With Microsoft ceasing support for Windows 7, many users are left wondering what their next step should be. While most will most probably upgrade to Windows 10, some may opt to remain with Windows 7.
If they choose to opt for the Windows 7 Extended Support, they will be able to continue using Windows 7 safely for another 2 years. However, some may choose to keep both Windows 10 and Windows 7, albeit on different drives.
While Windows 10 may be better optimized for older hardware, those that wish to use Windows 7 can compensate for the lack of optimization by migrating it to an external SSD.
Naturally, this operation isn’t just a mere Copy and Paste operation, and requires that you use certain methods, especially if you want to conserve all user data, or if you don’t want to reinstall it again.
How do I migrate Windows 7 to an SSD?
1. Use Microsoft’s own tools
Performing this operation using just Microsoft’s own set of tools involves performing the following actions:
- Create a backup using Windows 7‘s Backup and Restore
- Create bootable media with Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool
- Restore the system image to SSD
1.1 Create a backup using Windows 7‘s Backup and Restore
This step is extremely easy to accomplish, but for those of you that still don’t know how to do it, check out this in-depth guide for more information.
1.2 Create bootable media with Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool
- Download Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool and ISO files from Microsoft.
- Launch the app
- Click Browse to locate Windows 7 ISO files from your computer
- Select the USB device as the media type
- Begin copying
1.3 Restore the system image to SSD
- Replace your PC’s hard drive with the SSD, then connect the bootable USB to it
- Boot the PC using the bootable USB as the source
- When the Windows 7 Install menu appears, select Repair your Computer
- Select Restore your computer using a system image that you created earlier
- Click Next
- Check Use the latest available system image(recommended)
- Click Next
- Switch the boot order to set the SSD as the first choice
2. Migrate Windows 7 to an SSD using third-party tools
This option is by far the fastest and the easiest, as it drastically reduces the number of steps taken. One such example is by using AOMEI Backupper Professional.
This tool makes everything all the more easier to handle, and it drastically reduces the time wasted.
- Download and run AOMEI Backupper Professional
- Connect SSD to your computer
- Go to the Clone tab
- Select System Clone
- Select your SSD as the destination
- Click Next
- Check the SSD Alignment option to optimize your SSD
- Click Start Clone
- Switch the location of the HDD and the SDD
- Change the boot order of your PC to take the SSD first
By following these steps, you should be able to successfully migrate your Windows 7 OS and user data to a new SSD without any data loss or the need to reinstall.
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