[Bootable] Clone OS Drive in Windows 11, 10, 8, 7

How to clone an OS drive to another SSD or HDD in Windows 11, 10, 8, 7? In this post, a powerful third-party disk cloner will be introduced to help with the OS disk clone.


By Bryce / Updated on June 12, 2024

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How to migrate my operating system to another drive?

“Hello, I’m going to replace my hard disk drive with a newly bought 1TB SSD. The old hard disk contains Windows 10 operating system. I don’t want to reinstall Windows 10 on the SSD as it’s a little bit complicated for me. Is there anyone who can tell me how to migrate my OS to SSD without boot issue?”

Why clone OS drive to another drive?

Disk clone, including both data and OS disk clone, is a way to make an identical copy with one hard drive with another hard drive. This time, we’ll focus on OS disk clone. Different people clone the OS drive for different purposes. For example, if they bought an SSD, they’re likely to replace the old boot disk with the new SSD to enjoy better performance;  over time, the storage space of the boot disk becomes insufficient and thus, people need to transfer the whole drive to another drive for more storage space; or sometimes, they just want to make a backup of their OS in case of any system corruption.

Best disk cloner to clone the OS drive

To migrate the operating system to another drive without reinstallation, you can clone the operating system hard drive via disk cloning freeware, AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional. It can work under Windows 11, 10, 8, 7. Apart from cloning the entire system disk to SSD/HDD, it can clone only OS-related partitions (data partition not included).  Now, download the cloning software and choose one way to migrate Windows 11, 10, 8, or 7 to a new drive based on your need.

Free Download Win 11/10/8.1/8/7
Secure Download

Preparation work:
 If the target disk is new, please initialize it first; if it contains any files, remember to make a backup as during the hard drive clone, all files will be overwritten
Defragging HDD is advised before you transfer OS from HDD to SSD (omissible).
Connect the new hard drive to your PC. For laptop users, a USB-SATA connection cable might be necessary.
Ensure the capacity of the destination disk is not smaller than the used space of the current OS hard drive or the OS partition.

✎ Clone entire OS hard drive to another drive

If you want to send an exact copy of the entire old OS drive to the new drive, you can choose to clone the whole OS drive. Here, we take OS drive to SSD clone for example.

Step 1. Install and launch AOMEI Partition Assistant, click "Clone" in the main interface and select "Clone Disk".

Disk Copy

Step 2. Choose the hard disk that you need to clone as the source disk and click "Next".

Copy Disk in Windows 10 Quickly

Step 3. Select the destination disk to store the data on the source disk, and then click "Next".

Seleect Destination Disk

Step 4. Then, you can check the source and destination disk in the next window or change to “Sector to Sector clone”, and click the "Confirm" button to continue if there is no problem.

Edit Disk

Here, you can also click the "Settings" button to adjust the partition size on the destination disk or tick "4k alignment" to improve the reading and writing speed of SSD if the target disk is an SSD drive.


Step 5. At last, click "Apply" and "Proceed" in the main interface to start cloning the hard drive.


✎ Copy only OS related partitions

If your destination disk is not large enough to contain all data of the old hard drive, it’s a nice choice to clone Windows OS related partitions only to another drive. 

Step 1. Click on "Migrate OS" on the "Clone" tab and click "Next".

Migrate OS to SSD

Step 2. Select an unallocated space on the SSD as the destination location and click "Next".

Select Space on SSD

PS.: If there is no unallocated space on the destination disk, it will ask you to delete all partitions on the disk. If you don’t want to delete all partitions on the selected disk, you can create an unallocated space in advance.

Step 3. Here you can resize the OS partition and change drive letter. Then, click on Next.

Resize Partition

A Note on how to boot from the cloned SSD will pop up. Keep it in mind and click Finish.


Step 4. Here you can review the result of copying Windows 10 OS drive. After confirmation, click Apply and Proceed to commit operation.


If you clone an MBR OS disk to a GPT disk or clone a GPT boot disk to an MBR disk, you should change Legacy to UEFI or UEFI to Legacy so you can boot into the system normally. UEFI is for GPT while Legacy is for MBR.


How to clone the OS drive to another drive in Windows 11, 10, 8, 7? It’s not complex once you find a right tool. In this post, AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard and Professional editions are provided to help you deal with it easily. In only a few clicks, you can clone all the old hard drives or only the system-related partitions to another hard drive without any data loss. More than OS drive clone, the AOMEI product also supports other features including app mover, SSD 4K alignment, and partition clone. If you’re a Server user and still want to try all the features, you can use the Server edition.

Bryce · Staff Editor
Bryce is an editor of AOMEI Technology, he covers backup & restore, hard disk & partitions management, cloud files transfer, website & database backup and so on for AOMEI. He enjoys helping people find solutions to their problems. He loves traveling, Sleeping, reserching and so on. He enjoys helping people find solutions to their problems. He loves traveling, Sleeping, reserching and so on. He would like to spend all time on reaserching computer problems. He is a very cute boy.