Migrate an Operating System to a Solid State Drive

By Ronnie Kupfer

If you have a Windows computer that is a few years old with a mechanical hard-disk drive (HDD) and find it sluggish and slow, would like better performance, and don’t have the cash to shell out on a brand-new machine, a solid state drive (SSD) might be what you need to improve performance. Solid state drives improve performance significantly over traditional HDD’s because they can be read from and written to, much faster than HHD’s. SSD’s have come down significantly in price over the past couple years, making an upgrade to one arguably the most valuable upgrade you can make to a computer.

However, if you don’t feel comfortable transferring your existing operating system and all the contents of your current hard drive to a new drive, this article is for you. This article also applies to those who have a computer with an SSD but need to upgrade to a larger capacity SSD but feel uncomfortable transferring their system. This article gives an overview of the process. Details of physically removing and replacing drives varies from computer to computer, so the individual will need to research how that is done.

You will need three items to complete this task. A new SSD, a USB 3.0 to SATA adapter cable, and Paragon Migrate OS software.

Amazon.com has a great selection of SSD’s. I recommend the Samsung 860 Evo line of SSD’s. They’re fast and reliable and listed on Amazon.com at $78 for a 500GB drive and $148 for a 1TB drive.

The USB 3.0 to SATA adapter is the cable you’ll need to connect your new SSD to one of your computer’s USB 3.0 ports. These are available on Amazon.com for as low as $8.

Finally, the last item you’ll need is the Paragon Migrate OS software. This software will transfer all your files from your existing drive to your new SSD with only a few clicks required from the user. It is available for $30 at https://tinyurl.com/yxgug2hg. The Samsung SSDs come with a data migration tool that I and others I know have had no success with using, but the Paragon Migrate OS software has also worked successfully.

To begin, purchase, download and install the Paragon Migrate OS software at the link above. Connect the SSD to the USB 3.0 to SATA adapter and plug into your computer’s USB 3.0 port. Once detected, create a new hard drive partition for your new SSD using the disk management tool that comes with Windows. Run the Paragon Migrate OS software following the steps on where to transfer your existing hard drive data to.

Once you’ve followed the steps, the software migrates all the data for you. If you are transferring from an HDD to an SSD, the process may take several hours. However, if you are transferring from an SSD to an SSD over USB 3.0 the process be as fast as 30 to 45 minutes. Of course this depends on the amount of data being transferred. I have found that migrating system data that used 240GB of memory from a 250GB Samsung SSD to a 500GB Samsung SSD took 30 to 45 minutes.

When the migration has completed, power down your system and remove the old hard drive from the computer and replace it with the new SSD. The computer will reboot like nothing changed. However, if you had an HDD before, you’ll immediately notice your computer boots and runs much faster.

For as little as $116, if you previously had an HDD in your computer, you will have improved your computer with the most noticeable performance enhancing upgrade you could possibly make. Also, you now have a spare hard drive that you can use to store data externally with your new adapter cable.

Ronnie Kupfer is a member of the Information Technology Senior Capstone Project course and is continuing his education at SMCC. This article can be read online at https://tinyurl.com/yyd583le.

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