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How I Cloned my Laptop Hard Drive or Skirting the Dreaded Hard Drive Kerklunk

Recently, my laptop hard drive started emitting the dreaded, "kerklunk, rriiipppphphhhh" noise. Oh yes, you've awoken in a sweat with this nightmare, haven't you? It's a sure sign of a failed drive coming down the pike. Incoming!

Rather than suffering the life-shattering disruption of an unrecoverable drive, I called a Code Blue...and here's what I did:

Background: I have Win7 64-bit running on a Dell Latitude D830 with a bay-mounted SATA external 500GB drive and an external USB 500GB drive.
  1. Download Paragon Backup & Recovery Free Edition; install
  2. Use Paragon B&R to create a full backup of my existing hard drive (including MBR/Master Boot Record) onto my external USB drive (about 1/2 the size of my total hard drive)
  3. Use Paradon B&R to restore from the external USB drive to the external bay drive
  4. Shut down Windows7
  5. Swap primary hard drive with external bay drive
  6. Start up Windows7
  7. Order new hard drive to replace old, busted, Kerklunk drive...

Unbelievably, that's it. Everything (including Windows Activation) just worked. I will shout to the hills about the awesome-ness of Paragon's tools. Yea Paragon. Seriously. Booyah.

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