Duplicating a hard disk

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http://unix.stackexchange.com – I'd like to simply duplicate a hard disk drive to another hard disk drive of the same size. I know I can simply do: dd if=/dev/sda of=/dev/sdb (or whatever the names of the drives are in /dev). Is there a better tool for this which will show me visual progress? If I'm only using 30GB of the drive, will it only take as long as it takes to transfer 30GB or will it take as long as the drive capacity? (HowTos)