By Bryce / Last Updated July 17, 2019

Scenario

“Hello, my machine is running Windows Server 2016 and I have bought a great solid state drive. Now I want to replace the existing OS hard drive with the newly purchased SSD. But I’m afraid of complicated process of reinstalling operating system and other applications. Is there any advice?”

It is wise to clone Server 2016

As what mentioned in Scenario, it is bothering to reinstall Windows Server 2016 operating system and other applications one by one on the new hard drive. Windows Server 2016 has built-in tool, Windows Server Backup, allowing you to make a backup. And then you need to restore the backup image. It seems still a little bit troublesome.

To save time and energy, you can employ AOMEI Partition Assistant Server to clone Windows Server 2016 hard drive to SSD/HDD without reinstallation. That cloning software requires no complicated operation but few clicks to complete hard drive duplication and is featured with the follwing highlights:

  • With two copying methos: clone only used space and clone every sector even unused, it allows you to clone hard drive to smaller one or clone BitLocker hard drive effortlessly.

  • It supports different SSD, HDD, SSHD and SD card etc. And it allows you to clone MBR system disk to GPT disk and vice versa with secure boot.

  • During the cloning process, it enables you to perform 4k alignment for SSD, which can improve SSD’s performance.

To make better use of it, keep on reading the following tutorial about how to copy Windows Server 2016 disk.

Detailed steps to clone Server 2016 hard drive to SSD or HDD

Firstly, connect the destination SSD or HDD to your machine (the capacity of the target disk should not be smaller than the used space of source disk) and install AOMEI Partition Assistant Server. Then do as the steps given below:

Step 1. Run the software, right click the hard drive with Windows Server 2016 installed and choose "Disk Copy".

Select Windows Server 2016 hard drive

Step 2. Choose a proper way between “Copy Disk Quickly (recommended)”and “Sector by-Sector-Copy.

Clone Windows Server 2016 Hard Drive

Step 3. Select the prepared SSD as the destination disk, check the option “Optimize the performance of SSD” and click “Next” (If the target drive is HDD, don’t check the option “Optimize…”)

Select Destination Disk

Step 4. In this windows, you are able to edit partitions on the destination disk.

Edit Partition

PS.: When clone Windows Server to smaller disk, the first option will be greyed out.

Step 5. You’ll see a Note about how to boot from the cloned drive successfully after cloning. Read it careful and keep it in mind.

Note

Step 6. Here you can preview the operation. Click “Apply” and “Proceed” after confirmation.

Proceed

Clone only OS drive to another hard drive in Windows Server 2016

When your new SSD is not big enough to contain all data saved on the previous one, you can use AOMEI Partition Assistant to clone only Server 2016 OS related partitions not all partitions to target disk and use the original HDD as data storage device. Let’s how it works:

Step 1. Run AOMIE Partition Assistant Server and choose “Migrate OS to SSD”. In the pop-up window, click “Next”.

Migrate Windows Server 2016 to SSD

Step 2. Choose an unallocated space on SSD and click “Next” button.

Choose Unallocated Space

Step 3. Here you can adjust the system partition on the SSD. Then, click “Next” button.

Edit

Remember the Note about how to boot from the cloned disk and click “Next”.

Step 4. After confirming operation, click “Apply”>“Proceed” to execute it.

Proceed

Notes:

  • A reboot is required as the operations above are performed under PreOS mode.

  • After confirming that you can boot successfully from the cloned hard drive, you can wipe the original hard drive or delete C drive on it to free up disk space.

  • These steps can also be applied to clone hard drive or OS related partitions in Windows Server 2003, 2008, 2012 and 2019.

After copying Winodws Server 2016 hard drive to another one or copying only OS related partitions, you need to change boot order to boot from the cloned disk; or you can swtich old disk with the new one and boot from it directly. What's more, if you clone MBR disk to GPT disk or GPT to MBR, you need to change boot mode accorindly.

Conclusion

To clone Server 2016 hard drive to another one, “Disk Copy Wizard” of AOMEI Partition Assistant Server can help you to complete this task without obstacles. When the used space of the original disk is larger than the target one, you can delete unnecessary files and uninstall applications before cloning.

If the size of target disk is still smaller, you can use the feature “Migrate OS to SSD” to migrate OS drive in Windows Server 2016 to SSD/HDD and keep the hard drive for data storage. You can make your choice about migrating Server 2016 according to different situations.