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is cloning a SSD straightforward or a potential disaster?

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#1 wonderland78


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Posted 18 November 2017 - 02:37 PM

My PC is my work computer - contains all my essential software etc.


My SSD is getting on a few years old now, plus it's small so I have a 256 arriving in the mail and want to seamlessly swap the drives.


Weighing up whether to take it to a PC repair shop or clone it myself. At first I figured it would be straightforward but then saw a post where people were saying certain areas of the HD don't copy over. Someone even said just bite the bullet and do a fresh install as cloning is so hit and miss.



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#2 eliasgusta


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Posted 18 November 2017 - 04:09 PM

About a year ago I decided to clone my SSD and I did so with no problems.


I was also thinking should I clone it or just reinstall everything fresh? In my case I have a LOT of stuff installed and a lot of customized settings for everything and it would be a pain to do it all from scratch not to mention the time it would take. So I decided to clone it instead and yes you can also clone windows installs and everything else you have on your system drive with no problems.

Only thing that I can think of as a danger to this process would be a power outage. 


Cloning is easy and straight forward and you shouldn't have any problems. It's also pretty quick so you decide what you think is best, but if I were you I would clone it myself. edit: btw I used easeUS, no regedit or bios settings changed.

Edited by eliasgusta, 18 November 2017 - 04:58 PM.

#3 pabon


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Posted 18 November 2017 - 04:55 PM

Hello Wonderland78.
Please bear with me on this one, I have done this before and I can perhaps help some what.
I cant say this in a short way so I'm going to tell you what I did.
First SSD (Solid state Drive), is pretty good. its rather faster then a normal Hard drive as you already know.
But if your SSD is set up like any normal HHD, then your going to encounter a storage issue after a while.
Solution for this is to set up your SSD to trim. That's what I did to mines and runs like a champ all the time.
Storage remains very low all the time.
To understand what TRIM and set it up look at this page:
On windows 7 or Windows 8 do the following:
Bios: set to ACHI to be
able to support trim
if: Your computer or laptop is has an SSD (Solid State Drive) and you already build your W7 or W8 but the bios is not set to ACHI, do the follwing to correct this.
By not correcting it when you enter BIOS and set your drive to ACHI on reboot you will get the blue screen of death ( A blue screen with white letters text) (BSD).
To correct this do this Boot up to windows as normal
Go to start:
On the run screen type: regedit
Follow this procedure when regedit is open:
Set the start value to : 0 if you see 3 or any other number.
Reboot the Laptop or PC to bios
On the bios set your Hard drive to ACHI, reboot and you will be able to enter Windows with out the BSD.
Note: To extend the life of your SSD do the following:
Optimizing SSD
Defragmentation needs to be disabled.
On run type: Disk Defragmenter:
Schedule:  uncheck Run on Schedule
Uncheck the C drive.
Go to CMD run as administrator.  On command prompt type: fsutil behavior query DisableDeleteNotify(Enter key)
If you see= 0  trim is enabled.
If not then : fsutil behavior query DisableDeleteNotify 0
If not then : will need an upgrade of firmware for SSD drive.
Go to run type :  services  to disable (Superfetch)
Then on start type: Disable  (apply) and (ok).
Then type: regedit
Session Manager
Memory Management,
EnabledPrefectcher   set to = 0 if its on 3
Computer,  right click
select Properties ,
Advance system settings,  on system properties advance click on settings for Performance optionsAdvanceVirtual memory, click on (change)
Uncheck Auto manage page file size for all drives then select No page files click on set (Yes) (OK) (Apply) (ok) .
By doing the above steps your SSD will last longer.
Trim: Since a Solid State Drive is not the same as a regular Hardrive that requires defraging or wiping, your damaging the SSD and cutting its life to a very short term.  Trim is built in to the SSD and supported by Microsoft.  It is a way to wipe areas that are not used. Freeing up that space.
If trim is not enabled, then the SSD will keep storing unneeded data inside the SSD filling up every block until the SSD is no longer usable due to space.  Here is the best way I can describe it.
If trim is not enabled I can as an example type:  The following
The follwing will get stored in a block, but if I want to change the letter : h in the word The, then the letter : h will remain stored in a block after correcting it.
If Trim is enabled, I can type as an example: The following.
But if I change the letter : h in the word The, then Trim will clear that block as if nothing were ever in it.
Allowing more space and having a longer life span.
For those already using SSD, check your system out by following the above instructions.
End of document.
Now if you worked out the above the next step is to put that OS and all the applications and all the documents on a new SSD.
In this case the SSD you ordered.
Here you will need to install a software that will help with this. you will need an external storage case to connect your new SSD.
Software I used is called : Macriume reflect-Free Edition 
Link:  https://www.macrium.com/reflectfree
ontoce you down it and installed it to your PC,  follow the instruction.
question if your using a PC, connect your SSD to that PC and it will be as a secondary.
If its a laptop, the your will need an External Storage case to put your your SSD on and use it as your target to do your back up on.
The process with take a while.
Once completed (Laptop) you can shut down and remove all power connectors and batteries, replace the SSD.
Once done boot up and it will boot up as it did when the old SSD was there.
You will be able to test all your software, and activation key and all should be in tact.
it will look as if no changes were done.
In addition the software.you down loaded will appear on the new SSD which you can uninstall
My test gave me these conclusions:
Boot up : Passed
Application: Passed
Updates: passed
Activated: Passed
Reboot: Passed
Websites favorites: Passed
Documents and images: Passed
check these out as well for your self.
The document shown above are the detail procedures I used to take any OS and put it in another HDD or SDD or vice verse.
Note as your stated above "Certain areas will not copy", using the software I spoke about will prove different.
Best part is that its free and you can do it your self.
Good luck.

Edited by hamluis, 18 November 2017 - 08:36 PM.

#4 pabon


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Posted 18 November 2017 - 04:58 PM

sorry for the dwell types 

Mod Edit:  Fixed - Hamluis.

Edited by hamluis, 18 November 2017 - 08:28 PM.

#5 wonderland78

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Posted 19 November 2017 - 08:44 PM

Thanks guys, will look into these options :)

#6 hamluis



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Posted 20 November 2017 - 07:25 AM

FWIW:  To answer your question...I find cloning a SSD to be no different than cloning a hard drive.  As to your query re potential disasters...everything you do on a computer system is a "potential disaster" if you are not understanding the importance of backing up and the fact that every manmade device is subject to failure, at some time, in some aspect.


Cloning results in an exact duplicate.  If you clone a drive that problems relating to the drive itself...it's likely, IMO, that you will see the impact of those problems on the cloned drive.  If you clone a drive where the Windows install has problems...those problems will also be exhibited on the clone.  If you clone a drive and O/S without problems, you have an exact copy on the cloned drive.



Edited by hamluis, 20 November 2017 - 07:28 AM.

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