The need to replace laptop hard drive
No matter you are using a laptop or a desktop, you may need to perform hard drive replacement sometimes. Following are three common situations when you feel an urge to replace laptop hard drive:
◈ The drive is running out of space, so you want to upgrade to a larger hard drive.
◈ The computer is working slowly and you plan to replace HDD with SSD to boost the speed.
◈ The computer is experiencing a hard drive failure and it can only be fixed by using a new drive.
After replacing the old drive with the new drive, the first thing you should resolve is the operating system, or your computer can’t work at all. Learn how to replace laptop hard drive and reinstall operating system step by step below.
How to replace laptop hard drive and reinstall Windows 10?
Here I’m going to show you three main stages of hard drive replacement on a laptop. Before you start, you may backup needed files on the old hard drive. Then, follow the instructions below:
Stage 1: Remove the old drive
Make sure your laptop is turned off and unplugged before starting, and then follow the steps below:
1. Open the computer case.
2. Locate the hard drive and remove the power cable and data connector from the drive itself.
3. Remove the screws and pull out the old hard drive.
Stage 2: Install the new drive
To put the new drive in, you can simply reverse the steps you already performed in Stage 1.
Stage 3: Reinstall the operating system
After you’ve finished the physical replacement of the old hard drive, you should reinstall the operating system on the new drive. Learn how to install Windows after replacing hard drive thereinafter. Take Windows 10 as an example:
1. Insert Windows 10 installation media and boot from it.
2. Select your Language, Time and Keyboard method and click Next.
3. Click Install now.
4. Wait while setup prepares to copy files. Then, accept the license terms and click Next.
5. Click Custom: Install Windows only (advanced).
6. Select the unallocated drive listed, click New, Apply and then OK.
7. You will get new partitions. Select the primary partition and click Next.
8. Wait while Windows installs. When it is finished, Windows will automatically restart and reboot into setup again.
9. Windows is detecting and installing your hardware. After this is complete, Windows will restart one last time.
After the installation completes, you’ll go through the Out of Box Experience page where you get to configure detailed settings in Windows, including creating a user account, configuring privacy, and installing modern applications, etc.
Easier way of replacing a hard drive without reinstalling Windows
In addition to reinstalling OS, you should also reinstall the apps and games you want, and restore your personal files from backup on the new hard drive before you can use your laptop as usual. That sounds troublesome! Is there a way of replacing laptop hard drive without reinstalling Windows and all the applications?
Disk clone is the answer. AOMEI Backupper Standard, the best free disk cloning software, can help you make it.
Transfer everything from one hard drive to another. It is able to copy the operating system, applications as well as all kinds of files to the new drive.
Enjoy high speed of SSD. If your new drive is an SSD, you are allowed to optimize the performance of the SSD using the SSD Alignment feature.
Wide compatibility. All Windows PC operating systems like Windows 10/8.1/8/7/Vista/XP are supported.
Download this freeware and select Clone > Disk Clone. You can finish data transfer between two drives with a few clicks. After the cloning process is complete, you can remove the old hard drive and install the new drive as mentioned above. Your laptop will be usable immediately.
Now you know how to replace laptop hard drive and reinstall operating system exactly. To save you from the heavy work of OS and application reinstallation, you can clone the old hard drive to the new drive. If you want to clone OS only to the new drive, you may upgrade to AOMEI Backupper Professional and use the System Clone feature. Don’t hesitate to go for this tool! Share this page with your friends if you think it's helpful.