4) Calculate the size of your Windows partition for use on the SSD:
This is where the Samsung Ghost Data Migration Guide omission / drive partition size limitation can stop your effort to move to your new SSD drive. The guide only covers moving from a smaller hard drive to a larger SSD or from drives of equal size, this may not be a problem for some laptop users however no mention is made of moving from a larger hard drive to a smaller but faster SSD which is a more common scenario.
The root of the problem is that Ghost 15 can not shrink a large Windows partition or other partitions down to a size that will fit on your SSD. Windows 7 does have a shrink option but it can only reduce the size of a partition down to a point where the first unmovable files such as the System Volume Folder and MFT is located. Typically you may be able to shrink a 400GB Windows partition down to about 200GB assuming there is less than 200GB of used space of course. This is where a utility named Partition Wizard can save the day.
Assuming that you have a 400GB Windows partition and a 65GB data partition (as my computer does), the used space is less than 60GB on the Windows partition and you want to keep to most the import 20GB of the data partition on your SSD, then Partition Wizard can reduce your Windows partition down a size (about 87GB) that will fit on a 128GB SSD. This leaves about 10GB of free space for future use and another 20% of the 87GB total to meet the minimum free space requirement of a Windows 7 partition. The remaining space (about 20GB) on the SSD drive is for your data partition.
Note: Remember that Windows Disk Management shows drive sizes in decimal value. GB / 1.074 (128GB = 119 in decimal). About 10% of the total space of an SSD should remain unused (Unallocated) to provide for “Provisioning”, Garbage Collection and TRIM. That removes about 12GB from the usable 119GB (decimal value) of the SSD drive, leaving 107GB for available use. Subtract 20GB for the data partition and you have about 87GB (Decimal) available for your Windows partition.
Note: Windows requires about 20% free space in order to function properly over the long tem without getting one of those “low drive space” warnings. You also need some free space for adding new applications. I would allow at least another 10GB of free disk space just for additional applications.
Using the above values the total amount of used space (including the page and hibernation files) of your hard drive’s Windows partition should be no more than 64GB of the 87GB total partition size. So I’ve listed a series of optional steps you can take to make to trim down the fat.
For those lucky enough to have a 256GB SSD drive the size of the Windows partition could easily be increased to 175GB.
5) Optional - Move your user’s data files (Documents, Photo, Music, Etc.) to your USB drive:
How much of your data should you copy to the USB drive and delete from the Data and Windows partitions is dependent on the amount (in GB) stored on the hard drive and the size of the SSD drive. I would copy everything (all the data files) as at least some can be copied back to the SSD later (if available space permits). a) Create a folder on your USB drive which will be the destination for your and any additional user account name’s data files backup. The root level folder names should be unique (examples: John, Jim).
b) Drag and drop each of the user account folders to the USB drive. Since you are placing the files on a different drive your files will be copied to the USB drive, leaving the original files still in your account.
c) If you have files stored in custom folders located on the Windows partition you need to move them as well.
d) Once you have verified that a set of duplicate files are indeed located on the USB drive, then you can delete them from the hard drive one user account at a time.
e) Move as many of the files from your hard drive’s data partition to the USB drive until the remaining files total less than the 20GB data partition your will be creating on the SSD.
6) Optional - Disable Hibernation:
The hibernation file size is about 75% of the amount of “accessible” physical memory. So on a computer with 4GB will have a hiberfil.sys of about 2.55GB for a 32Bit version of Windows and about 6.2GB for a 64Bit version of Windows that has 8GB of memory installed.
Click Start, right click on Computer and select properties to see the usable amount of memory list to the right of the “Installed Memory” value.
Notes: 1) You will need to set Windows Explorer to show hidden files (Menu bar/Tools/Folder options/View tab. Click on Show hidden files, folder, or drives. Remove the check marks from all three “Hide” boxes in the Advance settings list. Next click the Apply to folders button, answer Yes when prompted, click the Apply button and then the OK button. Exit the Control Panel Power options window.
2) Laptop users may want to keep hibernation enabled to extend the time you are able to run off of your battery.
How to Disable Hibernation: Click Start/All Programs/Accessories/Right click on the “Command Prompt” option and select “Run as administrator”, click Yes. At the command prompt enter: powercfg.exe -h off Press the Enter key Next enter: exit and press the enter key to close out the command prompt window.
Now if you look at the files and folders in C: you should see that the hiberfil.sys file has been deleted and only the pagefile.sys file remains, you just saved another 6.28GB of drive space, on a 128GB SSD drive that’s a significant amount.
7) Reduce or disable the amount of space allowed for system restore points : (Strongly Suggested)
My 500GB hard drive is set to 10GB, for the 128GB SSD drive you should reduce this down to 4% of the size of the Windows partition or about 3.5GB. Note that when doing so all restore points that are in excess of 3.5GB and or the oldest restore points that have been created will be deleted from the hard drive. Disabling system protection will of course delete all existing restore points.
Click Start/Control Panel/System/System protection/Configure/Restore Settings. Select the “Turn off system protection” option and click the “Apply” button and then click “Yes” when prompted. Click “OK” to exit out.
You will enable System Restore after you have moved Windows to the SSD.
Intro: How to move Windows 7 from a larger Hard Drive to a smaller SSD drive using Norton Ghost 15 Page 2- 1) Install Ghost 15. Page 3 - 2) Create a System Restore Disk (SRD). Page 4 - 3) Create a baseline image backup. Page 5 - 4) Calculate the size of your Windows partition for use on the SSD. 5) Optional: Move user’s data files (Documents, Photo, Music, Etc.) to your USB drive. 6) Optional: Disable Hibernation. 7) Reduce the amount of space allowed for system restore points.
Page 6 - 8) Run Disk Cleanup and check amount of used disk space on hard drive. 9) Check amount of used disk space on hard drive. 10) Disable the Windows Scheduled Defragmentation.
Page 7 - 11) Shrink the Windows partition down to a size that will fit on your SDD. Page 8 - 12) Create Image Backup of the System, Reserved and Windows 7 partitions. 13) Verification of ACHI Mode. 14) Install and initialize the SSD drive.
Page 9 & 10 - 15) Coping the hard drive to your SSD drive from within the Windows environment.
Page 11 - 16) Create a “Performance Benchmark” reference baseline. 17) Enable Hibernation. 18) Turn on System Protection (restore points). 19) Update the performance index scores.
Page 12 - 20) Create your first Restore Point. 21) Create your first image backup of the SSD drive. 22) What to do with your hard drive. 23) Verify Windows 7 boots and both drives are listed in Disk Management.
Page 13 - 24) Move the Windows 7 pagefile (Optional). 25) Restore user’s documents from USB drive to newly created partition on hard drive.