Cloning an installed OS is relatively easy (I do it at least once a week) but the PC on which you create the clone must have a second hard disk with free space equal to or greater than than the OS disk, or an empty partition same size or larger than the OS partition. This second disk/partition is required for the clone to be written to.
As for the actual cloning software, I can only recommend what I use on a regular basis and which works for me, and that's 'Norton Ghost' (just about the only Norton product that's worth spending money on).
One other important point. Cloning to other computers will only work error-free if those computers are all the same spec internally (ie same internal hardware) as the computer on which the clone was created (the 'donor' computer). That means specifically any internal hardware which uses a device driver, as these drivers will be within the operating system itself (and therefore also within the clone). Any mismatch of driver & device when the clone is installed on a 'target' PC which isn't exactly the same spec will likely produce errors which will have to be dealt with. It doesn't necessarily mean the clone-transfer will fail but it just won't be totally error-free if their are differences in spec./driver requirements.
Driver-less components (CPU,RAM etc.) across a batch of computers do not necessarily have to match those within the 'donor' computer in this context.
Edited by pip22, 22 February 2008 - 01:15 PM.