Ghosting a linux ssd into a 'very similar' laptop


OK, I have a Dell E7470 laptop with SSD and have installed SUSE 15.1. Now my wife is overseas and is trying to buy the same / very similar laptop model. I want to give her the installation as I have setup quite a bit detailed stuff for her. I was planning to bring the laptop with me on a travel, but that is not happening now. So I am thinking if there is a procedure to ghost the installation from my laptop to her laptop via a cloud. To simplify I would take the ssd out of my laptop, create an image file, upload it to the cloud, my wife picks it up, plugs the ssd from the laptop into a USB case and hooks it up to her PC and flashes it. End goal is for her to use the ssd with the OS in her laptop (as boot). How would that all work in detail?


That would be a large amount of data (several GB). Clonezilla is one of many utilities available that could help here.

This may be of interest to you as well

I successfully clonezilla my E7470 to E7470
then clonezilla my E7470 to a 7480 (different ssd type 2.5" to m.2) no issues
then clonezilla my 7480 to a 7490 (different m.2 ssd to nvme) no issues.

Each time the new drive was larger than the old. I use gparted from a bootable USB to increase the size.

I only use ext4 partitions - I know they are reliable.

If you have USB adapters for the new or old drive you can dd from the old image to the new image and go from there if the old is smaller than the new.
All 3 of my Dell 7490 are dd images of the 1st 7490 I imaged. As nvme they are a lot faster than the SSD m.2 drives.


Good pointer. Clonezilla looks good. So would clone the OS in my laptop to an image file first using a clonezilla live USB boot (clonezilla docs show that the image is some kind of directory which can be put into a zip file). Then upload the zip file to cloud storage where my wife can retrieve it and then she’ll need to run clonezilla live from similar USB image and write to the target disk in her laptop. The creation of the clonezilla live USB thumb drive via rufus looks simplest to me. Any recommendations?


You are looking at a very large file - probably 10 gb or more.
If you use a file sharing service - then the transfer is very easy but most limit size to 4 or 8 gb.

You might be better off sending the image on a USB drive - Walmart sells a 64GB for under $15.00 that you could mail to here.

Clonezilla can stream from one machine to another - I would want to use SSH for encryption to do that I thing that Clonezilla will let you go to a shell and ssh to another computer and then open up the ports to do machine to machine.

The easiest and safest way is to get another drive and clone your computer drive to it and mail that drive to your wife to install in her computer.