How-to: copy HDD to SSD with correct 4k alignment

Prevent performance loss!


Step-by-step: copying HDD to SSD with correct alignment

The most common occurrence of unaligned partitions result when people copy an existing installation of Windows to an SSD with tools that don't pay specific attention to the alignment. Even some dedicated migration software you get with SSDs can forget to check alignment.   That free tool, the MiniTool Partition Wizard, is able to properly copy a hard disk to an SSD with correct alignment. This is how:

Step 1

First connect your new SSD as extra disk to your computer. With a desktop you can use an unused Serial ATA port, and on a laptop you can use a USB 3.0 to SATA adapter cable. Install the MiniTool Partition Wizard. When you open the program it should show you both your hard disk with the existing partitions and the new, empty SSD. 


Step 2

Click the Copy Disk Wizard on the left, which takes you to a step-by-step wizard.


Step 3

First you select the source disk, which in this case is the hard disk. You can tell by the name, and also by the fact it contains partitions.


Step 4

Select the target disk now, in this case the SSD.


Step 5

If the target disk is larger or smaller than the source, you select Fit partitions to entire disk. The entire capacity of the SSD will then be used. Don't forget to check the box first for Force to align partitions to 1MB. It ensures correct 4k alignment.


Step 6

Click Finish.


Step 7

When you click Apply in the upper left corner, the process will start. Windows will be rebooted.


Step 7

When the copy is complete, you can connect the new SSD to where the hard disk was connected (after turning off the computer of course). From now on, the computer will boot up from the SSD.      


Also read these hard disk/ssd articles on Hardware.Info

The Hardware.Info website uses cookies.