Please check the status of this specification in Launchpad before editing it. If it is Approved, contact the Assignee or another knowledgeable person before making changes.


Many users install Ubuntu initially on a "smaller" drive, then find, as they go along, that they'd like to install it on a newer, larger drive. There should be a simple way to allow them to move their existing Ubuntu installation to the newer drive.


It's a pain to have to do a fresh installation of ubuntu, then try to help the user move their /home, and other config files across, including any multimedia customizations they may have made. It would be much easier to have a tool that simply allows them to drop the new drive in, and migrate their config.

Use cases

Amanda originally installed her Edubuntu on an old 8 Gig drive she had lying around. She's so happy with Edubuntu, she's gone out and bought a brand new 120 Gig SATA drive to install it on. She opens the case, pops in the new drive, boots her box, and starts up the Hard Disk Migration Tool. It creates a similar partition scheme to what's currently on her hard drive, moves the data across, and installs grub on the new drive, all while simply displaying a nice, graphical, "progress bar" type interface. After it's complete, she shuts down the machine, yanks the power connector to the old drive, and adjusts her bios to point to the new drive. Up comes her Edubuntu, same as before. Now her kids will have plenty of room to save their TuxPaint drawings!!


  • base-utils?


  • Steal partitioning code from live-installer
  • cp -ax / /new-drive
  • vol_id /dev/new_root and /dev/new_swap, to update the fstab UUID's for the new drive.
  • patch up the grub menu on the new drive to point to the new disk, if needed (say, going from a hda1 to an sda1)
  • grub-install
  • ??


  • Python-based gui.


  • To be discussed at UDS Mountain View

Data preservation and migration

  • DO NOT TOUCH EXISTING DRIVE. Failsafe mode: just boot old drive again.
  • Should we handle "nonstandard" partitioning in first cut, or just stick to standard "root & swap" installs?

Unresolved issues

BoF agenda and discussion


HardDiskMigrationTool (last edited 2008-08-06 16:31:22 by localhost)