View Full Version : cloning to a larger HD?

05-06-2009, 05:17 AM
I want to upgrade my Macbook's HD to a larger size.
When I clone my system disk to an externally (USB) connected SATA drive of larger size, will the resulting filesystem be the size of the original disk, or will SD magically be able to increase the image so that it spans the whole new disk?
Is there any formatting required on the new disk before running SD?
Can I then simply insert the new HD into the Macbook and use that as the new system disk (keeping the old one as safety) or do I need to clone back for some reason to yet another disk?

Alternatively, could I partition the new disk into two separate images, one holding the original image cloned and the other new and empty for data etc?

The manual does not seem to discuss cloning to disks of a different size..

05-06-2009, 09:45 AM
I've covered this elsewhere, but upgrading to a new/larger drive is easy.

First, prepare the new drive by partitioning it:

Start Disk Utility
Select the external drive hardware in the sidebar
Click the Partition tab (if it doesn't appear, you selected the volume, not the drive hardware above it)
Use Disk Utility's controls to divide the drive as needed, even as a single large partition. Use "Mac OS Extended (Journaled)" as the format type and name appropriately
Click Options
Choose the proper partition scheme (GUID for Intel macs, Apple Partition Map for Power PC) and accept the page
Click Partition.

Then, make a full "Backup - all files" with "Smart Update" or "Erase, then copy" to the new drive.

Rename the drive to have the same name as the original.

Now, shut down and swap the drives.

Power back up -- you'll notice it'll take a while to start (it's looking for the original drive). When it finally boots, open System Preferences and select the new drive as the startup drive in the Startup Disk preference pane.

That's all there is to it! Note that some copy protected programs might notice that the new drive is different than the old one and may need to be 'reactivated'.