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Cloned SSD won't boot

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March 12, 2012 7:17:28 PM

Hi guys. Point me to the thread if this questions has already been answered, but for all my searching through similar problems, I can't seem to find a solution.

So I recently decided to upgrade from a HDD(500gb) to an SSD(90gb). Common story I know. I want to move the OS(Windows 7) from the HDD to the SSD, but I don't have the DVD. No I did not pirate the OS, I just bought the computer refurbished so the OS was pre-installed. Here are my efforts so far:

1. I downloaded DriveImage to clone my HDD (which currently has nothing but the operating system on it) to my SSD. No dice. DriveImage says the SSD has to be as big or larger to clone. I read up on it, and this seems to be a common problem.

2. I downloaded EaseUS Partition Manager, and repartition the HDD to about 25 gb so that it contains only the OS. The partition is now much smaller than my SSD, so I clone the partition onto the SSD with no problem.

Now, here`s the issue. I have a fully functional HDD with Windows 7 on it which I can boot to. I also have, to my knowledge, a perfect clone of all software on the HDD on my SSD, which means that I should be able to boot to it, right? Unfortunately, my computer thinks otherwise.
Whenever I try to boot to the SSD, either by making it the only drive connected to the MB, or by changing the BIOS boot priority, I get the "Please insert a proper boot device" message. I'm pretty much at the end of my HDD/SSD/MB knowledge at this point. Any thoughts?

In case it helps, here are the relevant specs. Let me know if you need more.
-ASUS M588-M mATX AM3+ DDR3 AMD 880G 1PCI-E16 2PCI-E1 1PCI USB3.0 SATA3 DVI HDMI Motherboard
-Seagate Barracuda 7200 500gb SATA Internal HDD
-OCZ Vertex 2 Extended 90gb SATA2 Sandforce SF1200 SSD

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a c 324 G Storage
March 12, 2012 7:51:25 PM

Just make a windows system repair disk -- type system repair disk in the start box -- make the cd with the wizard and put that in your drive when you swap to the cloned disk and it will fix your SRP to use the cloned disk.
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a c 311 G Storage
March 13, 2012 12:00:23 PM

Unfortunately, a perfect clone does not mean that you should be able to boot it. The Windows installation contains drivers specific to your motherboard and hardware which are used at a low level during startup, and changes in what is needed for these drivers will mean that the system will not boot. There are options for replacing these drivers, including what Realbeast woofed.

If you have a spare external disk, you can use the excellent Restore to Dissimilar Hardware feature of EASEUS ToDo backup. Back up your working drive to an external drive, have only the SSD attached to the motherboard, set the controller mode to AHCI (you really, really have to do this), and do the restore with the dissimilar hardware option. EASEUS will take care of the driver issues for you. The first thing that you should do is an update of Windows and any third-party drivers.

That said, common practice is a re-install to SSD. Should you choose not to, browse through some of the articles on SSD OS tweaks and apply the ones that you find relevant. An oldie but goodie article is here: http://www.computing.net/howtos/show/solid-state-drive-... . Some of the points are debatable; I have a pagefile on the SSD and I enable Search Indexing.

Good luck to you!
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March 23, 2012 10:33:02 PM

Hey guys.

So first of all, thanks for all your ideas. Ultimately, I just ended up creating a removable boot device via a 4GB USB drive. For anyone who reads this thread with the same problem, my experience has singled this out as the easiest option. You can download the tool here <http://images2.store.microsoft.com/prod/clustera/framew...;

Once you've downloaded this tool, you have to format the drive to NTFS, so back up whatever you have on there. You can always put it back. Then run the tool, select your newly formatted USB drive, and let it install the boot files. At this point you can perform a clean install on your SSD. You will need your product key (in case you're trying to bootleg it. This is not your route).

Finally, disconnect all drives but the SSD for simplicity. Run the install. For me it went off without a hitch. When you reconnect your old HDD/SDD/Whatever, if you get an error about missing boot files or something then your boot priority is wrong. Restart, go into the BIOS, and make sure that the SSD drive is set as the first priority drive (probably aftere USB and CD-ROM).

I found this easier then downloading the ISOs and burning them to DVDs, mostly because the ISOs are pretty big and take a long time/a lot of bandwith to dowload. Also, I didn't have any DVD RWs on hand.

Hope that helps anyone reading this in the future, and good luck!
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April 4, 2012 10:44:47 PM

Best answer selected by Canadian_Marine.
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July 16, 2012 9:09:19 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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