Question How to clone Laptop SATA SSD to NVMe M.2 SSD without using an external enclosure

Jun 22, 2019
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I have a Dell Inspiron 13" 2-in-1 laptop model 7373 which is currently fitted with a 250Gb SanDisk X400 M.2 2280 SATA SSD.

I have purchased a new 500Gb Samsung 970 Evo Plus NVMe M.2 PCIe SSD and plan to replace the existing 250Gb SanDisk with this new Samsung SSD.

My question is how can I clone my existing SATA SSD to my new NVMe SSD without purchasing an external NVMe enclosure for the new SSD so I can connect it externally via USB 3.1 and do a straight clone?

I have been assured by Dell and Samsung that the new NVMe SSD will work fine in my Dell laptop but I don't know how to make a clone between the two SSD drives.

I do have a 1TB external 2.5" USB drive. Is it possible to clone my existing SanDisk SSD to the external USB drive. Replaced the existing SanDisk SSD in the laptop with the new Samsung SSD and then boot from the external USB drive. Then clone my external USB drive back onto the new Samsung SSD installed?

Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks.

Steve
 

USAFRet

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Not a clone, but rather an Image.

Assuming you have another drive with sufficient free space to hold the entirety of your current m.2 drive:

  1. Download and install Macrium Reflect
  2. Run that, and create a Rescue CD or USB (you'll use this later). "Other Tasks". You'll need a 4 or 8GB USB flash drive.
  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.
 
Jun 22, 2019
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Dear USAFRet,

Thank you so much for your reply, I now have a much better understanding on how to achieve this SSD upgrade.

I have never attempted anything like this before so I was wondering if you would mind expanding on the process to answer my questions below:


Not a clone, but rather an Image. Thank you, I now understand the difference (y)

Assuming you have another drive with sufficient free space to hold the entirety of your current m.2 drive: Yes, I have a 1TB external USB HDD (y)

  1. Download and install Macrium Reflect No problem (y)
  2. Run that, and create a Rescue CD or USB (you'll use this later). "Other Tasks". You'll need a 4 or 8GB USB flash drive. Just to confirm that you create a Rescue USB flash drive from within Macrium Reflect under the "Other Tasks" option not from within windows. Is that right?
  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 OK, I think that I can do that to my external USB HDD (y)
  4. When done, power OFF. OK (y)
  5. Swap the 2 drives OK (y)
  6. Boot up from the Rescue USB you created earlier. Do I need to go into the laptop BIOS and change the boot drive to the USB flash drive or will the laptop search the USB drive if it does not find an operating system on the internal new SSD?
  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 Once the laptop has booted from the USB flash drive I presume that I then need to plug in my external USB HDD so it can access the backup drive image or do I do this before rebooting from the USB flash drive? Is the "Recover" option from within windows or from within Macrium Reflect? If it is in Macrium Reflect, will I have access to this software from the Rescue USB flash drive I have created?
  8. Go, and wait until it finishes. Fingers firmly crossed:eek:
  9. That's all...this should work. Thank you (y)
Sorry if my follow-up questions seem obvious to you but as a novice in this area I just want to fully understand the process before I begin rather than get stuck half way through and end up guessing what to do next!

Thank you for your patience.

Regards,

Steve
 

USAFRet

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2. Correct. In the Macrium menu, under Other Tasks.

6. Maybe. It Upon finding no OS on the new drive, it should boot from the USB without you having to do anything.

7. Does this laptop have more than one USB port? The 'Recover' is within the Macrium application, not Windows.
 
Jun 22, 2019
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Hi USAFRet,

Wow! That was a quick response! What time is it where you are? I am in the UK and it has just gone midday.

Thanks for the answers.

Regarding Q&A 7. Yes, the laptop has 3 USB ports. How do I access the Macrium application after I have rebooted using the USB flash drive or does Macrium put their software onto the Rescue USB?

Sorry for all these questions!!

Regards,

Steve
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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07:24 here on the sunny east coast of the USA.

The Rescue USB you make has enough of the Macrium application to do exactly this. That is literally what it is made for.
Consider the situation where you are replacing a dead drive, not just upgrading.

Rescue...:)


Also, since you are moving from a SATA drive to an NVMe drive, you may have to do what is outlined here:

https://forum.macrium.com/Topic21731-1.aspx
https://knowledgebase.macrium.com/display/KNOW7/Re-deploying+Windows+to+new+hardware+using+Macrium+ReDeploy
 
Jun 22, 2019
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Thanks for all the info and links, I now feel confident enough to give it a go(y)

There may be a cry for help in a few hours:eek:

Wish me luck.

Regards,

Steve
 
Jun 22, 2019
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Hi there,

Here is the call for help that I mentioned in my last message!

It all went well until I tried to restore the drive image I had made on my external HDD back onto the newly installed Samsung SSD.

When I selected the image to restore Macrium showed one of the partitions as an 11GB Image partition highlighted in red? Not sure what this is?

I proceeded anyway and selected all of the partitions from the image to restore onto the target disk but it leave leaves about 250GB of unallocated space because the target disk is larger than the source disk. I was unable to change the partition size of the C drive because it was not the last partition before the unallocated space.

So I looked at some Macrium help pages and did as they suggested by first just selecting the C drive partition to be restored. This allowed me to increase the size of the C drive partition, I selected the maximum unallocated space as suggested by the Macrium help pages. But then when I added the other remaining partitions to be restored I got an error saying there was not enough space on the target disk. Even if I just increase the C drive partition by 25GB of the 250GB unallocated space available I still get the same error message i.e. there is not enough space on the target drive for the remaining partitions.

I am now stuck with no real idea how to proceed!

Any suggestions would be very helpful.

Thanks.

Steve
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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Assuming you made an Image, you should be looking for a single file. Not a partition.
Named something.mrimg

For instance, a full drive backup I made last night of my C drive is labeled "D406A2868695CC11-00-00.mrimg"


You should NOT need to mess with partition sizes on the new drive.
That new drive needs to be one single large partition.
 
Jun 22, 2019
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I have checked my existing SSD and it has 6 partition as follows:

  1. ESP FAT3 (LBA) Primary size 500MB used 63.8MB
  2. Unformatted Primary size 128.0MB used 128.0MB
  3. OS (C) NTFS Primary size 224.87GB used 172.22GB
  4. WINRETOOLS NTFS Primary size 471.0MB used 406.0MB
  5. Image NTFS Primary size 11.46GB used 11.30GB
  6. DELLSUPPORT NTFS Primary size 1.07GB used 730.0MB
The image file created consists of 40 files, the first file is named 1EF06C92D427DEFC-00-00.mrimg and then the last two digits of each file goes up by one digit. 39 of the files are 4GB each (something to do with a FAT32 file size restrictions?) and the last one is 115GB.

Does this help at all?

Thanks for your efforts to help me, it's really appreciated.

Regards,

Steve
 

USAFRet

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You've done something very weird in the creation of that Macrium Image.
Selecting all the partitions on your current drive, it should have resulted in a single large file.

This is an Image of my C drive from last night:
 
Jun 22, 2019
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OK thanks, I wont take up anymore of your time., you have been very helpful.

I think I will start again and create a new rescue USB and image file.

Regards,

Steve
 

popatim

Titan
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I suspect his external 1tb drive is formated Fat32 and cannot store anything greater then 4GB which is why Macrium split the image up into pieces.

If the stuff on the external is not important you can reformat it to NTFS or ExFat to resolve the file size issue.
 

USAFRet

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I suspect his external 1tb drive is formated Fat32 and cannot store anything greater then 4GB which is why Macrium split the image up into pieces.

If the stuff on the external is not important you can reformat it to NTFS or ExFat to resolve the file size issue.
That's what I thought initially, but..
"and the last one is 115GB "
 
Jun 22, 2019
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Thanks for the interest in my issue. A quick update.

You are correct popatim about my external HDD being formatted Fat32, that is why Macrium split the image.

I rebooted on the Macrium Rescue USB, gave up trying to allocate the unallocated space on the larger new NVMe SSD and just did a Macrium restore on to the NVME SSD which succeeded. Macrium sorted out all the individual image files and stitched them back together as part of the restore.

I then powered down the laptop and replaced the SSD in my laptop with the new NVMe SSD. I powered back up but the laptop would not boot from the new drive? I went into the BIOS and the new drive is recognised but will not boot. I researched the BIOS setting and all seems to be OK.

I tried a boot repair on the NVMe SSD in Macrium and it said that it was successful but the drive would still not boot!

After some research and reading the links provided by USAFRet it seems that the windows (or Samsung) NVMe device driver is required before the SSD can be seen by Windows. But the driver wont load unless the drive can be seen by Windows, so it seems that I am in a never ending loop here, unless I do a clean windows install which I do not want to do. I cant get the driver to load in Windows unless I can get the NVMe SSD to boot to Windows and I cant boot to Windows without the driver present!

The only solution I can see is to buy an external NVMe enclosure and connect the NVMe SSD via USB 3.1 to my laptop. Then hopefully windows will find the drive and load the NVMe driver. I can then do a straight clone between the existing internal SATA SSD and the external NVMe SSD.

I am starting to lose the will to live!!!!

Unless anyone can suggest how I can resolve the driver issue?

Regards,

Steve
 
Jun 22, 2019
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GOOD NEWS!!!!!

I watched a YouTube video (
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kROBM-6otoU
) and the presenter had exactly the same problem as me trying to clone a SATA SSD to a NVMe SDD but in a desktop computer.

He solved it by mounting the NVMe SSD onto a PCIe card with a M.2 slot built-in. He then mounted it into a spare PCIe slot in his desktop before doing a clone using the Samsung Magician software. But I have a laptop with no spare slots so not a solution for me.

But, I then read the comments below the video and one guy solved it in a laptop by booting the laptop with the cloned NVMe SSD in safe mode. This allowed windows to load and then find the NVMe SSD and load the PCIe NVMe drivers.

I TRIED THIS AND IT WORKED !!!!!!!!

Laptop now fully working and very fast!

Thank you to everyone who contributed to help solve this issue, especially USAFRet, you are a star!
 

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