By Bryce / Last Updated December 15, 2020

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?”

You can clone OS drive to another drive

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

Preparation work:
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 or is not smaller than the used space of the current OS hard drive or the OS partition.
Defragging HDD is advised before you transfer OS from HDD to SSD (omissible).

✎ Clone entire OS hard drive to another drive

If you want to keep all data on your new drive, you can choose to clone the whole OS disk to a new one. Here takes cloning OS hard drive to SSD in Windows 10 as an example.

Step 1. Install and run the disk copy tool. In the main interface, click “All Tools” and choose “Disk Clone Wizard”.

Step 2. Now, you need to choose a method to clone your OS hard drive. Here I choose "Clone Disk Quickly".

Copy Disk Quickly

▸Clone Disk Quickly – clone only used space, allowing you to clone OS disk to a smaller one as long as the destination disk’s capacity is not smaller than the used space on the source disk.
▸Sector-by-Sector Clone – clone all sectors, requiring that the capacity of the destination disk be larger than or equal to the capacity of the source disk.

Step 3. Select your source disk and destination disk.

Step 4. In this window, you can edit partition or leave it alone.

Step 5. Click “Apply” and “Proceed” to execute the operation.

Apply

✎ 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. Install and run AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional. Click on "Migrate OS to SSD" on the left corner 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. Remember it in mind and click Finish.

Note

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

Apply

Note: AOEMI Partition Assistant Standard edition allows you to clone OS from MBR disk to MBR disk; If you need to migrate OS from GPT to MBR/GPT or MBR to GPT, please upgrade to Professional version.

Summary

How easy it is to clone OS drive to another hard drive using AOMEI Partition Assistant! In fact, this all-around software can assistant you to solve many other problems related to disk/partition, like converting NTFS to FAT32 without formatting, merge non-contiguous unallocated space into C drive, etc.