Someone may think it’s easy to transfer files from USB to another USB via “Copy and Paste”. It’s useful if your USB is just a data storage device. However, it’s cumbersome and time-consuming. More so, if your USB is a bootable device, that does not work. You cannot copy and paste the master boot record (MBR) and other files connected to secure boot your computer. And here, a question come out: how to protect your data on the USB drive?
The experienced users may choose to clone USB flash drive with a USB clone tool. Why clone USB drive? Is it able to ensure data security and secure boot?
Why do you need to clone USB drive?
A USB flash drive or pen drive can be used for a lot of things. It allows you to run portable version of programs and games, create Windows recovery disk, create Windows installation media, and try open-source operating system, etc. As it is cheap and convenient, many users have one or more USB drives for a certain purpose. Here comes an example:
“Looking for a reliable and easy-to-use USB clone tool… I have two USB sticks in hand and I’d like to clone one of the USB (bootable) to the other (newly purchased) for upgrading. Is there any easy way to accomplish? I’m not so familiar with computer knowledge, so… Thanks in advance.”
Since USB drives are very small, they are inclined to go missing. What’s more, with lots of times of plug-in and plug-out, your USB drive can get infected by virus from a virus affected computer. To avoid data loss in these unexpected events, you can clone your USB drive as a backup copy.
A clone is different from just copying and pasting the files from one to another. Simply copying files may skip some crucial files, ending up the portable program corrupted or OS unbootable. A USB drive clone is much safer and quicker than just copy and paste. If you clone a bootable USB drive, the cloned one will remain bootable.
When you see one of the USB hard drive failure symptoms, you should clone this drive to another good working USB drive to replace it. You can never be more careful about your data, so it is always a good practice to have a backup or clone of your USB drive.
Best free USB duplication software for Windows 10/8/7
To make sure all the data on the USB drive successfully cloned to another, you need to use a professional USB disk clone tool. That is when AOMEI Backupper Standard comes into play. It is a free utility that allows you to clone or backup bootable USB drive or other kinds of USB disks to different places such as another USB drive or internal hard drive.
- If you want an exact copy of the original USB drive, you can use the Sector by sector clone option to even clone the unused space.
- You can clone USB boot drive from large capacity to a smaller drive without the need to shrink the source drive.
- If your bootable USB does not work, you still have a chance to create a bootable media with a USB flash drive or CD/DVD on another computer with the same hardware. It works as boot drive, which allows you to boot your computer.
- This USB flash drive clone tool works on any Windows computer, including Windows 7/8/10/XP/Vista.
How to clone bootable USB drive (with a step-by-step guide)?
Whether you want to upgrade your USB drive or make multiple bootable USB drives, you can use AOMEI Backupper to clone your bootable drive. You do not need to pay extra effort on the bootable drive, because this freeware takes care of it all. Before you start, please download the software.
To clone a USB flash drive with AOMEI Backupper:
1. Install AOMEI Backupper on a working Windows 10/8/7 computer. Connect two USB drives to this computer, the source drive and then destination drive.
2. Open AOMEI Backupper. Click Clone and select Disk Clone. Disk Clone will clone all the data on this drive including hidden partitions. If you need to only clone one partition on this USB drive, you can select Partition Clone.
3. Select the bootable USB flash drive that you want to clone as the source disk and specify another USB drive as the destination disk to receive the clone. You can also clone USB drive to an SSD or HDD.
Note: All the data on the destination will be overwritten when the clone starts. Thus, you’d better create a backup if there is something important.
4. Confirm information and click Start Clone to start cloning bootable USB drive.
If you are trying to clone USB drive to an SSD, check SSD Alignment to get better performance.
Click Edit Partitions to resize partitions on the destination disk if needed. You may upgrade to AOMEI Backupper Professional to enjoy this feature.
The Sector by sector clone is not available when you trying to clone to a smaller drive. If you check it, the option Edit Partitions becomes unavailable.
While cloning USB bootable drive in Windows 10/8/7, you can still use your computer to do other things, and you can even edit the files in the USB drive that you are cloning.
AOMEI Backupper can not only be regarded as a USB clone tool but also as a USB image tool. You can also use it to create USB drive image backup.
To clone USB flash drive to another USB drive or HDD/SSD, USB clone tool is essential. A good tool can make things become easier. And here, we recommend you free AOMEI Backupper.
It can help you clone USB flash drive, even a bootable USB. And it offers you some features, such as, “Edit Partitions” and “SSD Alignment”, which can reduce unnecessary trouble. However, some features are only available on the paid version, and you may do edition upgrade based on your need.
If your computer is running Windows Server 2019/2016/2012 or other server systems, you need to use AOMEI Backupper Server. Download AOMEI Backupper and try it for yourself.