Installing an SSD or Solid State Drive on your laptop can provide new life to your slow-speed laptop. Upgrading from HDD (Hard Disk Drive) to SSD is a great way to boost or speed up your computer. However, you can try defragmenting your laptop’s hard drive. It may provide some enhancement in the performance, but that performance change would not be as significant as installing an SSD.
If reinstalling the operating system on your laptop and the thought of losing your data worries you, then relax. Within one or two hours, your laptop will be ready with the clone of your old system, with exceptional high-speed performance.
Check Upgradability of Your Laptop
Before you begin, you first need to check the upgradability of your laptop.
The process of upgrading your laptop from HDD to SSD is straightforward. If you have access to your laptop’s hard drive via the removable back panel at the bottom, you can easily open up and replace the HDD with an SSD. If you own an Ultrabook laptop, you will be disappointed as Ultrabooks have a sealed back panel.
More importantly, before buying an SSD, you need to ensure that the SSD would fit the form factor of the laptop’s HDD. Most laptop computers generally come with 2.5-inch drive slots, but ultraportable notebooks come with a 1.8-inch drive size. The 2.5-inch SATA drives are used widely in most laptops. Also, the 2.5-inch drives and interfaces like SATA or IDE can vary in thickness – 7mm or 9.5 mm thickness.
The specification of the drive can be easily obtained by simply looking at the label of your current hard drive.
Things you need:
A small screwdriver with a good drive tip or bit is required for adequately dismantling the back panel. In addition, of course, you will need an SSD of the correct form factor and interface, having enough space for the Windows partition and any system recovery partitions. Plenty of SSDs from different brands is available in the market.
An external adapter is required to connect the SSD to your laptop during the system cloning process and turn the current drive after the SSD replaces it into an external HDD for backups and other storage purposes.
Preparations for the process of cloning the current drive:
Before starting with the process of upgrading the laptop, we need to perform the cloning of the current hard drive. This is done so that after the upgradation process is completed, you get back all of your files in your newly installed SSD that were previously present in the HDD. For the process of cloning, follow these steps:
1. Make a complete backup of your system:
You can create a backup of the current system image in Windows 10 by going to the Control panel. You can also use the shortcut key combination of the Windows button + X on the keyboard and then select the Control panel.
Then choose the “Save backup copies of your files with File History” option under the System and Security tab.
Browse the “System Image Backup” opportunity on the left menu to create a backup of the current system image on any external drive or network location.
2. Move the large folders that you do not need on the SSD:
Your SSD might have a lower storage capacity compared to the current HDD. In that case, move the large folders to an external drive or some other location so that there is adequate space in your hard drive for cloning to a smaller SSD.
3. Clean up your drive for additional storage space:
Perform clean-up for your drive by uninstalling programs you do not require anymore and deleting all the useless files that you don’t want to carry to your new SSD.
The cloning process
- Install the cloning software on your laptop computer.
- Follow the drive cloning application instructions to clone your existing data from the hard drive to the SSD. Connect the new SSD to the laptop using the SATA-to-USB adapter.
The installation process:
- Unplug the SSD from the laptop and also the SATA to the USB adapter.
- Unplug the laptop’s power adapter and remove the battery (if removable)
- Remove the existing hard drive after opening the back panel by using the screwdriver. Consult the laptop manual for any further instructions.
- Insert the new SSD containing the previously copied data into the laptop by unscrewing the mounting bracket, removing the previous hard drive, placing the SSD in the mounting bracket, and then screwing it.
- Replace the battery and screw the back panel
Now, the process of upgrading your laptop from HDD to SDD is completed, and you can enjoy blazing fast speed on your laptop.