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I have clone NTFS Partition for how many years, but Ext Partition of Linux not ever since. To those who have experience with this, any comment either bad or good.


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Can someone with higher rep. please edit the question title to: Can ext3 partition be cloned with NortonGhost 11.5? – Milan Babuškov Jun 15 '09 at 11:29
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It should, I never tried Norton Ghost, but acronis true image succeeded to clone an HFS partition This is because both programs read the disk bit-to-bit

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Linux has some tools builtin to do that, no need for NortonGhost.

First Approach:

dd if=/dev/<partition in question> of=/srv/migration/partition.dd # I like to name the files this way
mount -o loop /srv/migration/partition.dd /srv/scratch/partition

Now you can work with the files again. Actually that works regardless of the file system, be it NTFS, HFS, UFS, ext[234], xfs, zfs...

The drawback however is that you will need just as much space as the original partition needed, neither compression is done nor does dd have any knowledge about which blocks are allocated by the filesystem, so dd just grabs the whole partition.

Second Approach:

Another approach may be rsync which allows you to migrate on the fly, afaik it will take care of ACLs given the file system is supported and you use the proper options.

Linux is not Windows - just because you are used to working with Windows tool doesn't mean it is a good way to do it on Linux, as compression goes you could pipe dd thru gzip, bzip2 or some compression tool you like to save some space, you will however looese the ability to loopback mount the image.

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I agree. People are trying to administer Linux with what they learned in the Windows world, but that is often error prone and inefficient way to do it. – Milan Babuškov Jun 15 '09 at 11:30
to save the space, use a data compressor, like bzip2; to speed dd up, add bs option: dd if=/dev/<partition in question> bs=2048k | bzip2 --best >/srv/migration/partition.img.bz2 To extract: bzcat /srv/migration/partition.img.bz2 | dd of=/dev/<partition in question> bs=1024k From my experience, bs shall be a bit smaller than the internal buffer of the device in question for best results – dmityugov Jun 15 '09 at 14:08

The answer to your question is yes, Ghost can deal with ext3 partitions, although it may not be as fast or (if you are taking the image to another computer) as space-efficient as it is with NTFS.

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