I want to change my current hard drive for a bigger one but I do not want to go through the long task of putting on win xp and all my other programs and updating the drivers for the latest ones and then copying over my files etc, so I was hoping that someone could tell me is it possible for me to buy a new hard drive and plug it into my IDE 2 connector, set it to slave and copy/clone my whole current hard drive to it (operating system included) then remove the drive and set it to master and plug it into IDE 1 and away I would go with the new drive?
If I need any software to do this please could you advise what and which one to buy.
The windows XP backup utility will do this for you. First connect your new drive to the secondary IDE interface then partition as a primary and format your new drive drive. Run the windows XP backup utility and create a backup of your whole system. This will create a (.bkf) file. Run the windows XP backup utility again but this time select restore. Choose your (.bkf) file as the one you wish to restore and select NOT to restore to original but restore to your new drive. Once all this is done, remove both drives and connect your new drive to the primary IDE interface. Nearly there. You will now have to use a dos system disk (Win98 will do) with the fdisk command present. Boot with this disk in the floppy drive and use the fdisk command to make the new drive an active partition. Now remove the floppy disk from the drive and that should do it. The system will reboot twice as it will recognise your new hard drive and that should be it. If you wish you can attach your old drive to the secondary interface and reformat this within windows for extra space.
I have used the Western Digital tool recently. I used the Windows version and it is very straight forward, and does not take long to copy everything from one drive to the other. It guide you all the way through, from format to installation and jumper settings.