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Clone an existing OS X installation Apps
Since we seem to be on the subject of backups today (see the story below this one), I thought this would be a good time to mention Carbon Copy Cloner, a $5.00 donationware (uncrippled shareware) AppleScript Studio project written by Mike Bombich. I've actually used this several times in the last few months, and kept meaning to write something up about it. Carbon Copy Cloner creates clones of one OS X installation onto other drives. This can be very useful not only for full backups, but also for creating identical mass installations of OS X (as in a lab environment, which is what drove Mike to create the program)

Carbon Copy Cloner uses AppleScript Studio to put an easy to use interface in front of AppleScript. When you launch the program, you choose source and destination disks with pop-up menus, specify which (if any) folders you do not want cloned, decide whether or not to recreate Darwin links and bless the system folder, and then simply hit the "Clone" button. Carbon Copy Cloner then proceeds to create a fully bootable copy of your existing installation.

Carbon Copy Cloner's focus is in cloning an entire drive; it's not targeted at programs like Retrospect that let you create backup sets, incremental backups, etc. But if you just want the security of knowing you have a full bootable backup of your existing installation, or you need to install a customized OS X folder on 100 hard drives, it's a near perfect tool for the job.
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Clone an existing OS X installation | 21 comments | Create New Account
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If only
Authored by: baba on Apr 23, '02 12:39:59PM

If anyone manages to get this to work cloning to a firewire drive, please post. I always get either a fatal openlistfolder error or a "successful" clone that's about %30 of the original.



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If only
Authored by: swgs on Apr 23, '02 02:51:14PM

i've done it. many times. here at work we tested it out going from internal drive to firewire, then from firewire to firewire, then from firewire to another internal mac hard drive. Each time we did it we were able to boot from the copy. it was quite cool. as for how we did it? im not quite sure, we used Carbon Copy Cloner, and we didnt have to do anything tricky, just out of sheer paranoia we only had the Finder and Carbon Copy Cloner running.

SWGS



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Worked Fine for me...
Authored by: chvid on May 16, '02 11:45:33PM

Imac G3 500 with External Maxtor Firewire 80. A look at my original startup disk with Disk Utility revealed it was a bit corrupt, so booting from the Firewire drive let me fix it. So now I can sleep soundly knowing my weeks of customizing X are not at risk. Awesome.



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If only
Authored by: bluehz on Apr 23, '02 03:22:55PM

I try every version of this that comes out and also have never had any luck. Always craps out and rarely tells me why - often I will just come back and the app has disappeared. Everyone seems to have such luck with this - but I can't depend on it enough and I don't have time to babysit it.

NOTE - I am not knocking the developer at all...he makes some fantastic stuff and above all offers some FANTASTIC advice I use on a dailt basis at his web site. I have just never been able to get this one item to work reliably.



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If only - Me Too
Authored by: mnewman on Apr 23, '02 05:59:54PM

I also have been unable to get Carbon Copy Cloner to produce a bootable volume on an external FireWire drive. In this case I'm trying to clone the single volume on my iBook which has about 7GB to an external FireWire drive that has two partitions. The external drive is brand new and the partitions were created with the OS/X disk utility. The target volume is 10GB.

Carbon Copy Cloner seemed to be doing its work, but since the process looked like it was going to take an hour or so, I went out for a run. When I got back, the copy process seemed to be finished, but there was a dialog box informing me that I had entered an incorrect password. The only password I entered was the Administrative password asked for at the beginning of the process. It seemed to have been accepted at that time. I have no idea where this dialog box came from.

I dismissed the dialog and CCC reported that it was "blessing" the target volume. In the middle of this CCC unexpectedly quit. (I sent the Console log file to the author.)

I went to the startup pane of the preferences panel and sure enough, both the OS/9 and OS/X folders showed up as possible startup folders. I picked the cloned OS/X folder and restarted the machine. No joy.

I removed the FireWire drive and restarted from the internal volume and this worked.

Examining the cloned drive indicates that everything was copied, but it will not boot.

If you look at the CCC site you will see that bug reports include similar problems with this piece of software. It seems to work for many, but not for some. The reasons for failure remain unclear.



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If only - Me Too
Authored by: mnewman on Apr 24, '02 02:47:54PM

Based on my bug report and bug reports from others the author of Carbon Copy Cloner has rewritten some routines. The latest beta worked for me and produced a bootable clone on an external FireWire volume. I'm sure that when more reports on in the author will release and updated version. In addition to fixing the boot problem, the beta version loads faster and the process of deleting items from the "to be copied" list has been improved (faster, selection of multiple items enabled).



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If only..failed
Authored by: jeremy on Apr 25, '02 11:17:38AM

I tried cc to copy to my firewire drive, the first time it tried and failed, the 2nd to 6th time the app crashed as soon as the first volume was selected!
10.1.4 with all current updates...changed direction, decided to install new systemX , XDarwin & gimp and had it up and running in about the same time I'd spent downloading and setting up the firewire drive to copy!
It's my birthday and I'll do what I want!
Thanks for the app anyway, I'll give it another try next week when I get bored with XDarwin



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If only
Authored by: impromp101 on Apr 23, '02 04:48:32PM

I have used Carbon Copy Cloner. When cloning the whole drive partition, I too get a similar error. But it basically says it can't find the file. However, it hasn't prevented me from creating a working boot partition. I haven't checked file numbers, but overall size seems intact. My copy goals are 1) boot system (successful) and copy of my user area (seems intact). Everything else I can reinstall if necessary (apps, etc.)

As an aside, Mike Bombitch mentions that you might get some errors that don't seem to effect the copy.

It's worth more than just $5.



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If only
Authored by: alancookie on Apr 23, '02 06:11:51PM

I have used it several times to not only clone to a FW disk but to another laptop (for use in our computer lab)...I also had many problems and was unsuccessful until I read somewhere that the trick was to first use erase drive in Disk Utility (located in the Utilities Folder inside the Applications Folder in OS X) to format the target drive first and be sure to check the "install OS 9 drivers"...and then use Carbon Copy Cloner to copy the drive. Hope this helps...



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No Probs here
Authored by: wuf810 on Apr 23, '02 07:18:57PM

I've been using CCC for a while with no problems at all. Backups or clones have always been to La Cie Pocket drives using Firewire. I can only guess that the problems mentioned above may be something to do with the drive itself - I always do a fall erase of the backup drive before starting which may help.

As an aside, I had 7 new iMacs to setup at my company. I did one completely including classic and Native apps such as Office etc, then used CCC to backup to a firewire drive. Then using the Apple, Ctrl, Option "bypass" key combination I was able to boot the other iMacs from the firewire drive and cloned the copy onto them one at a time. Saved days of setup time.



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CCC works everytime to Firewire for me
Authored by: BruceM. on Apr 23, '02 08:45:07PM

]?d OSX to firewire (VST Thin) at least six times and made bootable mirrors everytime. Cloned also to Powerbook expansion bay hard drives several times, always successful. I always run DW2.1, TTP3.0.6 and SpeedDisk on the OSX system 1st, always clone to a partition, erase the partition with disk utility first, check all CCC options and delete any TTP protection files before cloning. I also shut down all apps except finder and don't attempt any other activities during clone (about 10 minutes).



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CCC works everytime to Firewire for me
Authored by: batmanspiderman on Apr 23, '02 09:30:04PM

i am new to OSX. Why can't you just drag/drop the contents of the drive to another drive. Wouldn't this make an exact copy?



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Invisibles and permissions...
Authored by: robg on Apr 24, '02 12:38:05AM

In short, invisible files and those for which your normal user doesn't have permissions will make drag and drop a no-go in OS X.

-rob.



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CCC works everytime to Firewire for me
Authored by: gregmyers on Apr 23, '02 10:27:50PM

Works fine for me too. I have copied my iBook drive to three other drives with no problems. I have used it to get OSX on some old iMacs I have that have non-bootable replacement CD drives.



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CCC works until tonite!
Authored by: BruceM. on Apr 27, '02 04:56:16AM

I had my 1st CCC failure cloning an OS9 volume last night where the process halted at 70% completion with an error message. The file that locked up the clone was an invisible Norton File Saver file.
After deleteing it (and TTP Protection files which I always skip), I reformatted the partition with Disk Utility and successfully made a bootable clone with the second attempt. I wonder if some of these non-native system OSX/OS9 invisible files might contribute to failed/errored clones others have experienced. Has anyone seen a similiar pattern of hangs with non-apple files causing the failures? Also, my 10.1.3 system is only 1.8GB size, do hangs frequency increase with larger systems getting cloned?



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If I can do it
Authored by: Waterman1 on Apr 25, '02 01:07:38AM

Anybody should be able to do it.
I'm using the clone right now. This guy is getting his 5 bucks. I did check and partition( for my Fink install) the disk, took less than ten minutes.



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Disk Image
Authored by: Ezra Balaraj on Apr 24, '02 10:25:27AM

Is there a way to use CCC to make the "clone" in a Disk Image
which could then be burned onto a CD?

I have tried several times w/o success, perhaps this is because I'm
using a G3 MT with a processor upgrade (266 to 433 mhz)



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Getting it to work with DVD
Authored by: swank on Apr 24, '02 11:05:39AM

Here's what I did:

1.On an empty drive, I made a 4GB partition.
2.Followed all the CCC intstructions and cloned my start up volume. It worked. I could start up from the 4GB partition and everything seemed to be ok.
3.I booted back to my normal start-up volume and started Toast.
4.In Toast I seleceted 'Mac volume' and chose the 4GB cloned partition with 'Optimize-on-the-fly' Un-checked & bootable checked.
5. Afeter burning (RW) the resulting DVD would not boot. ;[

Is Toast the problem? I tried using DiskCopy, but the way it uses those low-level system id numbers for the different partitions, I couldn't tell what was what...



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Getting it to work with DVD
Authored by: bombich on Apr 24, '02 01:15:54PM
Much of the startup process relies on the ability to write to the startup disk, which you cannot do if you're booting from read-only media such as a CD or DVD. I've written some instructions that will point you in the right direction towards creating a bootable CD. Let me warn you now, though: its is not an easy task and it certainly isn't as straightforward as a Mac OS 9 boot disk. Your method will give you a complete backup, though, which is nothing to shake a stick at...

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Getting it to work with DVD-update
Authored by: swank on Apr 25, '02 07:45:23AM

I decided to verify if the DVD i made from toast was indeed nothing to shake a stick at... SO I wiped the 4GB partition and used CCC to clone the DVD back to it.

It Worked! Everything seems to be working fine...

thanks to all above!



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Another CCC success
Authored by: echo on May 03, '02 04:08:06AM

Using CCC, I just successfully cloned my OS X setup to a VST external FW drive, freshly initialized and partitioned with Disk Utility. I then booted from an OS X 10.1 install CD, re-partitioned my internal HD, booted from the clone, and re-cloned to the internal HD. It went flawlessly, and I was so thrilled, I went running over to Mike's site to give him $.

One note: Starting up from the clone on the FW disk (restart with option key), after being booted from the internal HD, always got a broken folder icon at first, but waiting longer always found the bootable system. Going from booted from the CD to the clone did startup quicker and normally.

I also couldn't use Disk Utility on the FW clone to partition my internal HD, getting a message that the disk was in use, although I had done the same to the FW from the internal. I felt better about doing it from the CD anyway, but that surprised me.

Thanks Mike!



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