How to Clone Hard Drive with Macrium Reflect Clone Software?

Written byChristinaUpdated on Jul 03, 2024
Gerhard Chou
Approved byGerhard Chou

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How to clone computer disk to an external hard drive by using Macrium Reflect? In the fast-paced world of digital technology, keeping your data safe is like putting on a seatbelt - you have to! Imagine that your computer crashes out of the blue, and all of your important files are lost forever. That sounds scary, right? That's where Macrium Reflect comes in like a superhero, giving you a safe way to copy your whole system to an external drive.

What is cloning, though? It's not a sci-fi idea; it's just like making a copy of your hard drive to ensure your files are safe and ready to go when needed. Today, we will explain the process of using Macrium Reflect to clone to an external drive. Hold on tight because data security just got a lot more fun!

clone hard drive with Macrium Reflect

Benefits of Cloning with Macrium Reflect

Before getting into how to use Macrium Reflect to clone to an external drive, it's essential to know why cloning is critical. Copying files to an outside place is often part of traditional backups, which can take time and lead to mistakes. By cloning, on the other hand, you make a copy of a disk or partition, including the operating system, programs, and files.

There are several benefits to this amount of replication:

Quick Recovery from Disasters: If your system fails, having a cloned drive makes it easy to get back up and running quickly, reducing downtime and the chance of losing data.

Consistency of Data: Cloning makes sure that all of your files, settings, and setups are kept, which keeps your system's integrity.

Make it easy to move: Moving to a new hard drive or SSD is easy with cloning because you don't have to reinstall programs or move things by hand.

Clone Hard Drive with Macrium Reflect

Macrium Reflect is popular with new and experienced users because it is easy to use and has many valuable features. Here's how to use Macrium Reflect to clone to an external drive, step by step:

Step 1: Get Macrium Reflect and Set It Up.

First, go to the official page and download the most recent version of Macrium Reflect. Then, follow the steps on the screen to install the software on your computer.

Step 2: Connect the External Hard Drive.

Ensure the external drive you want to use for cloning is connected to your computer and that the operating system knows what it is.

Step 3: Startup Macrium Reflect.

Choose "Clone this disk" from the main menu of Macrium Reflect when you open it.

Step 4: Pick the Drives.

Macrium Reflect will find all of your system's open drives. You must choose the source drive (the one you want to copy) and the destination drive (the one you want to copy to).

Clone Hard Drive with Macrium Reflect

Step 5: Set Up the Options for Cloning.

Before you start the cloning process, you can make different choices. Some of these are changing the layout of the partitions, turning on compression, or setting a time for the cloning process.

Step 6: Begin the Process of Cloning.

After setting up the cloning choices, click "Next" to proceed. Review the list of your choices, and click "Finish" if everything looks good. This will start the cloning process.

Step 7: Monitor the Progress.

Macrium Reflect will show you live updates on how the cloning is going. Some things may make this process take a while, like how big the drive is. You can check the progress and see how much time is left to finish.

Step 8: Verify the Cloning.

The cloning process is finished, and the external drive's data is checked to ensure the clone works. Make sure that the copies of all the files and folders are correct.

Set External Hard Drive As Boot Drive

Set External Hard Drive As Boot Drive

Boot into BIOS, then set the cloned external hard drive as the boot drive for your computer.

💡Best Practices and Guidelines:

When cloning with Macrium Reflect, it is essential to keep the following best practices and guidelines in mind to achieve the best possible results:

  • Keep regular backups: The cloning process is merely one component of an all-encompassing backup plan. To ensure your data is always safe, you should regularly plan backups.
  • Check the Integrity: After cloning, it is necessary to validate the clone's integrity by comparing the files' checksums and validating the clone's operation.
  • When Clones are Updated Periodically: It is essential to update your clones regularly to reflect the changes in your system as it develops and as new data is added.
  • Keep replicas in a safe place: External drives containing clones must be kept in a safe location to prevent theft or damage caused by physical circumstances.

Best Macrium Reflect Alternative - Donemax Disk Clone

If you want to find a more powerful disk cloning program, you can try Donemax Disk Clone. It is a good alternative to Macrium Reflect and can help you clone hard drive on Windows PC and Mac.

Donemax Disk Clone

  • Clone HDD/SSD/external storage device on Windows and macOS.
  • Create bootable clone for PC and Mac.
  • 100% safe and easy-to-use disk cloning program.

How to use Donemax Disk Clone to create a bootable clone for your computer:

Step 1. Download and install Donemax Disk Clone on your computer, then connect an external hard drive to the computer.

Step 2. Open Donemax Disk Clone, choose Disk Clone mode, select the computer as the source disk, select the external hard drive as the destination disk. Click Next.

select the external hard drive as the destination disk

Step 3. Preview the clone layout, then click on Clone button.

click on Clone button

Step 4. Securely clone all data including operating system, programs, user files and setting from your computer disk to the external hard drive, creating a full bootable clone backup.

creating a full bootable clone backup

Step 5. Once the process gets finished, you can check the cloned data on the external hard drive. You also can set the external hard drive as the boot drive.

check the cloned data on the external hard drive

If you want to create a bootable clone for your Mac, just try Donemax Disk Clone for Mac. Then select OS Clone mode to clone all data from the internal SSD to the external hard drive, then make a full bootable clone backup.

create a bootable clone for your Mac


Regarding data protection in the digital world, Macrium Reflect stands out as a hero because it provides a safe way to copy files to external drives. Users can protect their important files well by understanding why cloning is essential and following the easy-to-follow steps given.

Users can keep their data safe by following best practices and regularly updating clones. Accept Macrium Reflect's power and enjoy the peace of mind of knowing your data is safe.

Donemax Disk Clone is a good alternative to Macrium Reflect. It can securely and completely clone all data from your PC or Mac, and create a bootable clone backup.

Contributing Writer


Christina is the senior editor of Donemax software who has worked in the company for 4+ years. She mainly writes the guides and solutions about data erasure, data transferring, data recovery and disk cloning to help users get the most out of their Windows and Mac. She likes to travel, enjoy country music and play games in her spare time.

Gerhard Chou
Editor in chief

Gerhard Chou

In order to effectively solve the problems for our customers, every article and troubleshooting solution published on our website has been strictly tested and practiced. Our editors love researching and using computers and testing software, and are willing to help computer users with their problems