Transfer boot drive from ssd to external hdd and back

I need to wipe my ssd boot drive because I can't shrink the volume. I have over 40gb of space left and have tried all the online tips to get a hard drive to shrink but no luck.

How do I preserve the data on the ssd through this process?
I want to wipe the ssd but put the data back on it afterwards.

I know simply copying the data from it and transferring it back doesn't work, right? It wouldn't boot if I did that. Thanks
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  1. Let's back up a little bit. What's the issue, and what are you actually trying to do?
  2. Hi, thanks, I am trying to shrink the volume on my C drive to create a partition for intel rapid start. But windows says there is no space available to shrink, even though there are many GB free. I understand there must be a file stopping windows from reading the space as free. So I thought I would wipe the SSD and then restore it to see if windows recognised I could shrink the volume. Is this doable, and sane? Windows should at least recognise there is space to create an 8gb partition, anyway.
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