Ghost binaries on bootable CD/DVD or USB thumb drive
Windows 7 installation DVD or USB thumb drive
There are several ways to speed up some old computers. Sometimes, they might not even be old – they’re just slow.
My mother’s laptop was crawling. It had a dual-core 2ghz chip, 4gb ram. Why was it slow? I figured, 4gb ram is enough to run Windows 7 – I’m running a bunch of VMs and I only have 5gb ram on the server. So, it had to be i/o. Since I had an old 128gb SSD from a laptop I had before, I put it in. The problem was, the laptop had a 320gb hd. Clonezilla wouldn’t clone it – gave me some issues with partimage. I remember that the old Ghost 2003 would do a bigger to smaller disk. So, I tried that. Ghost gave me other issues. I tried ghost.exe -fdsp because this is Windows 7. Vista changed some things with NTFS or something that made Ghost stop working with the default settings. The first time I tried Ghost, it ran for 90 minutes and ran into a bad sector. 🙁 It failed. So I tried bypassing it. I ran ghost with the -BSC -FRO switches. It then ran into some issue with a big file or something and told me to pass the -NTC- switch. Well, that failed and told me the same thing, so I just decided to abandon the ghost idea and start fresh.
Since I had the idea of upgrading my mom’s hd, I did the same with a couple of other computers, so my process has been repeated. On the other machines, I got 1tb Seagate ssd hybrid desktop drives (sshd) for $80 each. Ghost 2003 or 8.0 both work for Windows 7. The first thing I did was put the SSD in along with the disk I wanted to clone. I booted from one of my old Ghost DVD archives, but on one machine, there was only 2 SATA ports, so I had to figure out a way to build a bootable USB thumb drive. The one I ended up using was UNetbootin – with that, I created a FreeDOS bootable thumb drive and copied the ghost.exe binary there. Since the stupid Ghost DVD archive only had .GHO files on it and I could access the DOS partition, I ended up copying ghost.exe by extracting it from an old Hiren’s Boot CD. With that, I was able to boot from USB. You can copy ghost.exe onto the USB drive, but FreeDOS boots in it’s own jail or something. The ghost.exe actually ends up on b:\. You should be able to then do the clone using ghost.exe -FDSP -BSC -FRO. After a successful clone, since this is Windows 7, we’re not exactly done yet. The disk will not boot – will give
Windows failed to start. A recent hardware or software change might be the cause. To fix the problem:
1.Insert your Windows installation disc and restart your computer.
2.Choose your language settings, and then click “Next.”
3.Click “Repair you computer.” If you do not have this disc, contact your system administrator or computer manufacturer for assistance.
Info: The boot selection failed because a required device is inaccessible.
This is an easy fix. Just follow the directions. Boot with the Windows 7 install DVD or USB thumb drive and go to repair and it’s done almost automatically. On one host, it asked to run CHKDSK afterwards. I let it run and everything was dandy as well. But if all else fails you could buy one of the best budget gaming laptops that is guaranteed to run great.