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Thread: Migrating to WD advanced format drive

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    Migrating to WD advanced format drive

    Just bought a new Wester Digital 15EARS hard disk to migrate data from my old disk to this one. Basically I am trying to migrate two NTFS, one Ext3 and one EXt4 partition from my old disk to this one. However, thanks to the advanced formatting and the 4k blocks, GParted is not able to transfer the data to this new drive. Has anyone had any experience of migrating data to this drive and if so, which tool is best for the job? I don't mind if the utility runs under either Windows or Linux but the only caveat is that it should be able to transfer both Windows and Linux partitions.

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    Re: Migrating to WD advanced format drive

    You might be able to use the linux dd command as that is a block transfer application. You need to read the documentation carefully

    http://ss64.com/bash/dd.html

    While the basic command

    dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb

    might work (as it is operating at a byte level) you might have to specify the input block size (ibws) as 512 and the output block size (obs) as 4096 - but you may have to experiment a bit. I'd start off with tyhe vanilla command to start with.

    Edit:

    Just found this article

    http://hothardware.com/Articles/WDs-...Pay-Attention/

    Looks as if the internal structure is effectively hidden from the user interface, so I think the plain dd command (without specifying block sizes) would be the way to go - although I am a little mystified as to why GPARTED fails.
    Last edited by peterb; 08-03-2010 at 03:20 PM.
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    Re: Migrating to WD advanced format drive

    you should be able to use image for linux to be able to do this task.

    image for (windows,dos or linux) should be able to do that for you

    http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/image-for-linux.htm
    http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/image-for-windows.htm
    http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/image-for-dos.htm

    image for dos and image for linux are boot discs running under the environment in the name.
    image for windows is a program to be installed under windows for imaging and cloning harddrives and partitions.

    I am not associated with Terabyte Unlimited Im simply a very happy customer.

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    Re: Migrating to WD advanced format drive

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    Looks as if the internal structure is effectively hidden from the user interface, so I think the plain dd command (without specifying block sizes) would be the way to go - although I am a little mystified as to why GPARTED fails.
    Na,tried that and it didn't work. Found something on fdisk here which seems to suggest that the issues hasn't exactly been bottomed out yet but people have found a work around. The new version of Gparted, released on 9th march, includes the latest version of parted which applied the work around and seems to work now. The reason why dd doesn't work is because the drive doesn't report its block size and thus according to ATAPI specs, dd assume 512 bytes. But actually the drive has 4096 bytes block size, which means that dd is not able to copy the data.
    Last edited by arbitrabbit; 13-03-2010 at 12:24 AM.

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    Re: Migrating to WD advanced format drive

    So the dd command might work if you specified -bs 4096.

    However the reason I have resurrected the post is that I came across the problem myself, adding an Western Digital EARS drive to an mdadm RAID1 array, where the current drive is a WD EADS conventionally formatted drive.

    The partition tables should ideally be identical, and I copied that over from the existing drive to the new one without any (obvious) problems - however when the array was rebuilding, it crawled to a halt and then started throwing up errors.

    There is some information in the links below but it seems that the issue hasn't been fully resolved yet:

    http://community.wdc.com/t5/Desktop/...EARS/td-p/6395 (also referenced in the previous post)

    http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.linux....-linux-ng/2926

    It may be possible to use the jumper settings to make it appear like a conventional drive, (recommended for Win2K/XP installations) but that is something I need to play with first. (Or wait until people much cleverer than me have come up with a solution! )

    To be fair I think part of the problem I experienced is trying to mix and match two drives with different characteristics in an array, but until the issue is fully resolved, I' think I'd avoid using an advanced format drive for anything other than a plain Vista or Win7 installation.

    Meanwhile, as the drive is required on a production system, I'll be looking at a Samsung drive.
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    Re: Migrating to WD advanced format drive

    Yeah, ran into similar issues myself but then threw it into the Synology NAS with the 2.3 firmware and the drive works without a hitch there in a mixed disk ennvironment. Given the NAS runs Linux, I wonder how they are resolving the issue

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    Re: Migrating to WD advanced format drive

    I think one of the problems is ensuring that the partitions lie on 4096 boundaries - if you can do that it solves the problem. The other problem is that the disk manipulation tools (fdsk, parted etc don't interpret the formatting (yet) so the boundaries have to be clculated by hand. Maybe synology have updated the tools in their distro.
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