Those of you with Vista know that there can be boot problems after you have cloned your existing installation to a faster or larger hard drive (it works best when its both). And, sometimes after cloning, there can be activation issues as well which I have encountered in the past.
Some say those issues are gone due to updates to the way WGA (Windows Genuine Advantage) works in Vista but Microsoft should rename their DRM protection system to Windows Genuine Annoyance.
These problems did not exist under XP but it appears that Vista places undue importance on the hard drive when deciding whether or not to deactivate itself. I am aware that SP1 changes the way WGA works slightly but that cannot change what has happened in the past.
It’s been a while since I attempted to clone a whole hard drive to a new one and make the image bootable, pending the arrival of a new laptop which I plan to clone and use a larger and faster hard drive with, I decided I would work out any issues with my current laptop.
I do own a drive imaging utility, Apricorn EZ Upgrade, at least a few Windows XP users should be familiar with this. If you are using Windows XP, there really isn’t a better utility. The problem with this and Vista is that it simply doesn’t work and yes, the manufacturer admits it but that never stopped me from trying. Vista doesn’t like it, it had problems booting, sure, using the Recovery CD to do a startup repair works but then it wants to activate again because the hard drive changed.
As easy as the Microsoft phone activation is to use, I don’t like using it and it’s an unnecessary step when all you’ve done is swap hard drives.
The challenge was finding a utility that worked with or could be forced to work with Vista. Perhaps I found that in Acronis TrueImage version 11. Maybe. Installing it was a breeze but rebooting after the installation was not and presented me with GRUB Error 22, which means, “This error is returned if the module load command is used before loading a Multiboot kernel. It only makes sense in this case anyway, as GRUB has no idea how to communicate the presence of location of such modules to a non-Multiboot-aware kernel.”