I am looking to copy the whole Ubuntu system from one laptop to another laptop (with no operating system), how can I do it ?

I found older threads How to back up my entire system? but they looks to be 2-3 years old so I thought we may be having a better solution now ?

  • The older question you refer to looks good to me. I'd prefer a fresh install of Ubuntu and use a list of installed software generated from the old laptop to populate the new laptop as suggested in one of the answers. – user68186 Dec 19 '13 at 11:07

Normally simply copying an operating system from one place to another is not a good idea. A lot of configuration is done during the install. Instead what you are best to do in my opinion is copy your home directory across (including all the hidden files) this should give you most of your personal settings for programs. For any program which doesn't open with your settings when you install it on the new laptop you can normally find where that program saves its preferences with a google and copy them across with a USB stick. I really recommend this option!!

If you really want to give it a go. You can use clonezilla in live CD mode to create a copy of your system image onto an external drive. The boot on the new laptop in clonezilla live CD and copy the system partition on. I stress, however, I think this is a bad idea! I have done this before for moving a system from one HDD to another, but it was for use in the same system, I was just changing drive.


You can use Clonezilla. It is pretty advanced program/distro that needs some linux/computer knowledge. Here's some guides that shows you how to use it:





There's two ways you can accomplice your copy:

  1. Make an image of the HDD that you later restore to the new HDD
  2. You can clone the two HDDs "live", in other words you need both HDDs connected to the computer at the same time, which is hard on a laptop.

I assume that the new laptop uses the exact hardware as the first one. If not, I recommend you to reinstall Ubuntu at the new laptop and just copy all of your personal files. If you just copy the HDD to another new laptop with new hardware, drivers and other things will get broken, and it probably won't boot correctly.

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