Alignment question cloning HHD -> SSD


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zgrayfox
zgrayfox
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W7 Pro running MR 6.3.1875
Recently Cloned from a 2TB Sata HDD to a 500GB mSata SSD
HDD was MBR with three partitions:
39.2 MB 16-bit FAT Primary Dell Utility
15.25 GB NTFS Active Dell Recovery
1.80 TB NTFS Primary OS

When using "partition properties" with the first partition on the clone target (SSD), MR indicated the alignment was XP alignment and this was not changeable.  Also if a entered a new partition size, when I clicked OK it always reverted back to 39.2 MB.  When the other two partitions were dragged to the target, the alignment indicated Vista/W7 alignment and I was able to resize these partitions.  With regards to the first partition, is this the expected behavior for MR? 

FTR - As usual, MR worked great! - W7 system was already using ACHI drivers, used a USB3/mSata adapter to clone HDD to the SSD (reducing the size of the system partition), shutdown the systerm and removed HDD and installed the SSD to internal mSata connector, powered back up and everything has been running fine since.









jphughan
jphughan
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Interesting, not sure why that wasn't able to be changed. If you didn't already try this, you may need to adjust the alignment before you drag another partition from the source to the destination down next to it, which means you'd have to drag them one at a time rather than selecting "Copy selected partitions". Otherwise, maybe there's a special type code on that partition?

That said, alignment only really matters for performance when working with disks that use 4K sectors, and performance would hardly be a priority with the Dell OEM partition. The issue was that XP for some reason started partitions at sector 63, which isn't evenly divisible by 4, and because disks with 4K sectors still emulate legacy 512-byte sectors, this layout meant that reading/writing a 4K logical allocation unit (the default for NTFS) requires reading/writing two physical sectors on the disk. FAT32 defaults to 8KB logical sectors, so the issue exists there as well. This was fixed for Vista. But as long as your main partitions are properly aligned on a 4K boundary (the Vista style), then I wouldn't worry about it.
Edited 23 July 2017 7:43 PM by jphughan
Nick
Nick
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@zgrayfox

Thanks for posting. 

There's a built-in CHS alignment restriction for FAT16 partitions.  This goes back to the days when FAT16 partitions couldn't be located on a system using Logical Block Addressing (LBA) and some (notably DELL) PC's couldn't access the utility partition if it wasn't aligned on a track boundary. Whether this restriction matters to your PC is largely irrelevant as the Dell Utility partition will very rarely, if ever, be accessed and so won't affect your SSD performance or longevity in the slightest. 

Kind Regards

Nick - Macrium Support

Edited 23 July 2017 8:22 PM by Nick
zgrayfox
zgrayfox
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@jphughan
Thanks for your comments.  I did drag the FAT16 partition to the target first - the alignment was XP and not changeable.

@Nick
Thanks for the explanation RE FAT 16 & CHS alignment restriction and reassurance on this not impacting SSD performance/longevity.

Again all is good - MR made HDD to a smaller SSD transition a very easy and successful process.



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