Windows 7 Forums
Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.

Windows 7: Advice on cloning OS partition to SSD with relocated user directory

05 Nov 2019   #1

Win 7 pro 64 bit
Advice on cloning OS partition to SSD with relocated user directory

I have been a long time user of Win 7 and I have to say, it is my favourite OS so far. I have yet to try 10 but that may change...someday.

Ok so I have a several question I want to ask. Since this is a dedicated windows 7 forum, I think I'm at the right place.

Recently I purchased an SSD. I am planning to migrate my OS on that SSD as well as to use to install all my games. My current hdd is 2 tb in size, separated into 3 partitions. 230 gb for the OS and programs (C:), 1 tb for my user directory (D:) as well as all the crap I've downloaded and another 500 gb for some files from my old vista PC (E:).

So my plan is to clone this hard drive to the SSD so I could experience a faster boot and gaming experience. However, I plan only to clone the Windows partition (C:).

The problem is, years ago, when I first installed Windows, I used the tutorial as outlined here:

User Profiles - Create and Move During Windows 7 Installation

and proceeded to move my user directory to the second partition, D:

Although my SSD is 2 tb in size, I plan only to move the windows partition and keep the user partition on the old drive (D:). The reason why is I will be using my SSD to install games, which has a cumulative size of 1 tb, which is located in another separate hard drive. The rest of the SSD space I will reserve for future use. At any rate, there won't be enough space to clone my D: partition to my SSD.

Now I have several questions:
- How do I perform this? I've done some browsing and macrium reflect is highly recommended but I am not sure it's free.
- If I have successfully cloned the windows partition, how will the drive letterings be configured?
- Will the cloned partition be bootable?
- If the cloned partition is bootable, will everything else function as they have always been? That is to say, since my user directory is still on (D: on the hdd) as well as the appdata folder and programdata folder, not to mention there is another partition containing windows in the same drive, will windows be confused?
- My windows is currently working fine, maybe slightly slower over the years since I've made several "cosmetic" alterations (icons, startup sound, startup screen, hold'em game), do I have to run sfc/scannow before cloning the partition?

Thank you for your time and expertise.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Nov 2019   #2

win 8 32 bit

Welcome to the forum. Can you post a screenshot of your drive from disk manager showing all the detail as there may be more partitions needed other than c. There may be other things to consider as changes need to be made to windows to run an ssd correctley. If you are going to keep the old drive in the disk signature will be the same and windows may think both drives are the same. You dont say what size or model of ssd you have got often they come with free software to clone for free which is better
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Nov 2019   #3

Win 7 pro 64 bit

Thanks. The SSD is a Sandisk Ultra 3D SSD 2 tb. Actually I just got it today and was really surprised by how light the packaging was. Took it out and couldn't believe that this expensive hardware looks and feels like a cheap plastic toy. I never seen or handled ssd before, it was my first.

Link to screenshot: Imgur: The magic of the Internet
My System SpecsSystem Spec

05 Nov 2019   #4

win 8 32 bit

You need the partition before c as thats what you actually boot from. The main problem will be it may not boot as its looking for drive d and you cant change it until you boot. I would think copy d as well so you can get it to boot then you can fiddle later.

You will need to make extra settings to 7 on the ssd Optimize Windows for SSDs - Thomas-Krenn-Wiki
You should have c drive as drive 0 its best practice. If you clone remove old drive and boot ssd as they both have same signature you need to know it will boot c not from other drive.

As at the moment you can still upgrade to 10 for free its well worth doing so you get the free licence or you may end up having to pay later you could clone get it working then remove ssd and update the old disk. Sooner or later people will have to ouse 10 as no new drivers will be made for 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Nov 2019   #5

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit

I read elsewhere if one moves the user directory out of default C location, repair install, certain WUs, etc., some 3rd party installs -- may either balk or become problematic, is that a possibility here? I'm asking w7 gurus :)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Nov 2019   #6

W7 home premium 32bit/W7HP 64bit/w10 tp insider ring


If you plan to upgrade to w10, shoot over to our sister forum.

Kari - the author of that tutorial is active over there.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Nov 2019   #7

Windows 7 HP 64

Please don't use external links to post an image.
Use the paper clip on the Quick Reply window (top right)
Browse to the image file - upload

I've been using Kari tutorial for years and did what you plan to do.

- Preparing
First of all, download Macrium Software | Macrium Reflect Free.
Select Home use, skip entering email, download and install.
Run disk cleanup or CClean to get rid of all trash.
With Macrium Reflect, create an image of the first partition (100M) and of C: and save them on E: (Backup)

- Activating the SSD
Detach disk 0 (O,P,Q and R) (SATA or power cable) and attach the SSD.
Boot into Windows and create a new user (it's important and temporary)
With Macrium Reflect, restore the two partitions image saved on E: into the SSD. Open Disk manager and make sure the first partition on the SSD (100M) is "active". If it's not, make it active.

Restart and boot from the SSD. When asked, make sure you select the temporary user created above.
It may say it didn't find the user profile and it will create (means it didn't find the D:\Users)
Open Disk Manager and and change Morgan Zero partition to D:
Reboot from the SSD and select your user name. It should log in normally.
If everything is working properly, you can go to next step: clean

- Clean
Boot from the SSD, and select your user.
Delete the temporary user created.
Open device manager and on the HDD delete the first partition (100M) and the old C: partition and create a new partition to be used as data storage.

Post a disk manger image of your SSD and HDD. Please expand the columns so we can read them. (specially Status)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
4 Weeks Ago   #8

Win 7 pro 64 bit

guys, i am still at step 1, so i just installed my ssd, and apparently i need to initialize it. i did and used mbr. so now it needs a new volume, otherwise i wont be able to see it.

should i go ahead and create a new volume? this will give it the letter j. if i cloned the partition on this j, woulndt the drive still be called j?

sry for the noobish question, but im really clueless with these stuffs
My System SpecsSystem Spec
4 Weeks Ago   #9

win 8 32 bit

If your cloning leave it blank remove all partitions the clone will set it up correctly
My System SpecsSystem Spec
3 Weeks Ago   #10

Win 7 pro 64 bit

I just wanna update, the method didn't work. Whenever I tried logging on, it says user profile not found. Windows is stuck at logon screen.

However, the solution was far simpler than I thought. I basically just cloned the user partition onto the ssd, change boot order, log on to windows, change drive letters, and deleted the old windows partition and the new user partition. I didn't even have to switch sata positions nor disconnect the old hdd. Just change the boot order.

Whenever windows is booted from a new drive, the system drive will default to C automatically. And it will look for a user directory where the profile to be logged on is saved. If the directory doesn't exist then you can't log on, though windows will boot just fine. Since I saved all my user profiles on D: I had to clone that as well onto the ssd, since the old drive D: on the old hdd will be assigned a different letter automatically when you boot from the new drive, so windows can't seem to find it.

Also cloning the small 100 mb fore-partition on the system drive is necessary for a successful boot.

Thanks everyone.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Advice on cloning OS partition to SSD with relocated user directory

Thread Tools

Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
Help: Relocated My Music over user folder
Hi Guys, So I was moving around some of my library folders (downloads/music/etc) to help free up space and better accommodate the way I want things located. When I went to move "My Music" I relocated it to C:\Users\username, and after frantically trying to relocate it for over an hour i've...
General Discussion
How to 'reconnect' relocated user library files
In preparing for install of SSD I used 'Properties>Location' to relocate user library folders from the system HDD to a different HDD. After I do a clean install of Win 7 Pro to the SSD, how do I reconnect the relocated folders?
General Discussion
advice on Cloning Win7 HDD partition to new SSD
I am plan to copy my existing Windows 7 HDD partition to a new SSD. Please offer your advice to help me think through this process. My apologies for using the technical terms incorrectly. My existing HDD partitions are C: Windows 7, D: Windows XP, E: data and the fourth partition is UBUNTU. My...
Backup and Restore
Imaging, cloning...need advice
Hi again, I'm confusing with this terminology (imaging, cloning,..). Anyway I need a big advice, please! I got my first BSOD in my 6 month Toshiba laptop (Tecra R840-16J) that I could not recover from (I'm sure the experts could but I don't :(). I tried safe mode, go to a previous good...
Backup and Restore
HD cloning advice please
Preparing to clean install Win 7 upgrade. Will be cloning my existing XP Pro installation ( C: ) to my empty D: drive. My question is if the clone goes successfully...will I be able to boot to either drive's XP Pro installation depending on the first boot drive set up in my bios ? Is a...
Installation & Setup

Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:58.
Twitter Facebook