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Transfer Win 8 to SSD from HDD on new desktop

Last response: in Windows 8
December 9, 2013 4:24:42 PM

I am buying a new Dell XPS with Win 8 installed. Can I transfer the OS to a SSD I have purchased? I understand that since the OS is an OEM version I may have trouble.

Best solution

a b * Windows 8
December 9, 2013 4:41:10 PM

*You may wish to PRINT THIS*

The PC doesn't care what drive you clone the data to.

Two issues:
1) The SSD must be LARGE enough after formatting and overprovisioning (about 75% of the reported such as 90GB for a 120GB SSD).

So your USED SPACE on the hard drive should be 80GB or less if buying a 120GB SSD.

2) You need to have AHCI set in the BIOS (not IDE) for the SSD. This can sometimes prevent the SSD from booting properly. If it's ALREADY set to AHCI there's no problem. If it's set to IDE then there is a workaround to fix this you can Google or ask about.

I recommend the Samsung 840 EVO ($90 to $100 for 120GB) as it's a great drive and the Samsung Magician drive can test and apply overprovisioning for you.

There are TWO ways to move to a new drive: CLONING or a Backup/Restore method.
*I've found cloning sometimes failed and I had to create a BACKUP IMAGE to a 3rd drive (or 2nd partition) then RESTORE it to the SSD.

Acronis True Image has a free utility to clone or backup. There are other utilities as well.

1. Ensure enough SPACE on the SSD to clone
2. change IDE to AHCI in BIOS if needed
3. Attach SSD
4. Run cloning software (may reboot, or require to boot from a disc in which case your BIOS boot order needs the DVD drive as the first boot device)
5. If clone SUCCESSFUL, shut down and REMOVE the hard drive
6. Boot to the SSD and make sure it works.

If adding the hard drive back again you may have to go into the BIOS and change the boot order so the SSD is first.

Backup/Restore method:
Very similar to above except you make a BACKUP IMAGE of the hard drive C-drive to another drive or partition, then RESTORE that to the SSD.

*You may have other questions but I'll stop for now.
a b * Windows 8
December 9, 2013 4:45:33 PM


1. This is the free cloning software that worked for me (tried three others) though it oddly didn't work the first time:

2. As a new computer it should already be AHCI in the BIOS so I'll doubt you'll have issues but confirm that it is.

3. As a new PC you'll have no space issue with a 120GB SSD.

4. If you install a Samsung drive do it this way:
a) physically install SSD
b) download Samsung Magician and then apply the FIRMWARE update to the SSD
c) then CLONE
d) then apply overprovisioning to the SSD via Samsung Magician

*With any luck it will be pretty simple.
December 9, 2013 4:48:55 PM

I used Acronis True Image. Worked perfectly.