How to Clone Laptop Hard Drive to SSD Drive with Secure Boot

If you want to speed up your laptop, you can clone the laptop hard drive to SSD drive. Then AOMEI Partition Assistant software is a great tool to help clone desktop or laptop HDD to SSD with secure boot.


By Emily / Updated on May 12, 2023

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“How do I clone my laptop hard drive to SSD?”

“I want to copy or maybe clone all the things on my Dell laptop HDD that contains OS as well into my new SSD drive. Then when I replace it on my laptop, everything would be normal as usual with secure boot, just like the way that previous HDD. So anyone knows how to clone laptop hard drive to SSD in Windows PC? Thanks!”

Clone Laptop Hard Drive to SSD

As for the older laptops equipped with traditional mechanical hard drives, upgrading the HDD to an SSD drive is the most effective way to speed up computer since SSD has better data writing and reading performance. So, you might want to clone the laptop hard disk drive to SSD for this disk upgrade.

Compared with cleaning install OS and everything else on the SSD, the disk cloning method can help save much time and effort since it is able to  directly move Windows installation and other customized apps from the current hard drive to the destination SSD, and make the SSD bootable as well. 

Best tool for cloning laptop hard drive to SSD with secure boot

To clone a hard drive is different from copying personal files, music, and movies. etc. The "Ctrl C+ Ctrl V" does not work for system files, directory files, and some applications. In that way, you might be unable to run systems or access applications then. Consequently, you will have to reinstall everything once again.

So, you need to use a professional hard drive cloning tool. There are numerous different disk cloning software on the market, but I highly recommend AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional. This software has the “Disk Clone” function, allowing you to transfer all data, including Windows and programs, from one disk to another with secure boot. Besides, it provides two different disk clone methods for you to choose from:

❥ Clone Disk Quickly: this method will clone only used space from one hard drive to another, so you can clone laptop hard drive to a smaller SSD as long as the destination disk is larger than the used space of the source disk.
❥ Sector-by-Sector Clone: this way will clone both used and unused sectors from disk to disk, so the destination hard drive must be larger than the source disk.

Tutorial: clone laptop hard drive to SSD drive without reinstalling Windows

Here comes the complete tutorial, which will tell what you need to prepare for the clone, then how to clone HDD to SSD in the laptop, and finally how to boot from cloned SSD drive. The same steps are applicable for cloning dell, HP, Asus, Acer, and other brands laptop hard drive to a solid-state drive.

Step 1. Make preparation for cloning

Prior to the laptop hard drive cloning process, below preliminary work are necessary:

Remove unnecessary files or programs from the current hard disk to make it small enough to fit your SSD drive.

Connect SSD to your laptop and make sure it is recognized successfully. You may need an external USB to SATA adapter, dock or enclosure.

Connect Disk


Please back up files you need to keep on SSD drive because all the data will be erased during the cloning process.

If you are planning to clone MBR system HDD to GPT SSD drive, verify your motherboard supports UEFI boot mode. That’s because you must upgrade BIOS legacy to UEFI boot mode cloning, otherwise, you cannot boot from the destination disk.

Step 2. Start cloning laptop hard drive to SSD

Now, you can download AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional demo version and follow the steps to clone your laptop hard drive to a smaller SSD drive.

Download Pro Demo Win  11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

1. Install and run AOMEI Partition Assistant Pro. Click “Clone Disk” in the right menu.

Clone Disk

2. Choose a method to copy the selected disk, and click "Next". Here we select "Clone Disk Quickly".

Copy Method

3. Choose the source laptop hard drive you need to clone and click "Next".

Source Disk

4. Select the destination disk and tick option "Optimize the performance of SSD", and click "Next".

Target Disk

5. Here, you can adjust partition size as you need and hit on "Next". Because we are cloning the laptop hard drive to a smaller SSD, so the first option "Clone without resizing partitions" is greyed out.

Edit Disk

Clone without resizing partitions: all partitions will be cloned to the target disk as the original partition size. It is available when the target disk is larger than the source disk. If it is smaller, this option will be disabled as the screenshots displays.
Fit partitions to entire disk: all partitions will be cloned to the target disk and take up its full capacity according to the original partition size proportion.
Edit partitions on this disk: you can change every partition size on the target disk as you need.

6. Carefully read the note about how to boot from the destination disk if necessary and then click "Finish".

Boot Note

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


Step 3. Boot from cloned SSD securely

When the cloning process is done, you need to boot from the destination disk. For this task, do as below:

1. Turn off your laptop; disconnect SSD drive, power cable, and other connected cables.

2. Open the laptop back cover. Uninstall the old hard drive from the laptop drive slot and install the cloned SSD drive with a screwdriver.

Install Ssd

3. Screw the back panel covering the drive back on.

4. Reboot your laptop, long-press ESC, F1, F2, F8, or F10 during the initial startup screen to enter BIOS environment.

5. Get to the Boot tab and check the boot list. Use the arrow keys to move cloned SSD at the top of the boot priority list.

Change Boot Order

6. Save and exit the BIOS setup utility. And your laptop will boot from cloned solid-state drive successfully.

if the cloned SSD won’t boot, you can check whether the boot mode (BIOS and UEFI) is compatible with the SSD drive partition style (MBR or GPT), system files are complete, or SSD driver is outdated.


So, with AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, you can easily clone laptop hard drive to SSD in Windows 10/8/7 with secure boot. It is not exclusively designed for cloning hard drives. Thus, you can also use this software for migrating only OS to SSD, extending NTFS system drive without rebooting PC, recovering lost partitions, converting MBR and GPT without deleting volumes, and more. If you need to clone Windows Server disk, please try AOMEI Partition Assistant Server.

Emily · Staff Editor
Emily is an English editor of AOMEI Technology; she has a great passion for providing easy solutions for people to tackle with all disk or partition management problems. In addition to writing articles about disk/partition management, she also edits great tutorials on how to back up and restore disk for data security. In her spare time, she loves to learn computer skill to improve herself or stay with her family to enjoy a good day.