Replacing HDD with SSD

So, given a PC/Mobo that I purchased new in 2016 (i6700k CPU, nVidia 1080) with 2 HDD’s - can I just swap out the HDD’s with SSD’s? These are not boot drives.

I assume that since drive C:\ is an SSD (small for todays use) that the system would ‘just work’.

As far as I know you should be OK. The SSDs should use the same SATA cable if i recall correctly. You should be able to plug the SSD in and transfer the files off the HDD to the SSD before removing the HDD.


Its all fine, even if they are with the OS and bootable. You should use a clone software to do a complete 1:1 clone image of the old hdd to the ssd.
Install the software, add the sdd, clone the hdd to the ssd, turn off your pc, remove the hdd and insert the ssd on the same place and its fine to go.

Software recomedations: easeus partition manager, norton ghost, acronis disk image.

(i personally use the easeus)


Many thanks. I want to replace 2 HDD’s. They are pretty big 1Tb each; should be able to just copy what I really want to keep from D->E, replace D with an SSD, then copy E->D.

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Awesome. That’s what I figured but been years since I did this and I’m pretty sure they’re all SATA. This PC is getting old but with 32GB memory - and some faster drives (I’ve already replaced the PSU once) it should last for many more years. Just have to upgrade to Win11 at some point.


you can even clone to a bigger disk, if you config well the clone it will enlarge the free space to the new capacity of the new ssd.

As you want to replace 2 HDD you can even with some work and depending of their contents replace 2 hdd to a single ssd. but it requires some clone of one of them and copy paste from other.

Anyway the tactics all depends of what you have from-to and if you have free sata ports etc. sometimes if you have all the sata prts already used you should disconnect temporarily one of the disk to put temporary the new one to clone into it the source disk. Also you can use a usb dock station to connect external disk for the clone if that first solution is impossible. but attention that clone using usb it spend tons of time (depending of the speed and size of disk).

Anyway, always exist a good solution. if you want send me a message with you discord nick and we can voice talk and more interactively get a custom solution for your situation.


Ahhhh and by the way, for curiosity, you can even change the port of the sata of a cloned bootable disk, the problem is that you should then config your bios to boot from the other disk. But if you want to keep it simple, clone the disk and put the new one on the place of the old one.
Also if need to reconfig the Letter (D/E/F/G/…) of the disk, after the clone and reboot with the new cloned disk you can config to the desired letter.

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No Win 11 for i7 6700.

I’m in the same boat with my 7700.

I think you need at least 8th Gen.

retain the old drives,

depends, one of the HDDs could hold O/S Data.

I’ve seen weirdly setup systems that boot from a M.2 but if you removed the 1TB HDD, it killed the O/S as well (part of the PBE was on the 1TB).

That being said, I usually use WD supplied license Acronis (*since all my old HDDs were WD), to clone the partitions from the HDD to the SSD, then once I remove the HDD, release and change the SSD drive letter to what the HDD was so all shortcuts and such continue to work,.



I missed that memo. Now MSFT is really p—ing me off. Again. Except for games…ahem…simulations…it’s all the PC I need. Slow HDD not withstanding. Grrr. Thanks for the heads up.


Less MSFT, more Mainboard and OEM putting UEFI on drives during post initialization.

While 99% of the time, it’s windows 10/11, that’s because between the 2 they have 90% Marketshare,

But I have seen systems running Linux distributions with the same issue.

Simplest way is to simply unplug power to the HDDs, and power on.

You’ll know within a few seconds if part of the UEFI or PBE is on one of the drives as it wont even boot windows, but instead give your an error about missing boot or o/s information, sometimes it will say no O/S found.

I know it’s a popular configuration with OEMs, to avoid Purchase and removing drives, they put the PBE-UEFI on the HDD instead of the M.2, so removing the HDD would cause the system to act like there’s no O/S and sit at boot drive screen.

it’s dumb, but they do it all the time.

The other issue is Windows Swap file, if a swap file was configured to only use the HDDs as users somehow got the idea swap files kill SSDs *(Which is not true at all), they started forcing windows to put only on HDDs,

So you’d have to remove those volumes from the swap file configuration, or you May get blue screens for drive I/O inaccessible when the system attempts to access the page file.

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