How to Clone Large HDD to Smaller SSD Successfully (Free)?

Posted by @AOMEI

March 29, 2019

What’s the most concerned problem in cloning large HDD to smaller SSD? This page presents how to clone hard drive to smaller SSD successfully and without data loss in Windows 10/8/7. Let me walk you through the guide.

Why clone large HDD to smaller SSD?

"My current hard drive has accompanied me for five years and now it is time to replace it with a new one. The solid state drive (SSD) is recommended by many computer users and I bought one already, yet my current HDD is 500 GB in size and the SSD is 60 GB in size. Is there any possible way to clone larger HDD to smaller SSD? I guess the stored data could fit, so just the problem of the partition layout. Thanks."

Hard drive upgrading is not uncommon nowadays. More and more users are seeking for better performance on computer. In general, several main reasons account for cloning to smaller SSD.

  • Fast running speed and high performance. It is known to all, SSDs have better performance in writing and reading speed, system security, compatibility, etc. SSDs are eventually accepted by public.

  • Price-based consideration. With high technologies equipped, SSDs are more expensive than traditional hard drives. An SSD is smaller than an HDD usually at the same cost.

  • SSD for OS and HDD for storagearrangement. Cloning current HDD to smaller SSD as the boot drive, and the HDD could be used as the secondary storage in the future.

  • Saving time and efforts. Cloning hard drive entirely to SSD saves the steps of reinstalling operating system and applications. Besides, configured system settings will keep intact after cloning. Therefore, comparing to fresh install, this method is really time-saving.

Well, how do you perform the task easily and with least worries? Since Windows misses the cloning feature, you have to turn to third-party disk cloning software. But which one should you choose from dazzled tools?

Powerful software to clone to smaller SSD in Windows

There are many cloning tools available in the internet that are capable of cloning hard drive to the same or larger one, but are they possible to clone larger HDD to smaller SSD? 

AOMEI Backupper Standard, is able to clone from large disk to smaller disk due to its professional technologies. The partitions will be automatically adjusted aiming to fit the smaller SSD during cloning progress. Further, For SSD cloning, it offers a special option to improve SSD’s performance and prolong its lifespan, named “Align partition to optimize for SSD”. An option will be seen at the final confirm page.

It fully supports UEFI, so it allows you to clone MBR to GPT disk or back without disk conversion. What’s more, the cloning process will be running in the background and it won’t interrupt you using the PC. Windows 10/8/7/XP/Vista supported. Let's see how to complete the task together.

How to clone bigger HDD to smaller SSD step by step?

Providing the intuitive interface, AOMEI Backupper allows you to clone hard drive to small SSD with a few simple steps. In the first place, connect or install the smaller SSD to your computer. To start clone larger drive to smaller drive:

1. Download and install this software on your computer, and open it.


2. Click on “Disk Clone” under Clone tab.


3. Select the source disk by clicking on the large HDD, and click on "Next". Then click on the small SSD to mark it as the destination disk, and click “Next” to continue.

Select Sourece

4. Check the option “Align partition to optimize for SSD”, which is essential to achieve the best performance of the SSD. Then click “Start Clone” to begin to clone hard drive to SSD.

Start Clone

5. (Optional) To boot from the cloned SSD, you’d have to either change boot order in BIOS or replace HDD with SSD manually.

Tips: To resize partition during cloning, please upgrade to superior versions. Higher versions also support migrating operating system to SSD.

Beside the feature to clone large HDD to smaller SSD, AOMEI Backupper has also been taken as an excellent backup and restore software. It provides the most common used solutions to protect your data, system backup, disk backup, partition backup, file backup, and file sync. Scheduled backup is also supported. In fact, you can clone hard drive in Windows 10 to new disk with the same steps.