By AOMEI / Last Updated July 26, 2019

Upgrade to SSD without reinstalling Windows

Replacing your old boot drive with a solid state drive (SSD) is the best upgrade that you can easily manage, which will dramatically improve your computer performance. You actually do not need to do a fresh installation of Windows 10/8/7. You can simply copy boot drive to SSD.

Copying boot hard drive will include system partition, boot partition, recovery partition, and every partition on that same disk, so you do not need to worry aboutcloned SSD won’t boot. What if the SSD is a small drive and all the data on the original hard disk drive (HDD) cannot fit on the SSD? Would that be an issue?

Copy hard drive to smaller SSD

If you use the right tool, there will not be a problem to copy Windows 10/8/7 to a smaller SSD drive. AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard is a free partition manager tool that allows you to clone boot drive to a smaller SSD. If the data is too large to fit on the SSD, you can use “Migrate OS to SSD” feature to only transfer system to SSD.

How to copy Windows boot drive to SSD?

You can connect the SSD to SATA port or SATA-to-USB adapter. As long as your computer detects the SSD, it does not matter how you connect it. Then you can follow the steps below to clone boot drive to new SSD.

1. Download and install AOMEI Partition Assistant. Open it.

2. Right click on the boot drive and select “Copy Disk”. You can also click “Disk Copy Wizard” from the left panel, which works the same.

Copy Disk

3. In a pop-up window, select the option “Copy Disk Quickly” and click “Next”. If your boot disk has partitions that Windows cannot recognize, such as Linux partition, and you also want it cloned, you can select “Sector by Sector Copy”, which will take more time.

Quickly Copy

4. Select the SSD as the destination disk and tick the checkbox at the bottom to optimize SSD.

Choose Destination

5. In the next window, you can change the partition size if need be. If you do not have a partiticular requirement, you can just check the option “Fit partitions to entire disk”.

Edit Size

6. Click “Finish” to return to the main interface. Then you can preview partition layout on the SSD. If no problem, click “Apply” to start to copy boot drive to SSD.


If you select the Copy Disk Quickly, the process will not take long. When it finishes, you change boot order in BIOS and then boot your computer from the cloned SSD. If your connect the SSD as an external drive, you need to replace the old drive with the cloned SSD and then boot the cloned drive.