Good way to clone a hard drive to a ssd?


I decided to upgrade my 1 T harddrive to a ssd and ordered the appropriate hardware, cables, flash drive and so on. I found a tutorial on Youtube which advocates a straightforward process that uses free downloadable software to partition the new drive; that software is "The minitool partition wizard". I should end up with a perfect clone of the old drive and will not need to re-register with Windows. I don't have any plans for the old drive, and may format it and install it as a backup "someday".

I intend to connect the new ssd drive via usb to my desktop computer, copy over the entire disk, remove the old disk and install the new one. (The flash drives are one for a file back up and another for a boot drive, just in case). As I understand it the new drive, installed in place of and NOT in addition to the old one should boot up at once, and if it does not, I can replace it with the old drive and start over.

I'm moved hard drives around once or twice, and installed a new power supply, and I'm thinking I can do this. Any words of warning?


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Richard (Vero Beach, Florida)

I think you have your bases covered. And like you say, if an error occurs during the cloning process, you've still got your old drive.

Just don't clone in the wrong direction, new drive to old drive... just kidding. But I bet it's been done.

I hadn't heard of the clone tool you mention but I'm sure there's plenty of good ones I haven't heard of.

Lately, I've been using Macrium Reflect for backups. If I did a clone right now I'd probably use that, just because I already have it.

The last clone I did (Windows on a spin drive --> SSD) I used the Linux tool "dd". That worked fine except the target drive was just a few bytes larger that the source drive so I had to use another tool to resize. It wasn't a big deal but Macrium Reflect would have taken care of that for me. That was a new computer that had Windows on a spin drive. Restarts were painfully slow. Once I moved Windows to an SSD it was like a different machine. Quick like it should have been.

Have fun.

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Mike C

AOMEI Partition Assistant does a fine job of want you want to do.

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This is a big *Thank you* and an update to those who offered encouragement and comments.

1. I ended up using MiniTool and it did just what it was supposed to. I had hooked the new SSD to the computer with a USB cable, but even then the transfer only took an hour (no videos, not very many photos).

I had a little trouble inside the tower because of a dearth of cables. HP Pavillions apparently don't waste an inch of wire. Because of that I wasn't able to hook up a spare drive as I'd hoped, but I may be able to get more cables in there "someday", and next time I buy a desktop, if I do, I'll look inside for more flexibility.

Also had some trouble mounting the new drive. The 2.5" adapter I picked up at BB Big Box wasn't suitable, but I ended up being able to mount directly to the internal framework once I found suitable screws. I probably could have gotten away with a zip strip or such, but it would have screamed "amateur" too loud ...

As it happens I also had a drive from an older Gateway, and wanted to see if anything could be recovered from it. So while I had my box apart I plugged in that drive, booted it with the USB boot disk I'd made for this project, and got it to respond to the recovery disks that came with it. I lost all the files, but we had most of those backed up from before, so sooner or late I'll try to restore those.

So all in all I took Richard's advice and had fun, and now my wife thinks I'm a genius. Thanks again!


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