Question Copying M.2 Nvme SSD over USB

Nov 18, 2019
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So I have an Asus Rog Strix GL702VS - AH73 laptop with a 126GB SSD and a 1TB HDD. I'm using the SSD for boot (windows 10) and programs, and the HDD for files.

I recently bought a Samsung 970 Pro 512GB M.2 SSD. I'd like to replace my current one with this one. Only problem, my specific model of laptop only has one M.2 slot according to Asus.

So I bought one of those housing cases for my SSD so that it can be plugged in via USB. I know that Samsung has their own cloning software, however I've been told that it doesn't work when you plug in the SSD via USB. (I can either do 3.1 or C if that makes any difference) So I've been looking for a different program to use. Only problem is that I've never done this before, and am unaware of which programs are legitimate and which are stuffed with malware.

My questions are these:
  1. Which cloning program(s) would you recommend that have an easy to use interface?
  2. What other tips could you give me to make this process as smooth as possible? My plan is to clone the SSD, install, and then reboot. So I'm assuming that I won't have to mess with any of the boot options in the Bios.
Thank you all for your help!

~Stardust.
 
128GB wouldn't hold that many games/programs/etc. Is it overly inconvenient to just copy the savegames, etc onto the HDD, then just insert the new SSD and install Windows and your programs on it?
All you need is an 8GB flash drive to put the (free) Windows 10 ISO onto. You shouldn't even need to re-enter your Windows key (if Asus even told you what the key is)
 
Nov 18, 2019
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128GB wouldn't hold that many games/programs/etc. Is it overly inconvenient to just copy the savegames, etc onto the HDD, then just insert the new SSD and install Windows and your programs on it?
All you need is an 8GB flash drive to put the (free) Windows 10 ISO onto. You shouldn't even need to re-enter your Windows key (if Asus even told you what the key is)
It's not any games, but rather all of my animation software and adobe suite that's on here. I could re-install those programs, but that would take a while.

If I did end up going that route, I'd have to edit my bios to boot from the usb, then when I would turn on the computer it would go through re-installing windows onto the new SSD correct?
 
Nov 18, 2019
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You're replacing the 128GB M.2 with the 512GB M.2?
And the system only has the one M.2 port?

Is there 150GB free space on the HDD?
If so, we can do this...details to follow.
Yes, there is 192 GB free on the HDD. My next project after this is to get an external HDD for all of my personal files and games, to keep my laptop clear for work...but that's another project!
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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OK then.
Macrium Reflect and an Image (rather than clone or migrate).
(Yes, that application is mal-and junkware free)

  1. Download and install Macrium Reflect
  2. Run that, and create a Rescue CD or USB (you'll use this later). "Other Tasks"
  3. In the Macrium client, create an Image to some other drive. External USB HDD, maybe. Select all partitions. This results in a file of xxxx.mrimage
  4. When done, power OFF.
  5. Swap the 2 drives
  6. Boot up from the Rescue USB you created earlier.
  7. Recover, and tell it where the Image is that you created in step 3, and which drive to apply it to...the new m.2
  8. Go, and wait until it finishes.
  9. That's all...this should work.
 
Nov 18, 2019
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OK then.
Macrium Reflect and an Image (rather than clone or migrate).
(Yes, that application is mal-and junkware free)

  1. Download and install Macrium Reflect
  2. Run that, and create a Rescue CD or USB (you'll use this later). "Other Tasks"
  3. In the Macrium client, create an Image to some other drive. External USB HDD, maybe. Select all partitions. This results in a file of xxxx.mrimage
  4. When done, power OFF.
  5. Swap the 2 drives
  6. Boot up from the Rescue USB you created earlier.
  7. Recover, and tell it where the Image is that you created in step 3, and which drive to apply it to...the new m.2
  8. Go, and wait until it finishes.
  9. That's all...this should work.
So the Image can be saved to either an external HDD or the one currently installed correct? If I use an external, will I need to wipe it or no? I currently have one that has room on it...but it's also one of my backups for my thesis.
 

USAFRet

Titan
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Mar 16, 2013
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So the Image can be saved to either an external HDD or the one currently installed correct? If I use an external, will I need to wipe it or no? I currently have one that has room on it...but it's also one of my backups for my thesis.
It can go on any drive with sufficient free space.
Unlike a clone, it does NOT need to be wiped first.
The Image simply results in a single file, representing the totality of your current drive.
 
Nov 18, 2019
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It can go on any drive with sufficient free space.
Unlike a clone, it does NOT need to be wiped first.
The Image simply results in a single file, representing the totality of your current drive.
Okay, I'll just stick to the internal HDD then.

However, I've run into a problem. I click on other tasks, and then create rescue media. I select my usb drive and then hit "build", but now it is saying it has failed to generate WinPE WIM: Insufficient disk space to create the WIM. I'm currently trying to use a 16 GB usb. Do I need a larger one or is there a different issue?
 

USAFRet

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Okay, I'll just stick to the internal HDD then.

However, I've run into a problem. I click on other tasks, and then create rescue media. I select my usb drive and then hit "build", but now it is saying it has failed to generate WinPE WIM: Insufficient disk space to create the WIM. I'm currently trying to use a 16 GB usb. Do I need a larger one or is there a different issue?
What else is on that flash drive?
 
Nov 18, 2019
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What else is on that flash drive?
Nothing. I just re-formatted it and tried it again and same thing. The actual available space is 14.9 GB.

I'm currently backing up one of my 64GB drives and will format that and see if it will work.

Edit: I think the issue was that my current C: drive was too full. I uninstalled a few programs that I don't use anymore and now it's building the WIM.
 
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Nov 18, 2019
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Update:

I installed the new drive and applied the image to it.

However now windows can't boot up and it keeps going into automatic repair...

Update 2: apparently my problem is that the old ssd was sata and the new one is nvme. Will have to buy full version of the program, and create a new rescue disk. Or find some other solution online.
 
Last edited:

USAFRet

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Update:

I installed the new drive and applied the image to it.

However now windows can't boot up and it keeps going into automatic repair...

Update 2: apparently my problem is that the old ssd was sata and the new one is nvme. Will have to buy full version of the program, and create a new rescue disk. Or find some other solution online.
Ah.
Somehow I thought your original drive was NVMe as well.
Yes, goiung from SATA to NVMe can be problematic. I do not know of a generic fix.
 
Nov 18, 2019
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Ah.
Somehow I thought your original drive was NVMe as well.
Yes, goiung from SATA to NVMe can be problematic. I do not know of a generic fix.
That's okay! I wasn't aware that it was an issue until now, lol. I guess I'll just bite the bullet and do a clean re-install and then re-install my programs. It's annoying, but at least it is a solution.

If it wasn't for the nvme problem though, that program would have worked perfectly, so I'll definitely keep it in mind for the future. Thank you again for your help! Even though I wasn't able to use your method I still learned a lot.
 

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