Using dd disk images


Have an existing disk that has specialized partitions that arnd easily backed up using fsarchiver. For example, Windows 8 disk on a brand new computer.


  1. Use fsarchiver probe to find the disk.
  2. Be sure the disk is not mounted.
  3. cd to a target directory with plenty of space. Note: the image will be compressed.
  4. To create the image, run this command: dd if=/dev/sdc conv=sync,noerror bs=32M | pv | xz -c | split -b 23000m


  • The source disk for the above command is at /dev/sdc.
  • Google the model of the hard disk shown on fsarchiver probe to find the buffer size of the disk (32MB in the above example)
  • Be sure pv and xz are installed.
  • The target media of the above is a blu-ray disk. (-b 23000m). Lower this number for DVD’s or CD’s.
  • This process could take several days. Just let it run in the background. A 2T drive took me about 3 straight days.
  1. New files will appear on the current directory as xaa, xab, xac, etc. When a new file appears, rename the old file to something helpful like: new_system_drive_01.dd.xz. DO NOT rename or burn a file that is still being created.
  2. Burn these files to a blu-ray disk. I recommend x3b for Ubuntu.



221 Words

2013-09-02 10:24 +0000