By AOMEI / Last Updated June 3, 2020

Why use Clonezilla to clone larger disk to smaller disk?

As an open source free software, Clonezilla can be used to clone or backup hard drive. Since it works with most of the operating systems largely used in company or home, many people love to use Clonezilla, especially when they want to upgrade hard drive with a new one. In this case, you can use Clonezilla disk to disk clone feature to clone a hard drive to another without reinstalling Windows and programs.

However, the destination drive to replace the old one is not generally the same size or larger than the source drive. Since the excellent performance of SSDs and they have become increasingly cheaper recently, many users want to clone larger HDD to smaller SSD using Clonezilla. If you happen to in this situation, you can make some extra efforts to get this done.

Clone Disk

Make Clonezilla clone to smaller drive possible

Officially, Clonezilla requires the destination partition to receive the clone to be equal or larger than the source one. Therefore, the only way to get this done is to shrink the source partition to fit the destination partition.

Clonezilla clone to smaller disk:

Step 1. Open Disk Management in Windows 10/8/7. If you are running Linux system, you can boot your computer from GParted media.

Step 2. Right click the source partition and click “Shrink Volume” and follow the wizard to shrink the partition.

Step 3. When you get that done, reboot to Clonezilla.

Step 4. Select the source disk and destination disk.

Step 5. Choose EXPERT mode and enable the “-icds” option. You need to also choose the option"Resize partitional table proportionally" in one of the following menus.

Extra Parameters

Step 6. Configure other Clonezilla options if needed and then type in “y” to confirm and start the clone.

In this way, you should be able to clone larger drive to smaller drive without receiving the error like Clonezilla failed to create a partition table on this disk. However, some users may feel this is too complicated and cumbersome. In addition, it also needs lots of steps to finish the whole cloning process. And it’s possible to meet Clonezilla failed to clone issue due to the bad sector on your disk.

Fortunately, you can try another freeware to clone larger drive to smaller drive directly without extra preparation. It just needs only a few clicks to finish the job. Please keep reading to learn more.

An easier way to clone larger hard drive to smaller drive

AOMEI Backupper Standard, a free backup, restore and clone software for Windows 10/8/7, allows you to clone hard drive to another one within a few clicks.

  • It lets you clone larger drive to smaller drive directly. You can easily clone larger HDD to smaller SSD or clone SSD to larger SSD.

  • It provides 2 different cloning solutions: disk clone and partition clone. If you want to clone disk with different partition style or perform system clone, you need to upgrade to AOMEI Backupper Professional.

  • It has a user-friendly GUI compared to Clonezilla’s text-based interface. It’s simple enough to achieve the clone job.

Check the following steps to see how to clone larger HDD to smaller SSD.

Step 1. Download and run it on your computer.

Step 2. At the main interface, click Clone and then select Disk Clone.

Disk Clone

Step 3. Select the source disk, and click Next to continue.

Select Source Disk

Step 4. Select your new hard drive as the destination to clone the source drive to. Then click Next to continue.

Select Destination Disk

Step 5. Check the operation summary and click Start Clone.

Start Clone

1. Edit partitions allows you to resize partitions. Under this option, you can choose Copy without resizing partitions, Add unused space to all partitions or Manually adjust partition size. The last two features are only available in AOMEI Backupper Professional.
2. Select Sector by sector clone if you want to clone every sector no matter it is used or not, even it’s a blank sector or a logical bad sector.
3. If the target disk is an SSD, check SSD Alignment to improve the speed of reading and writing as well as prolong the service life of SSD.

In a short while, AOMEI Backupper will complete the cloning process, and then you can unplug the hard drive and boot from the cloned drive. Therefore, you do not have to do such tricks to make Clonezilla clone larger disk to smaller disk if you try AOMEI Backupper.


To let Clonezilla clone to smaller disk, you need to shrink the source partition to fit the destination partition. Or you can just try AOMEI Backupper to achieve the goal without any complicated operation.

Besides disk to disk cloning, AOMEI Backupper also offers various backup options including system/disk/partition/file backup to keep your data safe. You can also create bootable disk to help you boot your computer when a disaster happens. Go for AOMEI Backupper right now!

If you want to protect unlimited computers within your company, you can pick AOMEI Backupper Technician. With the inbuilt AOMEI Image Deploy tool, you are also allowed to deploy/restore system image file on server-side computer to multiple client-side computers over network.