By Lily / Last update December 2, 2021

Why clone hard drive to SSD?

If you want to upgrade your HDD (hard disk drive), an SSD should be the best choice. SSD is short for solid state drive, which provides a faster speed for Windows, applications and games, etc. In addition, SSD is better considering its high quivery resistance capability, low power consumption standby, low running noise, and low operating temperature. 

When you decide to change with an SSD, you may want to keep all data of HDD as well. And cloning HDD to SSD with a third party software is the simplest way to succeed. Here, we introduce two free tools for you to do so - Clonezilla and an easier alternative AOMEI Backupper.

Clone hard drive to SSD via Clonezilla

Clonezilla, a free and open-source software for disk imaging and cloning, can be used in both Windows and GUN/Linux. When you use Clonezilla to clone HDD to SSD, you are asked to have an SSD at least with equal size of your hard drive. Therefore, if you want to clone to a smaller SSD, such as clone 500GB HDD to 250GB SSD, you may turn to Clonezilla alternative.

Using Clonezilla to clone HDD to SSD in Windows 10/8/7 is a little time-consuming and cumbersome. Please be patient and I'll give you detailed operation as simple as possible.

1. Prepare Clonezilla live.

Here, we put Clonezilla live on the new SSD and use it to boot Clonezilla, to do so, make sure the SSD bootable by creating a boot partition on it. (Or you can put Clonezilla live in bootable CD or USB flash drive so that you can boot it to clone hard drive to SSD.)

2. Boot your Clonezilla live.

  • Insert the new SSD which is bootable with Clonezilla live built in to your machine and boot Clonezilla live.

3. Choose “ToRAM” option in the boot menu.

  • In boot menu, choose “Other modes of Clonezilla live”.

  • Then choose “Clonezilla live (TO RAM, Boot media can be removed later)”. By doing so, all the Clonezilla live file on SSD will be copied to RAM, so the partition of SSD can be released.

4. Choose language.

5. Choose keyboard layout.

6. Choose “Start Clonezilla”.

  • Choose “Start Clonezilla”.

  • Choose “device-device work directly from a disk or partition to a disk or partition”.

  • Choose “Beginner Beginner mode: Accept the default options”.

Select Mode

7. Choose “Disk_to_local_disk”.

8. Choose source disk.

9. Choose target disk.

  • Here you need to select if the source file system needs to be checked or not, just choose to “Skip checking/repairing source file system”.

10. Start cloning.

  • Before doing real cloning, Clonezilla will ask confirmation twice.

  • Then it creates partition table on the destination disk, and asks confirmation about cloning boot loader to target disk, and asks confirmation about cloning data from source disk.

11. Disk is cloned.

  • Choose “Poweroff”, and your machine will be halted. Now your SSD is ready to be used.

Action After Cloning

In fact, it is much difficult for a newbie to clone hard drive to SSD via Clonezilla, and there may be a worse situation that Clonezilla failed to clone. So why not choose another convenient and powerful freeware? Next, we’ll show you how to easily and successfully clone HDD to SSD with AOMEI Backupper.

Clone HDD to SSD with Clonezilla alternative - AOMEI Backupper

Instead of cloning HDD to SSD via Clonezilla, we prefer to recommend AOMEI Backupper to you. AOMEI Backupper is a free and powerful software, which can be used within all Windows editions. Most importantly, it has an easy-to-use interface allowing you to finish the clone task with a few simple steps.

1. Download, install and launch AOMEI Backupper Standard.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

2. Select “Disk Clone” under “Clone” tab.

Disk Clone

3. Select your old hard drive as source disk.

Source Disk

4. Select your SSD as destination disk.

Destination Disk

5. You can preview the operation here. Then, check "SSD Alignment”  to guarantee your SSD is of the best performance and click “Start Clone”.

Start Clone

Tips:

  • “Edit Partitions” has three choices: Copy without resizing partitions, Add unused space to all partitions, and Manually adjust partition size (the last two options are available in AOMEI Backupper Professional).

  • Sector by sector clone” will clone every sector whether it is used or not, even if it’s a blank sector or a logically bad sector.

6. After the clone progress is 100%, click “Finish”.

Finish

Tips:

  • The Standard edition does not support cloning system drive between two GPT disks or between MBR and GPT disks.
  • Compared with SATA SSD disk, NVMe SSD has much faster transfer speed. Thus, it's suggested to clone Windows 10 to NVMe SSD if you don't mind investing a little more.

  •  This software is still an M.2 SSD cloner, so you can use it to migrate Windows 10 to M.2 SSD, clone M.2 SSD to M.2 SSD, etc.

As you see, the job to clone hard drive to SSD can be finished within a few simple steps via AOMEI Backupper not Clonezilla. Apart from disk clone, you can use AOMEI Backupper to do many other things, such as backup Windows 10 to NAS to protect your computer OS. Why not try it now?