Simple whole volume copy

Henri Shustak henri.shustak at
Thu May 27 02:19:05 MDT 2010

> Sorry, I'm only going to be doing this a single time. I don't really need a script, just a simple command 

I urge to to read this great write up "Cloning Mac OS X disks" by Mike Bombich : <>

If you have access to a test computer system running Mac OS 10.6, then I recommend that you familiarize yourself with rsync on that separate test system. If you do not have a separate test system available, then plug in a memory stick or create a disk image and do some testing prior to running this on your destination drive. 

I find the following rsync options '--dry-run', '--verbose' and '--log-file=FILE' options are useful for testing purposes.

Also, would you kindly answer the following questions for clarification : 

(1) Do you have a destination volume with some of the files from the source volume already present? 

(2) You want to make the destination volume exactly the same as the source volume even if that means some files will be deleted on the destination volume?

(3) Assuming you already have some files on the destination volume how were they initially copied to this destination volume?

> which will preserve all the flags.

It is a good idea to be clear about which meta data is being preserved and how the copy is going to take place. In addition, it is also a good idea to check that the copy has preserved the meta data you are expecting. 

For example, if it is important that you preserve hard links from the source volume on the destination volume then it is imperative that you use the '--hard-links' rsync option. Also, if you use the '--hard-links' option then it is important that the destination volume has a file system which will support hard links. Once the copy has completed you should then check that the hard links have been copied across as you expected.

Another example is symbolic links and how they are to preserved. There are various rsync options which will change the way symbolic links are handled. Quoted below is a snippet from the rsync man page.

>  -l, --links                 copy symlinks as symlinks
>  -L, --copy-links            transform symlink into referent file/dir
>      --copy-unsafe-links     only "unsafe" symlinks are transformed
>      --safe-links            ignore symlinks that point outside the tree
>  -k, --copy-dirlinks         transform symlink to dir into referent dir
>  -K, --keep-dirlinks         treat symlinked dir on receiver as dir

If you are still unsure of how to proceed then please let me know.

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