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How to copy an Ubuntu install from one laptop to another

I am anxiously awaiting my new SSD for my Ubuntu server, and realized I have no idea on how to copy all my files from my Hard drive to my SSD. Is there any easy or moderately easy way to do this? I want OS to boot from SSD and keep the hard drive as a file storage drive.

I know there are some ISO downloads, but haven't found any compatible with Ubuntu Server 12.04.

Thanks :)

ccrama

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marked as duplicate by January, Eliah Kagan, Mitch, Stephen Myall, LnxSlck Oct 2 '12 at 13:49

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

2 Answers

ccrama, I Do agree that this is a duplicate of How to copy an Ubuntu install from one laptop to another but that is precisely one of the things i have enjoyed the most about switching to Linux: Most users (not all, but hey) will be very helpful and instead of shutting you down or making you feel dumb, they help and point at other references. This shows experience and the fact that Linux (Ubuntu in our case) has been around and knows there are issues, but knows how to go about addressing them.

Both methods described in the link above work well, but here is the way i've approached it: Your SSD will come with a CD for precisely moving your OS install from one drive to another. 99.5% of the time it is Acronis Home. Even though it is geared towards windows installations, it works fine with Linux (asumming you don't have some really specialized File system). If you do, it still works but the SSD has to be the same size or bigger than the original one. However, it will detect that for you and let you know how it will proceed.

So, run the utility, choose the option to clone, choose any resizing options you may need on your partitions, and let it do its magic. Now, i've had to do this a couple of times so here are some things i've learned along the way:

  • If you did some of the recomended partitioning on your existing system (i.e. /home in separate partition, etc) then great. If not, is the moment to do it.
  • Search in this site for SSD specific settings to maximize the speed you can get from the drive ( If not here are 2 bookmarks i kept for this purpose: Tuning Solid State Drives in Linux and A Tweaker's Guide to Solid State Drives (SSDs) and Linux but please keep in mind that they are a bit older, so i would search for newer info

So those are my 2 cents. :) Good luck

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My ssd did not come with any cd, so I will go with the post above. Thanks for the help though! –  ccrama Oct 2 '12 at 22:49
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There are few thing you must do before you can boot. First, you can run your currently installed Ubuntu after you mounted your SSD, then move all files from you HDD to SDD (assuming you Ubuntu server recognizes SDD without any problems) and then do fresh install where you install new copy of Ubuntu on SSD while making sure that it will be your primary HDD.

I don't think you can actually copy all files from one HDD to the other and making everything working as did before. I believe only fresh installation will make this happen more easily.

PS. When you install new Ubuntu on SSD this will mean you will have dual boot before your Ubuntu starts. You can basically install the Ubuntu on new SSD and then move all files after installation because as long as you don't format old HDD it will retain all your files.

Hope this helps.

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