- Jul 31, 2012
- HD4600 / RX 570
- Mobile Phone
Easy Way to make a Bootable Clone of your macOS System Drive
9/2019 Update: See https://www.tonymacx86.com/threads/easy-way-to-make-a-bootable-clone-of-your-macos-system-drive.254705/page-4#post-2004715 for a new way to create a bootable clone for free with the Acronis Trial.
- 3/2019 Update: This doesn't seem to be working on Mojave APFS formatted drives. The original testing was performed on HFS + drives with High Sierra and that did work normally. For Mojave APFS drives use the paid 2019 or 2020 version to clone your macOS drive from right on your desktop or from the rescue USB.
1. You won't have to manually copy the contents of your EFI partition or even run a script to do that.
2. Use of the Terminal is not required either. Just a a simple GUI interface in A.T.I. that is easy to navigate.
3. Since you'll be booting from an external USB or DVD your macOS system drive will be in a static state.
If you want to try out Acronis 2019 they offer a one month trial version. Make a backup from right within macOS.
https://www.acronis.com/en-us/lp/personal/time-machine-backup/ Cloning option requires paid version.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Do not try this cloning technique on a mixed macOS/Windows 7/8/10 dual boot drive
when both operating systems are on the same drive. It could cause issues. Clone only one OS at a time.
OS and File System CompatibilityOverview of the Process
1. Download a Win10PE SE ISO and copy the contents of the ISO to a clean MBR/FAT32 formatted USB flash drive.
a. You'll need a 4GB or larger USB flash drive. Either a USB 2 or a USB 3 drive should work.
b. Open the Win10 PE ISO image in Windows 8, 8.1 or 10 then copy the contents to your flash drive. Here's what you'll see after you've mounted and opened the ISO file.
If you only have access to Windows 7 then use http://wincdemu.sysprogs.org
Three ways to Mount an ISO in Windows
- Double-click an ISO file to mount it.
- Select the file in File Explorer and and click the “Mount” button under the “Disk Image Tools” tab on the ribbon.
- Right-click an ISO file and select the “Mount” option
c. Secure Boot should already be disabled in your UEFI. If not, do that now before attempting to boot this drive.
d. I'd suggest you dis-connect the sata data cable to all other drives installed in your build before you make the clone, to avoid any mistakes on your part.
2. Boot UEFI from the USB drive on your CustoMac to load up Win10PE SE. (It runs in ram, so be patient as it loads)
a. If you have a 5 or 6 series motherboard and are unable to boot UEFI then you'll need to burn the ISO.
b. Use a flash drive or DVD and burn it in Windows or in an older version of macOS that allows disk burning.
3. Open up Acronis True Image 2017 on the desktop and clone your macOS system drive to the destination/clone drive.
4. Disconnect all drives, except the clone. Test out the Clone drive by attempting to boot from it and run macOS.
5. Keep your backup clone drive in a safe place if anything (like an update) should mess up your macOS boot drive.
Believe me, at some point it will, and you'll be glad you made a bootable clone first.
I have tested this out on a High Sierra APFS SSD drive and it worked perfectly. No need to copy your EFI folder from your source drive or run a script to do that automatically. Your Bootable Win10PE SE rescue drive can also be used on your Windows drives to recover data and fix problems among many other things. Obviously, this is a great tool to use for cloning Windows too. It is the easiest to use all in one backup and recovery solution if you dual boot macOS and Windows. See the following article for a discussion of the differences between cloning a drive and imaging a drive. Disk Imaging vs. Disk Cloning
Where to get the pre-built Win10PE SE ISO**
This was created by Kyhi and is based on the Win10PE SE project at TheOven.org
There are 32 bit and 64 bit versions. Its best to use the 64 bit (x64) version via the download section on tenforums.com if you have a UEFI capable system. If you have an older legacy only system and < 5GB of ram try the 32 bit (x86) version of the ISO image.
I prefer to clone my macOS system drive when booted from a USB instead of when I am booted into my macOS system drive. Acronis is an all in one solution for Windows and Mac dual boot systems and is incredibly easy to use. It's free to give it a try.
If you do want to use the paid version, do not buy the Mac version. It doesn't allow you to clone your system drive, it only allows you to make backups. Buy the Windows version, create a bootable USB drive and you can do the same as has been shown above. The paid Windows version is $49 for a lifetime license. I have not tested the paid version so if you give it a try post below about how it has worked for you. I'm assuming that it will work the same for macOS cloning as the trial version does.
Learn more about WinPE here: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-hardware/manufacture/desktop/winpe-intro
If you'd like to build your own WindowsPE SE drive and add all the Windows apps that are useful to you then go to:
Click on the Packages tab in the dropdown menu.
Then you will see the following page: