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Solved Disk hardware collision!

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by grissom, Sep 12, 2018.

  1. grissom

    grissom Thread Starter

    Apr 14, 2006
    Couldn't decide whether this post belongs in Windows 10 or Hardware, sorry.

    I have 2 authentic Windows 10 installations on 2 different hard drives. Over the years, I have backed them up (& restored them, using Easeus and Macrium Reflect Free version). I have also converted them both from MBR disks to GPT disks.

    I have found for some time that if I try to use them both in a desktop P.C. the boot records of the one not used to boot gets its boot partition 'destroyed' by Windows & will not boot unless repaired by Macrium.

    Now I find, (by putting one of them into a 'dock'), that I get the message (under Manage, storage, disk management): - Offline (The disk is offline because it has a signature collision with another disk that is online).

    Can anyone advise how I can manually change the 'signature' of one of the disks please? This presumably will allow me to put both into the same P.C. and choose from which to boot (save swapping them out to update, etc.).

    I can only assume that, being virtually identical, I have restored one or possibly both of the disks from the wrong image - (image of the other disk) and possibly both have the same disc 'number'/identity?

    I hope that this is resolvable. Thank you for any assistance.
  2. Oddba11


    May 12, 2011
    First Name:
    More likely that regardless of which drive you boot from, it sees the same OS on the other disk and is changing/updating files causing the issue. I've seen users with different OS's on different disks on a single PC, I've not seen the same OS on different disks. This will very likely be an OS issue, not a hardware issue. Sorry that I can't be more help.
  3. grissom

    grissom Thread Starter

    Apr 14, 2006
    Hi, Thanks.
    I've been reading about the problem. Apparently, both disks have the same 'signature', (meaning the same disk I.D.). Although they are both pucker - one upgraded free from Windows 8.1 Ultimate and one upgraded free from Windows 7 Ultimate, at some time or another I must have restored one of the disks from the wrong image,- changing the disk signature to that of the other disk!
    I do keep them pretty much updated to the same degree and they are almost undistinguishable looking at the Windows system onscreen.
    All I need to know now is how to change the signature on one of the disks - and apparently amend the boot records too. Otherwise, although I may be able to give them different disk signatures, apparently the booting won't complete because of the signature change.

    Can anyone tell me the solution to that please?

    Many thanks.
  4. grissom

    grissom Thread Starter

    Apr 14, 2006
    Hello again,

    I'm unsure whether this query is in the incorrect forum; whether no-one has an answer, or the subject is of little interest - so I am posting the answer myself.

    BTW, my prvious post was relevant to MBR disks only, not GPT disks and can safely be thrown away for this purpose!

    Here is the way to resolve conflicts with 2 GPT disks having the same signature, so that both will be read by Windows and not have one 'offline'. (I've done it)! First, Make a backup of your current O/S - or C: Drive at least! Then follow these links:-

    https://kb.macrium.com/KnowledgebaseArticle50151.aspx This article re-initialises an existing disk, gives it a different signature and explains how to copy an image of your backed-up C: (and any other backed-up partitions) to the new Blank GPT Disk.

    https://kb.macrium.com/KnowledgebaseArticle50151.aspx This article explains how to make an MBR or GPT disc bootable.

    For both the links, you will need to have existing Macrium Backups and a Macrium Win P.E. UEFI disk to boot from ( I think that a UEFI Win P.E. Disk is only possible with 64Bit O/S).

    I hope this is helpful. Thanks.
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