Is there some program for windows that is able to do what dd does in linux out of the box? I need to copy from a file to a physical disk in raw mode where I need to define offsets for input and output. So for dd, I'd need to use the seek and skip parameters. I know there is (1) http://www.chrysocome.net/dd or I could try to (2) setup dd using cygwin but:

  1. Does multiply the skip parameter with 512 (which I believe is wrong). I want to skip=4198399 sectors but it then tries to skip 2149580288 sectors (bs=512). So with this bug, the program is useless for me.
  2. I tried to use dd under cygwin as partially decribed here: http://cygwin.com/ml/cygwin/2000-08/msg00885.html. I did this

    mount -f //./physicaldrive0 /dev/enc
    mount -f of=/dev/enc if=/cygdrive/f/inputfile.dat skip=4198399 seek=4209089

and got

dd: opening '/dev/enc': Invalid argument"


    mount -f //./Device/Harddisk0/DR0 /dev/enc

resulted in

     dd: opening '/dev/enc': No such file or directory"

So I am tired of trying with cygwin.

Are there other programs/options that could accomplish a dd kind of raw copy (maybe some disk editor)?


  • Forgot to mention: The sector counts that need to be skipped do not define partition borders. So tools that rely on them are useless here.... – user462982 Oct 23 '11 at 19:16

Use a LiveLinux CD of your choice (e.g. Knoppix). Boot from it and do the dd from there. Everything else is just a hack if you depend on dd.

Otherwise you can choose any imaging tool for Windows (e.g. Ghost, Acronis True Image).

  • Well, if I wanted to use linux, I would. But it should work with Windows. That is why I asked here... All imaging tools I know (including Ghost and Acronis) do not support offsets as far as I know. – user462982 Oct 23 '11 at 19:12
  • @user462982 I hope you are not trying to image your running system. This neither works with Windows nor with Linux. – mailq Oct 23 '11 at 19:22
  • Nope, I just try to restore the exact partition setup of my 2nd HDD that existed before doing a backup and recover from it. Although I made a raw sector by sector image, the backup tool used for this task (Acronis) did some "optimizations" and moved the partition boundaries. This interferes with the drive encryption used, which I believe uses the sector count as some kind of salt. – user462982 Oct 23 '11 at 21:12
  • Seems like the dd tool included in this package (gmgsystemsinc.com/fau) is a good windows implemenation of dd. Will get back if I incur any problems. – user462982 Oct 23 '11 at 22:46

With VirtualBox, you can use VBoxManage clonehd, converfromraw and storageattach, depending on what's suitable.

To automate, you can use simple shell provisioning in Vagrant or, better yet, write a template with Packer. Installing these on Windows is a breeze with Chocolatey.

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