Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

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Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

Postposted on Fri Aug 17, 2012 2:13 pm

Spent the morning hating Dell and the world in general trying to simply use Norton Ghost 14 to migrate a 75GB Dell OS/boot drive to a new Samsung 830 Series 128GB SSD. The SSD will boot but hangs every time just before getting to the log on screen. Would welcome either ideas or mockery as long as I get a hint.

Thanks all

P.S. I am lugging my home system down after lunch to see if I can get it to copy better when the cloned drive is not the booted device. Cheap Dell systems at work only have two SATA ports so none of them can be used to mediate a transfer.
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Re: Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

Postposted on Fri Aug 17, 2012 3:06 pm

I recently converted a laptop to an 830 and was recommended CloneZilla. It's a bit obfuscating, particularly the procedure for making a bootable USB keydrive, but it worked perfectly. The thread is here:

viewtopic.php?f=5&t=82616
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Re: Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

Postposted on Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:10 pm

Thank you. I lugged my home system to work, which due to numerous upgrades from HDs to Intel SSD's, has Intels licenced version of Acronis on it. Apparently Norton Ghost 14 cannot do the job of making a bootable OS partition and in addition, refuses to copy the first Dell partition (which not being copied, might be related to not booting). Acronis seems to be happy to copy both partitions. I am running that now and if that does not work then I will try your suggestion. Off to read that thread now.


Edit : P.S.
I should add, I have had no problem copying my XP-32 OS and partitions to an 80GB intel SSD for one laptop, and similarly, no problem cloning a win7 installation on another laptop to a 160GB intel 320 series SSD and further, no problem cloning my desktop XP-64 OS partition to intel SSD's. So, this would seem to be a Dell-related problem.
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Re: Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

Postposted on Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:24 pm

The missing Dell recovery partition is almost certainly the cause of your problem. In general, Acronis TrueImage is what I recommend for migrating commercial OEM Windows installations to SSD. Windows 7 backup/restore only works for a single-partition installation, and Acronis is - as you found - definitely superior to Ghost for this application.
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Re: Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

Postposted on Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:25 pm

My Acer laptop had a hidden partition, a recovery partition, and the main OS partition, and CloneZilla was able to make a functional copy. If Acronis doesn't get you there, it would be worth a shot.
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Re: Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

Postposted on Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:31 pm

Yeee! Haw! Intel Acronis did what Norton Ghost could not and copied both partitions in about 20 minutes and it boots super quick and all is well! Yay! That Acronis software apparently will work with any type of drive transferring to an SSD as long as you have at least one Intel SSD in the system (not necessarily involved in the transfer) when it checks.
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Re: Migrating a Dell OS drive to the Samsung 830 Series SSD

Postposted on Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:45 pm

I literally just got through doing this with my mother's Dell Zino. Indeed, on her system there were not one but two "extra" partitions without assigned drive letters (not technically "hidden" but not visible at the innocent user level): an NTFS "Recovery" partition (which had the MBR) and a FAT16 "DellUtility" partition (which is accessible from -- and expected to exist by -- the BIOS). I used the free version of Macrium Reflect, as recommended here, and it handled them fine. The Fat16 partition was aligned on the standard (and SSD-pessimal) 63 sector boundary but I left that alone; the "real" system partition (and the NTFS recovery partition) was optimally aligned and that was all I was concerned about. I was quite impressed with Reflect -- it was fairly intuitive with an explicit "clone" choice, made the alignment very clear, and even the help files were pretty good. The only gotcha I discovered was allowing "auto" for the drive letters on the cloned drive: this resulted in the cloned system partition being D: and Windows did not like that -- it booted fine, but would not load any user profile (presumably there was a hardcoded "C:\" in the registry for those). When I realized what the problem was, I was able to fix it via DiskPart from the recovery console. But I decided to go back and do it over anyway (I had other reasons for doing this also) and when I specified "C:" rather than "auto" for the system partition I got an exact clone and it booted up exactly like the HD it replaced (only faster). With that one caveat, I'll definitely recommend Reflect in the future.

One follow-up for Mr Bill: download and install the SSD Magician software from Samsung (definitely want the latest version from their site rather than whatever might be on a CD that came with your drive). Run the firmware update (likely it'll tell you your firmware is up to date, but if you somehow got an old drive with the out-of-date firmware, you definitely want to update it). And run the "OS Optimization" feature -- it'll remind you about and help you adjust/disable things like Defrag that you don't want to be using when you have an SSD. (Windows does this for itself when you install onto an SSD, but you have to do it manually when you clone from HD to SSD)
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