I'm am trying to accomplish the following. I currently have a 200MB Boot Windows 7 x64 install partition (the first partition) on a 2TB Western Digital Caviar Green drive. The other 1.8TB is a data partition. I recently bought a 1.5TB WD Caviar Black drive, and it being faster I would like to clone my existing Windows 7 install onto the drive and have it take the current install's place (once it's working I'll re-purpose the 200MB partition on the Caviar Green - possibly just removing the partition and expanding the existing 1.8TB to use the whole drive). Anyway please note that the target drive is smaller than the existing drive, even though I only want to clone a relatively small boot/OS partition that will easily fit within the target drive.
I consider myself moderately technically savvy but I have failed miserably to get a working clone. My prior install still seems to be working fine though so I believe I can try try again. I've tried a couple of options thus far: DriveImage XML and Clonezilla. Actually first I tried the Western Digital-specific free version of Acronis, but as far as I could tell that version would only allow a drive-to-drive clone, not an individual partition. Or maybe it was that it could clone a partition but for some reason wouldn't clone a partition from a larger drive to smaller drive (even if the partition would fit).
FYI I have a Gigabyte GA-P55-UDP3 motherboard and am using the set of 6 SATA ports numbered 0-5 (not the 2 SATA3-capable ports on the I-think Marvel controller). I had the 2TB Caviar Green in Port 0, 3 other data drives in ports 1-3, and I put the next 1.5TB Caviar Black into Port 4 during all of this.
Long story short I'm wondering the best method for moving Windows 7 from my old partition on the bigger drive to a new partition on the slightly smaller drive and making sure it boots. As I said I think my prior install is still working OK (aside form some extraneous Windows boot loader choices) and I don't mind re-doing any imaging option. Specifics on whether I should need to swap the new drive into the old one's SATA port at some point or adjust my BIOS to point at a specific drive (it's unclear to me if I can specify one particular drive aside from using the F12-each-time boot loader) would be greatly appreciated.
If you're interested here are the details on what I've tried before.
After giving up on Acronis I tried doing a live clone (while booted into Win 7 on the old Caviar Green install) using DriveImage XML. I first created a "200MB" partition (but didn't format it) - actually more like 215MB so presumably measured by powers of 2, not 10 - using the tool within the WD Acronis - I figured I should use that for the partitioning just in case there was any issue about large-sector/block alignment (or whatever it's called). I chose to make the destination partition slightly larger just to be on the safe side. One problem (I came to realize) is that even when not formatting I think it still chose to label the target drive as E:/ (or maybe that was on an initial attempt in which it did format - I can't remember). After the cloning finished I booted and tried selecting the 1.5TB drive specifically from the BIOS boot menu but wasn't surprised I couldn't boot. I then booted to the Win 7 x64 install DVD, chose Repair, and let it auto-fix the startup options. This led to 2 new Windows boot menu options, both labeled something like "Windows 7(Recovered)" in addition to a "Windows 7". One of those 2 seemed to point to the new install, however it seems like it was labeling itself as drive E: but still using the cloned install image referring to everything on C:\ (which was still showing up in explorer as belonging to the original partition on the 2TB drive). It was never exactly clear to me which menu option was the right one to boot off the new drive, or if there even was a working one, or if the boot loader was on the new drive and not on the existing one, so I gave up with DriveImage XML.
So then I tried CloneZilla. Long story short I booted into that off a USB stick install, chose what I thought were appropriate install options, tried installing, once it finished I powered down, unplugged the old Green drive to be sure, and tried booting. But despite all of my permutations of BIOS Boot Menu choosing the new drive explicitly, choosing the various 3 Windows 7 boot menu options (they appear to have been cloned), running the Windows 7 install DVD startup repair optoin, and swapping the new drive from SATA port 4 to port 0 I don't seem to have a clean clone. I have managed with some combination of the preceding to not only at least get the Win7 boot menu but also get windows to boot, but once I logged in it started it got hung on "Preparing Desktop" which seemed to me to suggest it was not reading my profile data properly (perhaps this was a boot option where it was treating the boot drive as E:?). Anyway that's where I'm at now - I feel I've made a mess of my previous attempts and would prefer a fresh start directed by someone who knows what they're doing.
Thanks in advance!