Vista cloning with Symantec GHOST or other any Cloning - Software.


  • Hello,

    I want to take a master- image from a VISTA installation with different versions of ghost.

    None are working.

    Please let me your experiences known with any imaging software but the BDD.




    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 10:57 AM


  • We have had great success with using XImage to both capture a Master Image and bring it back down to other PC's. We tried Ghost but it did not work for us. We received the Boot Manager error which we were able to get around, but for the purpose you need the image for, Ghost is not what we use. We have had success with BDD also.
    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 3:38 PM

All replies

  • We have had great success with using XImage to both capture a Master Image and bring it back down to other PC's. We tried Ghost but it did not work for us. We received the Boot Manager error which we were able to get around, but for the purpose you need the image for, Ghost is not what we use. We have had success with BDD also.
    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 3:38 PM
  • Tammie: It's encouraging to hear that XImage is working for you, as it's been a bit of a puzzle for me.  I've downloaded the latest BDD, assuming that AIK would exist once BDD had been installed.  That didn't seem to be the case, on either Vista32 or Vista64.  Any suggestions would be most appreciated.  I'd like to move ahead with AIK & SIM, but am stalled.

    Please reply to      Thank you. 

    Wednesday, August 2, 2006 8:10 PM
  • You have to install the WAIK manually.  It is in c:\program files\bdd vista\WAIK.
    Friday, August 4, 2006 7:59 PM
  • I had the same issue on the first reboot after the Ghost clonning.

    Here it is how I fixed it

    Boot with a Windows PE CD or any SW that allow you to run from the command prompt the followign command located on  c:\windows\system32\. ( I am not 100% sure of the directory but 95 % sure bcdedit is there.)

    bcdedit /set {bootmgr} device boot

    bcdedit /set {default} device boot

    bcdedit /set {default} osdevice boot

    That should fix your boot whatever sector/partition ...

    To prevent this from happening try to run this 3 commands on the source PC before creating the Ghost image.  The when you clone to the destination PC you should have no issues

    I hope this help you.  It worked for me

    Friday, August 18, 2006 2:40 PM
  • There's a switch with Ghost (well, ghost 8.2 anyway) that fixes the issue of the boot manager

    Use the -fdsp switch, (or -fdsz on older versions). It works for me and its much easier than playing around with bcdedit

    *All I have to do is get sysprep to work*

    Thursday, September 28, 2006 12:56 AM
  • Does this switch work when booted from the Ghost 10 rescue CD to run Ghost 8.2?

    Or can you only image Vista from *installed* versions of Ghost?
    Thursday, September 28, 2006 3:25 PM
  • Sorry I don't have Ghost 10, I have "Ghost solutions suite 1" so can't really answer too qreatly.
    However it did work these two ways

    Booting into Dos and running a script that runs 16bit Ghost.exe
    Booting into WinPE 2 and running a script that in turn runs Ghost32.exe (with the switch of course)

    So based on that I'd say that it would (unless they've changed the switch name again)
    What the fdsp switch does is preserves the signature bytes on the destination disk, originally usefull if Windows blue screens appear after a reimage of Windows 2000/XP

    Hope that helps

    Thursday, September 28, 2006 9:31 PM
  • Actually, this (sort of) *did* help.

    I had been unable to use Ghost 10 CD (which allows you into Ghost 8.2 Corporate) to image Vista -- even "sysprepped" Vista.

    But if I ran those 3 commands *before* sysprepping:

    bcdedit /set {bootmgr} device boot

    bcdedit /set {default} device boot

    bcdedit /set {default} osdevice boot

    Then I *could* image Vista with the Ghost 10 CD!  Now, if I could only figure out my issuses with Sysprep not doing what it should be doing as well!

    Thanks much for this!
    Friday, September 29, 2006 1:26 PM
  • Tammie, what was your resolution to the Boot Manager error that worked?  Was it similar to the bcdedit.exe commands shown in this thread or something different?



    Thursday, December 21, 2006 1:30 PM
  • No, we did not use the bcdedit that was shown here in this thread. What we ended up doing was clear the HDD completley and started this way. What we have found is that we were trying to use 3 partitions on our HDD. It is how they have there systems setup. Once we used one partition and made sure that all the BDD, WAIK, VISTA, etc matched up, we have had great success. We did not have to use the bcdedit and the boot manager went away once everything matched up. The key for us was having the HDD on one partition and everything matching up.
    Friday, December 22, 2006 4:12 PM

    I do agree that one partition is easiest, although in my case we use Dells that have an OEM diagnostic partition and a separate Recovery partition.  The powers that be here prefer that we at least preserve the diag partition. 

    In your case, did you use your unattend.xml to clear the drive as part of the imaging process or did you do it manually?

    I'm considering BDD 2007 as part of our imaging solution, would you recommend it? Did you start out with RIS/WDS initially or did you always use BDD?

    Also, did you ever have any success in getting PXE from WDS to load an image automatically?


    Friday, December 22, 2006 4:20 PM
  • Hello,

    I just found this forum/post because I am looking to find a way to get Symantec Ghost to work on Vista x64. I don't have a problem at all getting it to work on teh 32 bit version of Vista.

    I have Ghost working with a "virtual partition", that seems to be working ok in 32 bit versions of the OS but not with Vista x64.

    Does anyone have any tips or pointers ?



    Tuesday, December 26, 2006 7:42 PM
  • You will need to get Symantec Ghost Solution Suite 2.0 for x64 support on the clients.

    Only limitation from what I've read is if you're going to be using AI to capture application settings or to create deployment packages, it only works with 32-bit apps.

    As far as cloning Vista using Ghost32.exe, I've had no issues since before the February CTP of Vista, we've been using Ghost Corporate Edition 8.3 previous to the current version 11.

    Currently I'm testing deploying (or reverting, which is what our QA department will use it for) using Ghost Solution Suite 2.0, so far the only real hang up is working with sysprep, Vista and the Ghost Console.  Doing image creates and restores work like a charm though.  The goal for getting Sysprep working is only to save space, which may still prove impractical as each test bench box will probably have it's own set of configurations and such.....but I digress.

    I'm curious as to whether most of the issue's people have been having with Ghost and Vista have only been with the "Home" version of Ghost.

    Friday, December 29, 2006 9:13 PM
  • Where did you get Ghost 11?

    Is it out yet?  I can't find anything on Symantec's page to indicate it's out.  (Ghost 10 -- which has Corporate 8.2 in it -- we have and that doesn't work to clone Vista...)

    - Steve
    Thursday, January 4, 2007 6:30 PM
  • "You will need to get Symantec Ghost Solution Suite 2.0 for x64 support on the clients."

    This applies to Vista as well.

    Ghost Corporate Edition 8.3 was the version number that was purchased with Symantec Ghost Solution Suite 1.1, and Ghost Corporate Edition 11 is the version that ships with SGSS 2.0.  Yes it is out.

    If you're looking for it under the Home and Home Office section of Symantec's site, you aren't going to find it, as it is a business product.

    Thursday, January 4, 2007 6:58 PM
  • Hi,

    It seems that you have problem to find the right product, you can use this link:

     this should help.


    Thursday, January 4, 2007 10:30 PM
  • Previous version of Ghost could restore early builds of Vista but not the later ones. The first major problem came when Vista didn’t like Ghost clearing the disk signature. Many users overcome this by using the switch –fdsp  (Force Disk Signature Preserve) with Ghost.


    The second was when partition alignments in Vista changed from track boundary to MB boundary. In most of the disks, first partition used to start from track one (offset sector 63) and Vista starts it from 1MB (usually 2048) sectors. This is the reason for previous versions of Ghost to work with some machines but not with the others. For example, if you install Vista on a partition already created by a previous version of Windows or another tool, it could work since the partition offset is still track-aligned.


    Usually it is possible to correct these things using BCD edit.


    Ghost 11, comes with GSS 2.0 handles all these situations correctly, and it is the version that officially support Vista.


    Regarding the questions on versions, Ghost versions 8.0, 8.2 (GSS 1.0), 8.3 (GSS 1.1) and 11 (GSS 2.0) are the recent enterprise versions. These versions use a cloning technology more suitable for deploying OSs in enterprise environments. Versions 9 and 10 are consumer versions, which use a completely different cloning technology which is more suitable for consumer environments.


    Friday, January 5, 2007 12:59 AM
  • Ghost Solution Suite 2 contains version 11 of the Ghost cloning tool - we had to skip from 8.3 to 11 because of the version numbering confusion caused by the consumer product. It was released in early December - you can find it at Symantec's Enterprise or Medium Business product pages.

    The Ghost code in GSS2 will automatically deal with the BCD database when you restore, so no patching up with other tools should be necessary.
    Friday, January 5, 2007 1:53 AM
  • Does GSS2 contain a bootable CD like Ghost 10 does?

    With Ghost 10, there's that "recovery" CD that you can boot from and go into "restore from legacy disk image" to get into Ghost Corporate 8.2

    This is what we use to image XP.

    Is there something similar in GSS2 for access to a Ghost 11/Corporate 8.3 "recovery" CD?
    Friday, January 5, 2007 4:07 PM
  • Hi Steve,

    GSS is a different product to NG 10, focused on deploying images and other resources to machines remotely.

    There is no CD comes with the system, but it has an application,  Ghost Boot Wizard, which enables you to create DOS based boot CDs/Floppies or USB keys in order to perform cloning operations, either locally or using networks. There are many other features too, you will be able to get a better idea if you follow the links in the previous posts.

    Ghost.exe and Ghost32.exe are components of GSS 2.0.


    Monday, January 8, 2007 4:17 AM
  • Ghost solution suite 2.0 has Ghost.exe version 11 and works fine with Vista.
    Monday, January 15, 2007 8:36 AM
  • Hi,

    I've read this entire thread and there's a lot of good information here, but i am also a bit confused with all the products being thrown out to try. 

    I'm wondering if someone could summarize what to try or do.

    In my situation, I have a 60 gig hard drive with only 1 partition and Vista Ultimate installed cleanly.  I reformatted the drive before installing Vista.  I routinely (under XP) reformat my drive and then do a restore of my base image (just the OS with Drivers and updates) and then update manually from that point.  This way i don't have to reactivate the software each time i do a restore/reinstall, etc.

    I would like to continue this practice under Windows VISTA Ultimate.

    I have a clean install of the OS, everything is configured as i like, drivers are all installed and now, before i start loading programs, i want to get a clean backup image so that going forward when i want to return to this point, i don't have to start from scratch and i don't have to reactivate the OS each time.

    I've tried using a manufacturers Ghost 2003 boot cd but it acts goofy.  I need 2 DVD's to do the image.  I get through the first DVD just fine which is about 62% of the backup.  I then put in the 2nd DVD and the backup continues for about 3 minutes.  It reaches 65% of the backup and then the disk is closed out, ejected and Ghost pops up a window saying that the image was created successfully.  <-- even though it closed out at only 65%.

    So, i've been looking for any info on why this is happening and what i can do to correct this so that i can start loading my main programs.

    This thread has a lot of good information, but there's a lot of products being thrown out for discussion as well as using various switches, command lines, etc.  Unfortunate for me, i'm not a programmer and don't know DOS very well.  I apologize for my ignorance in this area.  I'm fairly simple in what i can do outside of Windows. 

    I get the feeling that my only real option is to reinstall XP and then UPGRADE to Vista over the top and then use Ghost 2003. 

    Can someone summarize this thread and help steer me into a single product that i can use, or give instructions on how to make Ghost 2003 work?  I really would like to be able to start loading programs, but i just don't want to until i get a clean backup of my HD. 

    Thank you very much for any help and/or insight you can provide.  :)


    Friday, February 2, 2007 6:55 PM
  • Well aside from all the programs and methods that are mentioned above, I think the cheapest way would be to use WDS. If you have any other computer that can run either server 2003 or any edition of vista, you can use Imagex and WDS to make / restore your image very efficiently.  I would recommend this for you over ghost or other programs because it is easy and very cheap, especially for maintaining just one machine. 

    You can download WDS and Image for free with the OPK tools.
    Friday, February 2, 2007 7:35 PM
  • OK...

    If I were a non-technical user I would ask;

    1.)What is WDS and where do I get it?

    2.) What is ImageX or Ximage and where do I get it?

    3.) What is OPK tools and where do I get it?

    4.) Where can get instructions for the above?

    Of course I'm a techie so I won't ask for myself, I'll ask for the non-techies out there :-)

    Tuesday, February 6, 2007 10:43 PM
  • I believe that in ghost 2003 this can be accomplished through the options menu as well.  Forcing ghost to clone the boot sector.  The command line is something like -ImageBoot or -ImageAll.
    Saturday, February 24, 2007 8:36 PM
  • I'm a newbie to Windows Cloning so :

    1.)What is WDS and where do I get it?

    2.) What is ImageX or Ximage and where do I get it?

    3.) What is OPK tools and where do I get it?

    4.) Where can get instructions for the above?

    Monday, March 12, 2007 8:24 PM
  • Here is a tool that will prepare your Vista installation for cloning:


    Tuesday, July 10, 2007 2:26 PM
  • ok dude does your Harddisk have a hidden partition or is it a clean HDD which have only XP with it and you reformat it to vista
    Wednesday, July 18, 2007 12:25 PM
  • I have had a lot of problems with sysprep and images built for Bit-Locker. I use Ghstwalk to rename/reSID the computer after its imaged.

    I created a boot disk that was network capable and would automaticly join a ghost session. It will also 'Ghost Walk' the computer after the imaging is completed. Works great! All I have to do is configure the ghost server to start the session once X number of clients join. Boot up X number of computer using the disk and sit back and watch. Once the disk runs its course, remove and reboot. =)


    This is all with SGSS 2.0
    Wednesday, July 18, 2007 6:16 PM

    Ghost 11 is a part of Ghost Suite 2.0.  Which has already been updated to Ghost Suite 2.0.1 through live update.  The updates are significant and solve some issues with cloning Vista machines.
    Thursday, August 16, 2007 12:41 PM
  • Ok, but wait. This process you have listed JoeTAG only works if the sysetm you are using support PXE/etc. right?

    What if you need to clone a system that does not have a UNDI / PXE supported NIC? You have to image it to a USB external drive and manually clone it to each?

    How do you get the Vista clone to work with 11.0.1 Ghost (i have SS2.0) and have it not freak out when you move it to the next unit?

    Yes, i have a Volume (LEGAL) lic of Vista Biz.
    Tuesday, September 11, 2007 9:00 PM
  • You need Ghost Solution Suite 2 (AKA Ghost 11). It fully supports VISTA.
    Tuesday, February 5, 2008 6:15 PM
  • MaryGL, this worked great for me, thank you!!!

    I created an image by booting off UBCD4WIN. Then I ran Ghost32 corporate edition 8.0. When I re-loaded the image and booted, Vista would not load. There was no error and the system just kept rebooting after the Dell logo went off.

    I again booted off the UBCD4WIN disc and followed your instructions. When I rebooted Vista came up with no problems!

    Boot with a Windows PE CD or any SW that allow you to run from the command prompt the following command located on  c:\windows\system32\

    bcdedit /set {bootmgr} device boot

    bcdedit /set {default} device boot

    bcdedit /set {default} osdevice boot

    I know this is an old thread but someone else may find it useful...

    Thanks again!
    Thursday, April 9, 2009 8:09 PM
  • Ghost is one of the best backup software with cloning hard disk.

    And i found another interesting video about how to clone windows vista based hard disk with an free program, name easeus backup software.

    here is the link

    may it useful   ;D

    Friday, March 4, 2011 6:23 AM