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Upgrading HDD to SSD on Laptop

This is a discussion on Upgrading HDD to SSD on Laptop within the Hard Drive Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. Hello all. I'm looking to upgrade the HDD on my laptop to an SSD drive. Current HDD is 500GB SATA


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Old 12-28-2018, 09:38 PM   #1
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Hello all. I'm looking to upgrade the HDD on my laptop to an SSD drive. Current HDD is 500GB SATA III. I plan to upgrade to an SSD of the same capacity or higher. What will I need in order to make this upgrade possible without having to reinstall Windows OS?

I lost the restore discs that came with the laptop so I don't have the OS disc to reinstall it which is why I want to upgrade to the new drive without having to reinstall windows.

Would disk cloning be the best option in this scenario? If so, what software do you all recommend? Possibly something free but if I have to buy a license, something that is not going to break the bank.

Lastly, will I need any hardware components such as disk docking station or something to clone from current drive to the new SSD?

Thanks guys.
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Old 12-29-2018, 02:17 AM   #2
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You will need either an External USB HDD or a USB Adapter, Dock or Enclosure.
There are many good cloning programs, but a good free one is Macrium Reflect.
Install Macrium or whatever cloning program you choose. Create a bootable USB Flash drive of the program so you can clone the old HDD outside of Windows.
Boot off of the USB Flash Drive, Hook up a USB HDD and in Macrium, create an Image file of the old C: drive save it to the USB HDD. Swap the old HDD with the new SSD drive, boot off of the USB Flash drive and restore the Image file to the new SSD
OR Boot off of the Flash drive, plug the new SSD Drive into the computer via a USB Adapter, Dock or Enclosure and in Macrium choose to Clone the C: drive to the SSD. Then swap out the old HDD with the SSD.
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Old 12-29-2018, 03:06 AM   #3
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Some SSD's come with a migration kit or you'll have to order it separately. It's a USB to SATA cable to connect the new SSD outside of the laptop and move all your data (clone it as stated by SF).

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Old 12-29-2018, 03:50 AM   #4
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To add to what the good folks have said, you can alternatively attach the old hdd and SSD internally to a desktop computer then clone as advised. Just make sure the desktop DOESN'T try to boot from the HDD to be cloned.
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Old 12-29-2018, 11:27 PM   #5
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Thank you all for your feedback and recommendations. Have any of you used MiniTool Partition Wizard for cloning a drive?

https://www.partitionwizard.com/free...n-manager.html
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Old 01-01-2019, 10:52 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stancestans View Post
To add to what the good folks have said, you can alternatively attach the old hdd and SSD internally to a desktop computer then clone as advised. Just make sure the desktop DOESN'T try to boot from the HDD to be cloned.
You know I have to say I have been doing this procedure for years for clients and this is so much simpler and I am embarrassed I never thought of it, thanks for great idea, that's what makes forums great!
Stan!
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:29 PM   #7
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Install Macrium Reflect Free. Create the rescue DVD or flash drive.

Use Macrium to make an image backup of the complete current HDD. Remove it, install the SSD then restore the backup image to the SSD by booting the Macrium rescue DVD/flash drive.
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Old 01-01-2019, 09:29 PM   #8
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I don't recall EUFI Bios or EUFI Secure Boot mentioned yet....
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Old 01-02-2019, 05:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by traincompbox View Post
I don't recall EUFI Bios or EUFI Secure Boot mentioned yet....
It's UEFI. What about it?
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Old 01-02-2019, 06:52 AM   #10
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Just so you know restoring a backup this way would take longer than a clone because you first have to make the backup and would less likely work because restoring a normal backup to a new drive is usually less likely to boot than a clone because it is more complicated. Unless using "universal" image software, which is never free version, chance of success is far less.


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Install Macrium Reflect Free. Create the rescue DVD or flash drive.

Use Macrium to make an image backup of the complete current HDD. Remove it, install the SSD then restore the backup image to the SSD by booting the Macrium rescue DVD/flash drive.
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Old 01-02-2019, 03:45 PM   #11
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I've done it both ways many times. If the restore has problems booting, using the Macrium Fix boot problems tool from the Rescue disk almost always resolves it.

The real advantage I see is you don't need a 2nd PC or USB adapter. You do need a external hard drive but you should already have one as doing backups should be a normal part of your maintenance.
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Old 01-03-2019, 10:38 AM   #12
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Just an additional thought. Because it sounds like you are going to be cloning an existing drive it is likely you will be cloning some registry bloat files and your new drive may not run as optimally as you would like. Once the cloning is completed and your new drive is installed in your Laptop I would recommend you immediately backup all of your personal files (unless you did that prior to the cloning) and then have Windows 10 do a full Reset (if your OS is Windows 10), where they delete all personal files and programs and then it will reinstall a pristine version of Windows 10. You will be good to go after that.
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Old 01-03-2019, 11:16 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EagleTech View Post
Just an additional thought. Because it sounds like you are going to be cloning an existing drive it is likely you will be cloning some registry bloat files and your new drive may not run as optimally as you would like. Once the cloning is completed and your new drive is installed in your Laptop I would recommend you immediately backup all of your personal files (unless you did that prior to the cloning) and then have Windows 10 do a full Reset (if your OS is Windows 10), where they delete all personal files and programs and then it will reinstall a pristine version of Windows 10. You will be good to go after that.
The laptop is running Windows 7 Pro. Never got to do the free upgrade to Windows 10 when MS was offering it. Thanks for the suggestion though.
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Old 01-20-2019, 07:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spunk.funk View Post
Boot off of the USB Flash Drive, Hook up a USB HDD and in Macrium, create an Image file of the old 😄 drive save it to the USB HDD. Swap the old HDD with the new SSD drive, boot off of the USB Flash drive and restore the Image file to the new SSD
OR Boot off of the Flash drive, plug the new SSD Drive into the computer via a USB Adapter, Dock or Enclosure and in Macrium choose to Clone the 😄 drive to the SSD. Then swap out the old HDD with the SSD.
Thanks spunk.funk, I ended up doing this when I replaced my HDD with a SSD in my laptop. The computer wouldn’t recognize the Samsung SSD. Once I got that figured out and the laptop assigned a drive letter to the new SSD your solution worked perfectly.
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Old 01-21-2019, 02:31 PM   #15
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I forgot to mention when you hook up the New SSD in Windows you must go to Disk Management and Initialize the driver GPT then Format it. Then you can restore an Image file to it.
Or if you attach the SSD via USB and boot into the Macrium Reflect Boot USB Flash drive you can choose to Clone the internal HDD to the external SSD without having to initialize or format it.
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Old 01-21-2019, 02:32 PM   #16
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You are welcome!
I forgot to mention when you hook up the New SSD in Windows you must go to Disk Management and Initialize the driver GPT then Format it. Then you can restore an Image file to it.
Or if you attach the SSD via USB adapter or dock and boot from the Macrium Reflect Boot USB Flash drive you can choose to Clone the internal HDD to the external SSD without having to initialize or format it.
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Old 01-22-2019, 05:02 PM   #17
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I had the SSD drive connected to the laptop via USB3 port. Drive would not be recognized by the system. Had to go into Diskpart and assign a drive letter before I could go into Disk Management initialize and format the drive. From there I was able to follow your instructions and swap out the drive.
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Old 01-23-2019, 12:37 AM   #18
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You could have done that in Disk Management as well. But Diskpart is the best way.
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