Can I clone to a smaller drive?


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enchant
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I have a 1TB drive with three partitions (C:, D:, E: ).  It's an old-fashioned magnetic drive and I'd like to replace it with an SSD.  Thing is, I'm not using that much of it.  I just checked, and I'm using a total of 220G on all three partitions.  Is there a way for me to clone that 1TB drive to a 512GB SSD, reducing the size of each partition?

Edited 14 January 2021 10:55 PM by enchant
dbminter
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I believe it's possible.  I think there are ways to change the size of a restored partition on the restore operation, but I've never done them before.  Someone with more knowledge can point out how, though I think it's in the Knowledge Base somewhere.

jphughan
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The "Cloning a disk" knowledgebase article here covers this. The crucial parts are Steps 4 and 5.  If that isn't detailed enough, as it wasn't for someone else here recently, I wrote an even more granular tutorial here.  My scenario shows cloning to a larger disk in order to use all the space, but the steps are the same.  The only difference is the value you'd enter into the "Free" field, but the principle is exactly the same as shown in that tutorial, namely that you set your Free space to the amount of space you want to have available AFTER the partition you're resizing so that you can bring down any other partitions that are located after the one being resized.

enchant
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Excellent.  Thanks for that!  now I've just got to buy me one.

enchant
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Just throwing some info out there in case anyone searches on the same issue.  I *was* able to downsize without any problems. One thing that concerned me is that the cloning process generally takes 20-30 minutes to clone from 1TB drive to another.  Going from the 1TB drive to the 512GB SSD took nearly an hour and a half. But there were no errors and the SSD booted right up with no trouble.  Pretty happy with the speed increase, too!

jphughan
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If this is your first experience with an SSD, then you'll never go back. Smile  In terms of the clone time, if your previous clone times referred to a setup where you periodically cloned the same source disk to the same destination disk, then those clones would likely have used Rapid Delta Clone, which is a feature of paid Reflect versions and can be a huge time saver.  Essentially, if you previously cloned that source disk to that destination disk, then on subsequent executions of that clone job, instead of cloning everything all over again, Reflect will instead analyze the current state of the target as compared to the source and then only clone the changes necessary to make the destination current relative to the source.  That of course can't happen when you're cloning to a brand new target for the first time.  (It also can't happen if the target partition is smaller than the source, as was the case here.)

enchant
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Thanks for the info!

I've been wanting to switch over to SSD forever, but I simply couldn't justify the cost.  It was always hundred of dollars. So I'd check every couple years or so.  This time when I checked, it was about $50.  Yeah, I can do that.  I've also got a 2TB drive with all my data (music, video, etc.) and I'm toying with the idea of upgrading that as well.  Not *quite* as cheap, but worth considering.

Edited 19 January 2021 2:56 PM by enchant
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JP's absolutely right about never going back once you experience an SSD.  I got my first SSD about 2 years ago.  That PC needed replacing after a year and a half and I made sure to spend the extra to get another SSD in it.  And, every PC I have from now on will boot Windows from an SSD.  Smile

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If cost is a concern, then upgrading a data drive to an SSD isn't nearly as good a value, because you having to spend more money on a larger SSD for data where the added performance won't deliver as much of a benefit.  If you were reading and writing a lot of huge files all the time there, then that could be worthwhile, but if that drive is just "bulk storage" for media that you only access casually rather than doing large copy/move/update operations frequently, then keeping that on a regular drive probably makes a lot more sense.  Having your OS and applications on an SSD is the key. Smile

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I have a USB 3.0 HDD for data.  It's also where I store my Reflect images.  Given it's a 14 TB disc, I would need several SSD's to get that kind of space, although I think someone makes an 8 GB SSD for like an outrageous price, and then there's the price of that many SSD's.  It's simply far more economical to use spinning discs for that kind of data.  It rarely gets changed or accessed.  And the image files are rather large, which can become issues with SSD's.  The cache can easily run out and you're back to spinning HDD speeds.

GO

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