Sunday, September 13, 2009

Dual Boot Backup and Restore

One of the first (and my opinion still the best) tools for backing up and restoring a Windows partition on a dual boot Mac (mostly referred to as Boot Camp) is a utility called Winclone.

With this utility you boot into your OSX partition, launch the utility use the SHRINK VOLUME menu tool to make the Windows partition as small as possible then back up the partition your OSX volume or external HD.  You can then reformat, or remove the Boot Camp partition and create a new one of different size.  You can then restore using the utility as well.  One nice feature, is the ability to restore the Windows partition without needing the Winclone software.  This is called the "self extract" feature and is great if you wish to distribute the Windows backup to other computers.  Copy the backup file to the remote computer.  Create the Windows partition, either by remote control and using the Boot Camp Utility or issuing the correct command line commands, then run the following...

/path/to/backup.winclone/winclone.perl -self-extract

There is an excellent PDF at the Winclone site that expands upon this.