-side service which lets you remotely install software, printers, track user logins etc.

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