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A1.5: Duplicating SD card

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    One of the advantages of the Raspberry Pi operating system being hosted on microSD cards is that once you have a Pi set up and running the way you want, you can duplicate the microSD card and run it in a different Pi.  So for example, say you want to set up a bunch of Pis to monitor the pH of a solution.  Instead of having to load the programs on each Pi you simply set up one Pi, then copy the image to your desktop, and from the desktop make copies of that image, which you can then transfer to multiple Pis. Instructions for installing the Raspberry PI OS are in section 1.1.3 and after you developed some scripts you want to make copies of the operating system and any libraries and programs you have added to that Pi.  We will break this into several simple steps.

    1. Make an image of your Pi and store on your personal computer.
    2. Format a new micro-SD card
    3. Transfer the image to the new formatted micro-SD card
    4. Place the new card in a Raspberry Pi and test to be sure it properly runs.

    But first you need to instal Win32DiskImager.

    Installing Win32DiskImager

    In this part of the lab, you will prepare your computer to be able to create disk images on microSD cards that you are going to be using with your Raspberry Pi computers. A disk image is a copy of the entire contents of a storage device, such as a hard drive, DVD, or CD. The disk image represents the content exactly as it is on the original storage device, including both data and structure information.

    Win32DiskImager is not included in the Windows operating system, so we need to install it.  To do so, go to:

    This website will automatically start to download the file to your downloads directory. Once you download you need to install it:

    1. Run the executable file win32diskimager-1.0.0-install in your download directory
    2. Accept agreement and click next
    3. Install in default folder (press next twice)
    4. Create a shortcut desktop icon if you want (I do not) and click next
    5. Click Install and Finish

    Create Image on Personal Computer

    Take the micro-SD card you wish to duplicate out of the Pi and place into the Micro-SD card to USB adapter and then put in a USB port of your personal computer.  Now open Win32Diskmanager from the windows prompt (figure \(\PageIndex{1}\)).

    clipboard_e8b5d0d38f42b144b39aebe2e97520f47.pngFigure \(\PageIndex{1}\): Copy and Paste Caption here. (Copyright; author via source)


    The following steps allow you to make a copy of the image and save them to your personal computer

    1. Put microsd card into USB port of pc
    2. Start Win32 diskimager
    3. DO NOT FORMAT (Windows says it needs to , but Windows does not understand the SD card partitions)
    4. Select the Device (boot partition of microSD card)
    5. Click the folder icon and choose the directory you want to save the image in, then give it a name followed by .img
      clipboard_ef5a004d6770ecde4507c3853f0f88a64.pngFigure \(\PageIndex{2}\): After clicking blue folder the display on right shows, and choose folder to place image in.  Be sure to give .img ending (Belford CC 0.0)
    6. Click the read button.

    This will probably take half an hour.

    Clone New SD Card

    1. Format a new micro SD card using SD card formatter (section 1.1.2)
    2. Start Win32 Disk Imager
    3. Click the folder with the image (and click the image)
    4. Make sure the device drive is the one with the microSD card
    5. Click the write button
    clipboard_e0ddf6d02185e2d849453b90685120a9a.pngFigure \(\PageIndex{3}\): Screen capture of using Win32 DiskImager to copy a microSD card. (CC0.0; Belford, 4/13/23)




    A1.5: Duplicating SD card is shared under a not declared license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by LibreTexts.

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