Question Configuring Samsung M.2 NVMe with existing 850 EVO

Mar 17, 2019
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Hello,
I just upgrade my pc to an MSI 970pro mb, Ryzen 5 2600 and added an M.2 NVMe 500gb. Windows 10 is currently installed on my existing 850 EVO 500gb drive. My goal is to migrate windows 10 to the M.2 and convert the 850 to storage/app expansion. I've found posts videos for using Samsung's data migration tool, but my questions are mostly what comes after that.

1. I'd like to do a fresh windows install on the M.2 using a pen drive, but with 3 hours average time to reinstall each game X 8 games that is 24 hours of continuous downloading. What is the current thought on Cloning versus fresh install? Is using the migration tool ok?

2. Both the new M.2 and the 850 EVO are 500gb. The 850 is currently full. If I clone the 850 over to the M.2, it will be full. My thinking is to keep my two favorite games on the M.2 and install the rest on the 850 EVO. Is this correct thinking?

3. If yes, would I clone the drive over and then uninstall the games (from the M.2) that I want to have on the 850 EVO, wipe the 850 EVO and then install the games to the 850 EVO?

4. Is there a guide video that will hold my hand step by step through this process? (paste links please) : )

5. If the above is not the best way to do this, what should I do?

Thanks, -G
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Migration from old drive to new drive is generally no problem.
The Samsung Data Migration tool would almost certainly work well for this.

But for 500GB -> 500GB, the source drive must be below 400GB actual consumed space.
Everything from the old drive goes to the new drive.

After the migration operation, your best way forward is to wipe the old drive completely. All partitions, leaving it one blank space.
Then you can install whichever games you desire on the old 850 EVO.
With Steam games, you can move them over reasonably easily.

To move an already installed game
Games library
Right click the game
Properties
Local Files
Move Install Folder



For the actual migration operation:
-----------------------------
Specific steps for a successful clone operation:
-----------------------------
Verify the actual used space on the current drive is significantly below the size of the new SSD
Download and install Macrium Reflect (or Samsung Data Migration, if a Samsung SSD)
Power off
Disconnect ALL drives except the current C and the new SSD
Power up
Run the Macrium Reflect (or Samsung Data Migration)
Select ALL the partitions on the existing C drive
Click the 'Clone' button
Wait until it is done
When it finishes, power off
Disconnect ALL drives except for the new SSD
This is to allow the system to try to boot from ONLY the SSD
Swap the SATA cables around so that the new drive is connected to the same SATA port as the old drive
Power up, and verify the BIOS boot order
If good, continue the power up

It should boot from the new drive, just like the old drive.
Maybe reboot a time or two, just to make sure.

If it works, and it should, all is good.

Later, reconnect the old drive and wipe all partitions on it.
This will probably require the commandline diskpart function, and the clean command.

Ask questions if anything is unclear.
-----------------------------


Also, read this for going from a SATA drive (your 850 EVO) to a new NVMe drive:
https://forum.macrium.com/Topic21731-1.aspx
 
Mar 17, 2019
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Thank you very much!
Quick, clear, step-by-step
I now have my next 3 hours of life planned.
I'm sure I'll be back, tho :/
-G
 
I am a big fan of the Samsung ssd migration tool.
I have used it many times with good success.
Here is a link to the app and the instruction manual.



1. I see no problem using the ssd migration aid. The result will be exactly what your windows now looks like.
The aid is a windows C drive mover, not a clone which is a bit for bit copy.

2. Running the migration tool, it will calculate how much space you will need.
If, for some reason you do not have sufficient room, you will have two options.
You could delete or clean up the source drive.
Or, you can exclude some large folders from the move. The process leaves the source drive untouched.
Later, you can access any data folders left behind.
Reinstalling games is a pain and I would do so only if necessary. Perhaps, your new m.2 could be a 1tb drive and eliminate the issue??

3. It will make very little difference if your games are on the sata or the nvme drive from a performance point of view. If all your current games fit , then I would simply install new ones on the old 850 EVO.

4. Google is your friend, but the process is trivially simple.
The big caveat is to be certain that you do not mix up the source and target drives.

5. I found it useful to first download the Samsung nvme driver when installing the new pcie m.2 drive.
I needed to do this first when I converted from a 2.5" to a m.2 pcie drive.
 
Mar 17, 2019
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Geofelt,
Thank you very much for your thorough reply!
I needed to install the M.2 when I did the pc build/upgrade, so it is already installed on the MB. The M.2 is 500gb like the 850 EVO, because I got a great deal on it during the holidays. Originally, I was not planning on getting the M.2 at this point. I have Samsung's migration tool installed. I think I am going to uninstall the three games I play the least and do some other house cleaning to free up some space and get the 850 EVO down to 400gb for the migration. Then everything I install after this will be to the 850 EVO. I need to read up on how to move my Windows Music and Documents folders to the EVO drive, as they are not performance needy yet take up a lot of space.
Thanks again,
-G
 
Mar 17, 2019
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Hello Geofelt,
I am now regretting not taking your advice about moving files. I did not want to move My Documents, Music, Pictures for performance purposes, but instead to free up space on my 500gb nvme m.2 C: My thought was those files don't require performance, but my OS and games do.
So . . . I used this info: https://www.dummies.com/computers/operating-systems/windows-10/how-to-change-the-location-of-user-folders-in-windows-10/ to move my Documents folder to E:
(No Dummies Jokes, please :/ )
Which it did, but it looks like it turned my entire E: into My Documents folder. My Documents no longer exists on C:, and all of the contents of what was in C: Documents is now on E:, loose, as in not in a folder called "Documents." When I try to create a folder in E: named Documents, I get the window, "This folder already exists. Do you want to replace it?"
I think I made a mistake, and moving Windows User Folders can't actually be done. (Though that site above seems to say it can be done)
Should I do a windows repair to recreate the C: Documents folder and just drag everything from E: back into C: Documents?
Thanks for any help
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Hello Geofelt,
I am now regretting not taking your advice about moving files. I did not want to move My Documents, Music, Pictures for performance purposes, but instead to free up space on my 500gb nvme m.2 C: My thought was those files don't require performance, but my OS and games do.
So . . . I used this info: https://www.dummies.com/computers/operating-systems/windows-10/how-to-change-the-location-of-user-folders-in-windows-10/ to move my Documents folder to E:
(No Dummies Jokes, please :/ )
Which it did, but it looks like it turned my entire E: into My Documents folder. My Documents no longer exists on C:, and all of the contents of what was in C: Documents is now on E:, loose, as in not in a folder called "Documents." When I try to create a folder in E: named Documents, I get the window, "This folder already exists. Do you want to replace it?"
I think I made a mistake, and moving Windows User Folders can't actually be done. (Though that site above seems to say it can be done)
Should I do a windows repair to recreate the C: Documents folder and just drag everything from E: back into C: Documents?
Thanks for any help
As you've seen, you cannot move the entire /Users/ folder.

There are methods to move the Libraries...Documents, Photos, etc.
But not the whole folder.
And the method is OS dependent.

To undo what you've done, possibly this:
 
Mar 17, 2019
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This is what I did:
1. Open File Explorer.

2. Click Quick Access if it isn’t open.

3. Click the user folder that you want to change to select it.

4. Click the Home tab on the Ribbon.

5. The Home tab is displayed.

6. In the Open section, click Properties.

7. In the Folder Properties window, click the Location tab.

8. Click Move.

9. Browse to the new location you want to use for this folder.

10. Click Select Folder.

11. Click OK.

12. You’re asked to confirm that you want to move all files from the old location to the new location.

13. Click Yes and wait for the files to be moved to the new location.

Results are:
1. There is no longer a User Documents folder on C: (That I can see)

2. All the files that were in the C: Documents folder are now on E: (but not contained in a folder named Documents)

3. When I try to create a folder named Documents in E: I get the message that that folder already exists even though I can't see it, leading me to believe that the computer sees E: as the Documents folder. (But that is just a guess).
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Results are:
1. There is no longer a User Documents folder on C: (That I can see)

2. All the files that were in the C: Documents folder are now on E: (but not contained in a folder named Documents)

3. When I try to create a folder named Documents in E: I get the message that that folder already exists even though I can't see it, leading me to believe that the computer sees E: as the Documents folder. (But that is just a guess).
So did you select the root of the E drive, or a subfolder of the E drive?


For future reference:
Win 7 & 8:

Win 8.1 & 10:
 
Mar 17, 2019
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@karenjoly,
I successfully migrated my C: from 850 to my new M.2 970 using Samsung's migration tool. After I was sure that the 970 was working properly as my new C:/boot drive, I formatted the 850. After format, I read up (see Dummies link above) on how to "Move" Windows User folders (Documents, Music, Pictures) to another drive with the goal of only having Windows 10 OS and a few of my top games on C: (970). I followed the steps I pasted above and have the results listed above. I now know that I should not try to move the Windows user folders but redirect what would go into them instead. If you go to the Dummies link above, you will see how it says "move the folder to another drive." Other sites also discuss this, so I thought it was ok to do.

I would like advice on what to do next. I think repairing Windows (now referred to as "upgrading" on Windows Support) to get the User Document folder back on C:. From there I should be able to drag all the contents (what was originally in C: Documents folder) back into C: Documents folder. I just need to know if this is the right course to correct what I did.

I have not lost any data. It is all there on the 850 drive which is now just my extra storage drive.
 
Mar 17, 2019
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USAFRet, "So did you select the root of the E drive, or a subfolder of the E drive? "

I did exactly what I pasted above, nothing more.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
The E: drive (850) was just an empty, formatted drive, no folders at the time I did the above.
Right.
With WIn 8.1 and 10, that redirection must be done to a folder, not the root of the E drive.
Previous, the redirection would have resulted in the creation of the Documents folder on the second drive. That changed with Win 8.1.
Hence, the two different tutorials linked above.

Selecting "E" results in that whole drive being the "Documents" folder, and the heartache we now see.
Selecting E:/MyDocs results in a fully functional location for your files.


Whatever path you go down to fix this, I strongly urge you to have those doc files off on another drive, at least temporarily. Along with anything else you really wish to keep.
Moving stuff around like this, I would absolutely not trust that data to be in a single location, especially when that location is part of the moving around and current non-functional state.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Personally, I would start over completely, rather than trying to unscrew this stuff in place.

Have any critical data on another drive and offline.
Full wipe and reinstall of the OS, etc on the new NVMe drive, and full wipe of the 850 EVO.

Start from a good stable base.
 
Mar 17, 2019
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Thank you USAFRet,
Fortunately, everything that was in my Documents (the files in question) add up to 51gb. I have a brand new 64 gb usb flash drive. I will copy everything over to the usb before I go for the fix.

If I go to Windows Support, it tells me to:
  • Go to this link: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10
  • Click on "download tool now" button
  • Run the downloaded application
  • Accept the terms and conditions
  • Select "Upgrade this pc now"
  • Click on next
  • Let the tool download the files it needs and follow the instructions set by the application
Wouldn't this be the same as a repair windows? and wouldn't this make C:users Documents return?
 
Mar 17, 2019
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Ok, before I did a repair to Windows which would preserve data but not apps (hours of downloading and reinstalling games), I decided to just try and pull all the contents that were in my C:/user/Documents but now dumped into E: (not in a folder) into a new folder called Documents as a result of my failed move attempt (or was it?). I know this is pretty basic, but here is the result.

Now when I open Microsoft Word and create a new document and then click save, it defaults to E:\
Since the only folder (at the moment) on E: is Documents, I just click it and select save, and it is now the new document is in Documents on the E: which was my goal all along. It appears as though Windows sees E: as the default path for any documents that are saved in the same way that the default path used to be C:\user\Documents. If this is correct, I will always have one additional click from E:\ to E:\Documents.

One question I have is, If this is true then when I am installing a new game that by default creates a folder for its files in Documents, will it be the same result as saving a new Word files does now, I.E. default to E:\ with an extra click to get it to point to E:\Documents. Or will it not see C:\user\Documents and prompt me to select a destination?

  1. Does this reasoning seem correct?
  2. Do any of you see potential problems with this setup down the road under different scenarios?
  3. Also is there a way I can manually create a new default path now to E:\Documents? Or should I just live with the extra click needed?
Attached is an image of my File Explorer so you can see what I see
.

I greatly appreciate all the advice/responses you all have provided me!
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
With Word, and most other current applications, it remembers the last place you saved.
Currently, it is using the root of E, because that's where it thinks your actual Documents lib is.

Select somewhere else, and it will try to save to there, unless you tell it elsewhere.
So instead of clicking "Save", instead select Save As, and navigate to E:/WhateverYouWant.
The next time you use Word, it should remember that location.

Personally, I'd actually fix it, rather than working around a messed up config.
 
Mar 17, 2019
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Hello USAFRet,
I just experimented with your thought that Word and other apps attempt to save to the last place you saved, in this case a Word doc.
So I created a doc and saved it to desktop. Then I completely closed down Word, restarted it and then created another doc and selected Save As. It went right E: as default. I went through this procedure several times saving a new doc each time to a different location on my pc and then closing down Word, opening, creating a new doc and Saving As. Every time it defaulted to E:
This makes me more convinced that Windows has a default path built in for primary User Folders (Documents, Pictures, Music, Download).
 
Mar 17, 2019
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One other thing I'm curious about. If we shouldn't attempt to move C:\user folders around, why can you right click on Documents folder in File Explorer and select "Move." I would think if this was a no-no, it would be grayed out.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Word 2019.
  1. Create a file
  2. Click Save, and save it to a random folder, that had never been used. Here, G:/Testing
  3. Create another new file
  4. Click Save, and that random folder pops up at the top.
 
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