Good, now that the DISK/PART confusion is over (thanks BTW):http://reboot.pro/to...memgr/?p=203207
I guess it is time to check the actual (other, not mentioned till now) issues, please understand how the following may be some mistake on my part (i.e. I missed something that is already in the Clonedisk or followed a procedure that is different from the "intended" standard) honestly I never had these issues before, but my use of clonedisk had not been before anything but "occasional".
Platform Windows 7 SP1.
1) I can backup a MBR fine (in Advanced->Master Boot Record), but seemingly it doesn't allow me to restore one (worked around by pretending to restore to Physicaldriven (Disk) from RAW image providing the backed up MBR file, 512 bytes in size.
2) In Advanced, on the Master Boot Record page, if one presses the ... (three dots) button next to each partition entry it opens the Boot Sector tab (good
) that unlike the Master Boot Record one, allows not to edit anything, it is just a viewer of the BPB data, it would be nice if also this tab allowed editing (something that I often happen to change is geometry, i.e. the fields SecPerTrack and Heads, because of wrking with different BIOSes and particularly small partition/hard disk images)
3) While you are at it, in both the Master Boot Record and in the Boot Sector pages there is the possibility to change the "Boot Code", while in MBR there are three options (NT6, G4D and "Any") in the Boot Sector page there is only "NT6", adding here a "Any" would be IMHO a nice improvement BUT it is IMHO not
acceptable that you call "NT6" what later (in the confirmation popup) is revealed being the Windows 8.1 boot code
Another issue (this time tested on Windows XP SP2) there is (still) the stupid error with the (internal USB) card reader(s), those stupid devices that in Windows get a drive letter even if there is no media inserted: every other operation with Clonedisk it evidently attempts to re-enumerate devices and each time I have 4 (four) popups (and beeps) and I have to click four times on "continue".
There is a (minor, still ....) issue in the logic of the "Backup to image" (nothing to worry about, only IMHO unnerving), if you select a Disk and then "Backup to Image" you have a popup asking to choose the type of image, an user is free to choose "WIM" (and even if he really wants, additionally choose "Wimboot"), and press OK, only to be greeted by a (right) info message stating how WIM is for "logical drives" only.
It would be only too logical to use the same logic BEFORE, and open the "Choose Options" popup with the WIM options already grayed out, i.e. the provided options should be compatible with the chosen source.
Another issue (but maybe here I missed something
) is the "monolithicness"
of a RAW disk image.
If I make a RAW image of a whole Disk, let's say with two partitions/volumes I seemingly cannot access/select (within clonedisk) a single partition (within the DIsk RAW image) to be used as a source to be restored to a partition/volume using the "Restore from Image".
A partition selector (not entirely unlike the one that IMDISK uses when opening a "full" disk image) and the possibility of selecting a single partition (besides the whole disk) as source for the restore action would be handy.
And another thing is - besides the MBR and the single partitions/volumes the "initial" sectors before (typically sectors 1-63 or 1-2047), it seems like there is not a way to backup (or restore) them.
Practical example, I made a RAW disk image of a 40 Gb disk divided in several partitions, of which the first one was a small 2 Gb partition, then deployed the whole thing to a new disk.
Then I made some modifications on the new disk that turned out to be "wrong", since these modifications were made only on that first partition I thought I could restore just that (the system at hand was an old, slowish machine where writing to disk 2 Gb instead of 40 makes a big difference time wise), but couldn't find a way to do so (I easily worked around the issue of course, using a "plain" dsfi, but I was on a XP, that won't have worked on 7, transferring from the image all sectors up to the end of the first partition).
As an alternative (or additionally), a nice provision would be (since clonedisk has surely these capacities internally already) to add to the "Advanced" a "dd-like" interface with fields:
Number of blocks to skip in Source SKIP =
Number of blocks to seek in Destination SEEK=
Size to be transferred COUNT=
This way the actually advanced user would have a whole lot of "manual" possibilities, including managing the "initial hidden sectors" (think as an example at MBR code that extends beyond first sector like the grub/grub4dos one or - this was actually my case - one of the hidden sectors being used to store some "protected" data by a old tool).
Now, the main
There should be some sort of check of consistency between what is the source and what is the "destination".
Right now an user can restore a partition image over a whole disk without getting any "are you really sure" kind of warning.
This is a (more severe) issue similar to the one mentioned above (about WIM format) , the program should have some safeguard against "improper" actions, particularly when they can result in damage to a disk (i.e. at least when the destination is a disk or a partition).
I guess I have provided thinking matter
(and possibly hard work
) enough for the moment
there is no hurry whatsoever of course to implement any of the above.
P.S.: What is described above is with the previous version (before 2.3.6) so if you already fixed some of the above, ignore them of course.
I may be able to re-test the new-new version at the end of next week.