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Comparing Disk Clone and System Clone: Which One is Best for Your Backup and Recovery Needs?

Wondershare Recoverit Authors

Jan 27, 2024 • Filed to: Take Data Backup • Proven solutions


Backupper v2.2 has both Disk Clone and System Clone options. I'm a little confused about which I should use to transfer the entire contents of my laptop HDD to a new Samsung 850 Pro SSD.

Both options seem to do the same thing but System Clone has only been available with v2.1. Has System Clone now replaced Disk Clone?


Depending on your requirements when it comes to creating a backup, this disk clone vs partition clone is an all-time puzzle that needs to be solved at first. Either to go for a disk clone or you should opt for a system clone, this purely depends on the problem you are facing. In case, your device is confronting issues related to disk i.e. bad sectors, virus or malware attacks, disk corruption, etc., it is wise to opt for the disk clone and if your system fails to work due to window corruption then you need a system clone as a backup. This article further explains a fair contest between system clone vs disk clone.

At first, clone by word means creating an exact copy of a particular thing. When it comes to computing and technology, the word clone here again means creating copies but for now, this means creating copies of data saved or the system on the whole. The process of cloning is segregated into two broad categories i.e. disk clone and system clone. Both acting as a backup technique serves the same purpose i.e. saving data against any potential data loss. Both of the types are different from each other and performed in different situations via supporting software. This article is going to explain the clear-cut difference between disk clone vs system clone and also gives a third-party application software solution to create both types of clone. Here are the topics that would be discussed in detail.

Part 1: What Are Disk Clone and System Clone?

1. Disk Clone:

Disk cloning is a technique in which you create a copy of the targeted hard disk drive i.e. all files and file systems saved on the partition. Just acting as a backup process, the disk cloning is performed to save the data against any potential data loss due to disaster, or when you are going to change the hard drive in case of any physical or technical damage. Disk coning is performed with the help of specialized software i.e. it can be cloning software, disk imaging software, or backup software.

2. System Clone:

A system clone is a copy of the original operating system cloned via software. It is the technique of migration in which the operating system if one device is migrated to another with all its relevant applications, drivers, updates, and customized setting. In other words, it is all about creating a system image via migration software.

3. The Difference:

When it is about system clone vs disk clone, both of the techniques are carried out under different circumstances. For a disk cloning to take place, a disk image is created when the hard drive is corrupted, due to bad sectors, any virus or malware attack, or in case you are going to replace your hard drive with a new one due to any physical damage.

When it is about a system clone, it is mostly created when your window is corrupted or you are going to sell your device. A system clone is also created in a stance where you are going to create a network and your device is going to act as an administrator. A clone created will migrate the operating system with all its related system drivers, applications, and updates. In this way, all the devices in a loop will carry the same operating system.

Part 2: How to Choose Between Disk Clone and System Clone?

Disk clone vs system clone! A hard choice to make. As mentioned above, it is purely related to the requirement of the user or a circumstance in which you are creating the clone. Here are two of the important factors that should be taken into consideration while creating either a disk or system clone.

1. The contents you want to transfer

It mainly depends on the type of content you are transferring to SSD. If it is about all the file and file systems along with applications and drivers of the hard drive, then you are going to make a disk clone. In case, you are going to create a copy of your operating system either to conserve it for future use or you want to create a network of devices all set up with the same operating system, then you have to create a system clone.

2. The capacity of the destination disk

The decision of creating a disk or a system clone also depends on the capacity of the destination disk i.e. SSD. If you are tending to migrate the content of a larger disk into a smaller disk, you first have to make sure if your destination disk is capable of holding all the data. In case you are facing a capacity limitation, you have to go for a system clone.

Part 3: Choose The Best Software for Disk Clone and System Clone

As there exists no built-in mechanism to create either a disk or system clone, so you need third-party application software support to carry out the process.

Among other mainstream professional software, Wondershare UBackit and AOMEI Backupper professional is the best in their work. Wondershare UBackit backup software supports Windows 11/10/8.1/8/7, the software provides an efficient procedure to create bot clones.

The disk cloning features of Wondershare UBackit offer to clone a large disk into a small destination drive, MBR drive to a GPT disk. It also offers cloning for different disk brands i.e. Samsung SSD, WD SSD, and SanDisk SSD. It also allows for aligning the SSD.

While the system clone category of AOMEI Backupper offers to clone the operating system to either HDD or SSD effortlessly. The software will select the system partition automatically to eliminate human errors.

Here are the two cases of creating clone via Wondershare UBackit and AOMEI Backupper.

Case 1: Disk Clone-Clone HDD to SSD via Wondershare UBackit

Consider creating a disk clone and you have to transfer the data from HDD to SSD. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1 Launch And Install Wondershare UBackit

launch ubackit

Step 2 Select A Disk to Clone

From the list of the available drives, just choose the drive to back up (like C/D/E/F) and click on the “Select” button.

select hard disk

Step 3 Select Backup Destination

It is advised that you choose a brand new external hard drive to store the backup data and settings. Also, ensure that the storage space is big enough to load the whole disk.

choose backup destination

Step 4 Complete the Cloning Process

After clicking on the “Backup” button, you can just sit back, and wait for a while. The application will display the progress of the disk backup process on the screen.

start the disk imrror backup process

When the backup process is finished, you can choose to "Set Auto Backup" to release you from backup worries. Just click on "Settings", you can backup your hard disk daily, weekly, monthly, or even non-stop.

Case 2: System Clone-Migrate OS to SSD using AOMEI Backupper

If making a system clone is your prime goal, then here are the steps to create one via AOMEI back upper:

Step 1: Download and install the software and then launch it on your device.

Step 2: In the main menu, select the option of Clone and click on the option of system clone.


Step 3: the software will select the system partition automatically. You have to select the destination partition. Click next to continue.


Step 4: Check the SSD alignment and click start clone to continue.


Once the process will complete, you can change the boot preferences for the new SSD clone created.

In a struggle of disk clone vs system clone, it is quite difficult to make a wise choice. To solve the puzzle you should be clear about the target i.e. why are you going to create the clone? Apart from this, you should have keen information about the content that you are going to transfer and the size of the destination disk in which you are going to migrate the data. Once you are clear about your requirements, you need third-party application software to carry out the process. In this article, Wondershare UBackit and AOMEI Backupper are presented as a potential software solutions to create either disk or system clone as per requirements. A stepwise procedure is explained to carry out the process.

Recoverit author

Amy Dennis

staff Editor

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