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Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

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Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Elephone » Tue May 07, 2019 1:21 pm

Hello. I'm installing a new 1TB 2.5" SSD tonight, and a little worried about potential risks when cloning my 1TB HDD containing the system partition. I wouldn't want to get a slap in the face for being cautious, although the HDD is approaching 10 years, well, since I bought the PC.

The HDD with the system drive also has partitions for D:\\ E:\\ and F:\\ which I presume are cloned along with the system partition C:\\

After I've cloned it to the SSD, will I still be able to keep my original system drive intact so I can boot from it in case of any permanent failure of the SSD?

I presume I need to change the SSD clone to C:// so new software installations will presume the correct drive. Will I simply alter the letter of the original HDD to G://?

Do partitions enhance performance of SSDs in the same way as HDDs, or does it make no difference?

Any decent free disc cloning software out there in case there's not one included?

Any other advice or words of caution?

Thanks
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby curlybob43 » Tue May 07, 2019 1:35 pm

Hi Elephone,

Don't worry too much about this, my advice would be to use a dedicated cloning software to do what you described. I had 2 HDDs and a SSD to work with, so here is how I handled it;

- Copied and moved all of HDD 2 contents onto HDD1 - HDD1 now contained ALL OS, files and programmes
- Cloned HDD1 to HDD2 (for safety and back up, not necessary but for safety)
- Cloned HDD1 to SSD (now both SSD1 and HDD1 will be EXACTLY the same, if SSD1 doesnt boot then HDD1 will remain intact, or HDD2 if you made another copy).
- Restart PC and enter BIOS
- Enable boot from SSD as 1st priority
- Boot from SSD to ensure everything is working fine
- Format/clear HDD1 & HDD2
- Copy files back over to your preference between SSD/HDD1

This literally worked 1st time for me with no issues, I used the free EaseUS cloning software. The partitions etc were automatically handled by the software. I would just make sure you have your head wrapped around it before you give it a go, but i'm no PC expert and I managed it without a hiccup! My PC performance is so much better than it was running HDDs, you will be asking yourself why you didn't do this sooner for such little cost.

Hope that helps

Joe
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby James Perrett » Tue May 07, 2019 1:57 pm

curlybob43 wrote:- Format/clear HDD1 & HDD2

I'd wait a few weeks before doing that - most electronic failures are either in the first few weeks of use or many years later. I'd wait until I was pretty sure that I was past that first phase before re-using the disks.
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby curlybob43 » Tue May 07, 2019 2:03 pm

James Perrett wrote:
curlybob43 wrote:- Format/clear HDD1 & HDD2

I'd wait a few weeks before doing that - most electronic failures are either in the first few weeks of use or many years later. I'd wait until I was pretty sure that I was past that first phase before re-using the disks.

Probably would be good practice James, but some of us live life on the edge ;)
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Pete Kaine » Tue May 07, 2019 5:07 pm

Elephone wrote:The HDD with the system drive also has partitions for D:\\ E:\\ and F:\\ which I presume are cloned along with the system partition C:\\

Yeah, it should keep them as long as you disconnect all those other drivers before booting off the new one.

After I've cloned it to the SSD, will I still be able to keep my original system drive intact so I can boot from it in case of any permanent failure of the SSD?

Yes. Either create a boot menu (easy enough via google) or switch between drives in the boot order in the BIOS, which is probably easier given how little you may need that second disk.

I presume I need to change the SSD clone to C:// so new software installations will presume the correct drive. Will I simply alter the letter of the original HDD to G://?

Windows is always on C:\ drive as far Windows is concerned and it'll change the drive letters around to make it so. The difference from memory is that before windows 10 it would often reassign letters and would often knock out random drives in doing so, meaning you had to go in and reassign drive letters occasionally after a reboot.

Windows 10 is a lot better and tends to be smart enough to always assign the C:\ letter to the boot drive and then it should reserve the same letter for the second OS.

So if both drives are C & D they should still be C & D after booting into the other drive, just reversed. This means you shouldn't come upon the missing drive scenario in quite the same way in W10 as older OS builds.

Do partitions enhance performance of SSDs in the same way as HDDs, or does it make no difference?

No difference. We used to partition in order to reserve the fastest part of the platter for audio, but with no platter we have no concerns about spin up time.

I still partition my OS drive for ease of recovery / keeping the second partition safe. Past that, not much point in doing with solid state.

Any decent free disc cloning software out there in case there's not one included?

Have you checked the drive manufacturers site? What drive is it? Samsung has a tool and I'm pretty sure most of the other well-known SSD makers do if you check their download sections.

All five tools listed here are great: https://www.techradar.com/uk/news/best- ... g-software and personally I use Clonezilla when I don't have Windows to hand and Reflekt when I do.

Any other advice or words of caution?

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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Elephone » Tue May 07, 2019 6:27 pm

Thanks for the replies. Can I just clone the system partition rather than the whole drive? I might take the opportunity to re-organise my partitions then copy my project files separately. It's all a bit of a mess.
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Elephone » Tue May 07, 2019 7:35 pm

Yes it's a Samsung 860 QVO, so I get free software to do the job. I'll use that. Thanks.
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Pete Kaine » Wed May 08, 2019 10:21 am

Yeah, the Samsung software is great, should do you fine.

In regards to the other question, you might just have to try it and see what happens. Iif you copy only the OS partition then it might work or you might not be able to move the bootloader with it, so it might not be bootable but this is depending on the source you're taking it from and a number of factors from the originating system setup and configuration arrangement.

Should it not work then you can botch around this cloning just that partition, booting into the old OS, running "BCDedit" (tool from Neosoft) and then using it to either create a fresh bootloader on the new disk (a basic one should make it function) or copying the old one from the old drive to the new drive.

Or you can do that same process by hand, where you’ll need to get into the Command Prompt with the help of installation disc or repair disc. Then, type these commands successively and press Enter after: bootrec.exe > bootrec.exe /fixmbr > bootrec.exe /fixboot > bootrec.exe /scanos > bootrec.exe /rebuildbcd.

Ultimately, you can just clone the whole drive, delete the second partition and then organize as you were planning to do so. Might take a little longer, but the extra work is automated, so less potential messing about for you.
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Elephone » Wed May 08, 2019 8:03 pm

Hi. The Samsung software didn't seem to work. It said, "Drive not supported" (for all the drives I had, incidentally, including the new Samsung). I don't really understand. Perhaps it's because my motherboard is older, or because I still use Windows 7.

The drive is a Samsung 860 QVO, my computer spec is as follows:

Intel® Core™i5 Processor i5-750 (2.66GHz) 8MB Cache

ASUS® P7H55D-M EVO: DDR3, 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x PCI, 2 x PCI-Ex 2.0

8GB CORSAIR DDR3 DUAL-DDR3 1333MHz

Anyway, I managed to get AOMEI Backupper to work hopefully, although last night I just let it run and then turn itself off. It seemed to complete the job. I'll try booting it up when I get home.

Can I just change the booting order and leave my old drive as it is? Some people say disconnect it, but I want the other partitions for storage.

Thanks
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Pete Kaine » Thu May 09, 2019 10:16 am

Elephone wrote:The Samsung software didn't seem to work. It said, "Drive not supported" (for all the drives I had, incidentally, including the new Samsung). I don't really understand. Perhaps it's because my motherboard is older, or because I still use Windows 7.

The drive is a Samsung 860 QVO, my computer spec is as follows:

The Samsung software is hardcoded to only work when cloning to or from a Samsung SSD, so if it isn't recognising the QVO then it would grey out everything else too.

The QVO is rather new tech from them, so it's possible the version of the application you have there hasn't gained support for it yet. I would have expected the latest download to have it covered though, so this is a bit weird if that's what you have there.

Ultimately, if something else worked then great. I posted the link that had five, rather than just name one as honestly I see clones fail all the time for really random reasons and it's not all that unheard of to go through a few tools first before finding the one that gets it right.

Elephone wrote:Can I just change the booting order and leave my old drive as it is? Some people say disconnect it, but I want the other partitions for storage.

Aye, just change the booting order, it's fine. That also allows you to quickly switch it back should you have the need to access the old OS version in the future. As I think someone else noted already, I'm all for keeping it as a back up of the OS for a few weeks whilst we see how the new drive handles itself. The bathtub curve is real...
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Re: Installing new SSD and cloning OS from HDD

Postby Elephone » Wed May 22, 2019 9:01 pm

Seems to work fine. Thanks.
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