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Windows 7: Installing windows to a new SSD with data preservation

13 Feb 2014   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
Installing windows to a new SSD with data preservation

Evening all

I have just purchased a new 120GB SSD and would like to use this as my main booting OS drive. I also have another SSD and a HDD, current and hopefully future setups below:

Current setup:
1TB HDD cached with 60GB with intel smart response tech - This has everything on it

Setup I am aiming for:
Windows and regular use core programs (chrome, skype etc) on 60GB SSD
120GB SSD for most of my steam stuff
1TB HDD for data

Now ideally I would like to do this without formatting the HDD. I have removed caching succesfully and now have the three drives, both the SSDs formatted and blank. Can I install a new copy of windows onto the smaller SSD and then later remove the existing copy from my hard drive? If not what would be the best way of going about this

Best wishes

My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2014   #2

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

You`re gonna have to find something to put the data on from the 1 TB hard drive, then you can format it and put your data back on it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2014   #3

Windows 7 Pro-x64

There will be a lot of wasted space on the 1TB drive if you don't reformat it. However, you could do that later. Just before you shut down to make the disk changes, mark the active boot partition on the 1TB drive as Inactive. Shut down, unplug the PS, hold the power on switch down for 20 seconds. Then remove all disk cables except the one you'll use for the system disk (120GB). Hopefully, you use port 1 (0) of the fastest controller. Clear CMOS memory (see your manual) then repower and install Windows on the 120GB drive. (All other disks still disconnected.) After you have a stable and updated OS then add the old drives.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

13 Feb 2014   #4
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

Once you have a stable OS setup on your SSD, you can delete the OS on the HDD and merge the space into one of the partitions on the HDD - that may take some time given the size of the disk. For that you use Partition Wizard.

Free Partition Magic alternative, partition manager freeware, partition magic server, partition magic Windows 7 and free Partition Manager software for Windows 7/8/VISTA/XP/2000 and Windows Server 2003/2008/2000.

Delete Partition - Partition Wizard Help Video

How to extend partition easily with partition magic ? Partition Wizard video help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2014   #5
Microsoft MVP


Be sure to unplug all other disks during install to the target SSD.

If you're wise and organize your files into User folders then it's best to have them on their own data partition, so if you haven't already I'd shrink C on the HD to create a data partition and copy the User foldersx there.

Then after install to the SSD either move its User folders to those you have on the data drive: User Folders - Change Default Location

or rightclick the ones on the data drive to add to the related Library - Include a Folder and then set your Library - Set Save Folder

The only downside with moving User folders is you'll need to use another imaging app besides Win7 backup imaging since it will see the new User folder location as another System Partition forcing it to be included in the image. If you must use Win7 imaging then use the Library method.

I would also use the larger SSD so all of your programs can benefit from the faster SSD speed, and you can use the modern paging and hibernate functions which are perfected in Win7.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Installing windows to a new SSD with data preservation

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