Cloning PXI(e) Controller Hard Drive

Updated Oct 24, 2020



  • PXI Controller

Operating System

  • Windows
  • PharLap
  • NI Linux Real-Time

I have multiple PXI(e) controllers and chassis. To save software installation time and effort, I would like to install the required software on one PXI(e) controller, clone the controller image, and deploy it to other controllers. How do I do this? 

This can be done in different ways depending on the PXI(e) controller Operating System:

Real Time OS: To clone your RT drive, use the NI Replication and Deployment (RAD) Utility. This utility provides a turn-key solution for automated RT image deployment, replication, and management.

Windows OS: All Windows embedded controllers will have an OEM version of Acronis True Image installed.
  1. Use the Acronis True Image tool to create an image of the Windows drive or entire hard disk and store it to a specific location.
  2. Use the Acronis True Image tool to deploy the created image to multiple embedded controller drives or hard disks.

Additional Information

Note for cloned images on Windows: 
  • NI recommends only using cloned images if you have the exact same controller model (i.e. PXIe-8135).  Images from other controller models or revisions of the same model (check part number) could result in software corruption and/or unexpected behavior.
  • Also, NI recommends using Acronis True Image, because it is a tested scenario. Results of cloning with other software were not tested and therefore are unknown. 

If you experience issues, install Windows from scratch onto the controller and use a batch installer to install the specific software and drivers needed.  For more information please see Creating a Custom Installer with the NI Batch Installer Builder.