2022EaseUS Todo Backup

Data Protection & Windows Migration

  • Flexible backup plans upon specific days or a scheduled event
  • Easy backup and restore the disk, operating system, and data files
  • Fast clone disk/partition and Windows operating system between HDD and SSD
  • Create a WinPE bootable rescue media and create a Windows portable USB drive
  Free Download

Support Windows 11/10/8/7

100% Secure

How to Replace a Hard Drive and Reinstall an Operating System? See How We Can Help

Updated by Jean on May 07, 2022
Written by Tracy King

Quick Navigation:

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Replace Hard Drive and Reinstall Operating System

1. Preparation...Full steps

2. New Hard Drive Installation...Full steps

3. Keep the installed OS or Clean Install...Full steps

4. Change Boot Order (If you have two...Full steps

With time the computer system or the laptop tends to slow down and cause trouble to users. There could be various reasons for that, but one of the most common of them is the hard disk problems. If your system is very old, the hard disk has probably started to wear down and causing the PC to slow down. If your computer freezes randomly and you are experiencing the Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) frequently on your PC, it is a clear sign of hard drive failure. 

Before the hard disk stopped working altogether, it is better to replace it with the new one as it might allow you to save your precious data and restore it later. If you have decided to replace your old hard disk with a new one or are planning to replace the HDD with SSD, this post will guide you step by step on how to proceed and complete the hard drive replacement and reinstall the operating system in the new drive.

Part 1: Preparation

Before moving forward to replace the hard disk of your PC, you require a few preparations beforehand so that the hard drive replacement can be done with ease.

Backup the Essential Data

You might want to replace your old hard drive with the new one, but you definitely don't want to lose the essential data it carries. Before replacing the old hard disk, you should back up all the necessary data it holds so that you can restore that data in the new hard drive. You can back up everything, including:

  • Your personal images or videos stored on the disk
  • Applications and operating system installed
  • Movies and music present on the hard disk
  • Games collection

Backing up the data is essential even if you are not replacing the hard drive. If you don't backup, you can lose vital data in malware threats like a Ransomware attack. To keep your data secure, regularly perform a backup and keep installed a robust security solution like MalwareFox on your device.

For performing the backup, you can use various ways. Currently, the best way is to transfer all essential data to Cloud Storage. It is the safest and secure method to backup. Other than that, you can store the data in physical drives such as external hard drives, or if the data is not so large, it can be stored in USB drives as well. To back up the data in the USB drive, you can use the EaseUS Todo Backup.

1. Insert the external USB drive on which you want to backup.

2. Download and install the EaseUS Todo Backup tool

  Free Download

Support Windows 11/10/8/7

Step 1. To initiate a backup, click the Select backup contents option.

create file backup step1

Step 2. There are four data backup categories, File, Disk, OS, and Mail, click File.

create file backup step2

Step 3. On the left, both local and network files will be shown. You may extend the directory to pick the backup files.

File backup

Step 4. Follow the on-screen instructions and choose a location to store the backup.

File backup step4

Click Options to encrypt the backup with a password in Backup Options, then click Backup Scheme to specify the backup schedule and start the backup at a certain event. There are also other additional choices you may choose to tailor the backup process to your requirements.

Backup options

Step 5. The backup may be stored on a local disk, EaseUS' online service, or NAS.

file backup step4

Step 6. EaseUS Todo Backup enables customers to back up data to a third-party cloud drive as well as its own cloud drive.

If you want to back up data to a cloud drive provided by a third party, choose Local Drive, scroll down to add Cloud Device, and then add and log in to your account.

Backup to cloud
You can also choose the EaseUS cloud drive. Sign up for an EaseUS Account, then click EaseUS Cloud and log in.

backup to easeus cloud

Step 7. Click Backup Now to begin the backup process. The backup job will be presented as a card on the left side of the panel after it has been finished. Right-click the backup job to handle it further.

File backup step7

Get a new Hard Drive

For replacing the old drive, you need a robust new drive. You can get any or both of the SSD or HDD as a new hard disk for your PC. Deciding on which type of drive to get can be confusing, especially if you don't have much knowledge about them. However, by answering a few questions, you might easily decide on that. 

Prepare a new hard drive

Ask yourself whether you want a greater speed or a larger disk space. If you wish your system or drive to perform faster, you must go for the SSD. On the other hand, if you want ample storage space, HDD is a better option. There might be some users who desire speed and storage both; for them, the hybrid option is best. The hybrid option lets you use both SSD and HDD in a single device. The SSD can be used for OS and application installation, while the HDD can be used for data storage purposes. But this will work only if your desktop is designed to handle two drives.

Get a Hard Drive Cable

If you are replacing the hard drive on your PC, getting a suitable hard drive cable is equally important as getting a hard drive. Irrespective of the size, all modern hard disks use the Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA) power cable for power and data transformation. 

The SATA power cable is a 15-pin cable that runs from the PC's power supply. Though all modern computer system runs of SATA power cable, if your device still offers the older 4-pin Molex cables, you can get the adapters for it. 

Sata Power Cable

The SATA data cable is required for data transformation. It is available in different lengths and shapes. You must obtain the cable that best suits your PC. 

SATA Data Cable

If you are replacing the hard drive on your laptop, there is no need for a cable as you just have to fit the new drive in the allotted slot.

Clone the Current Hard Drive (Optional)

If you want your system exactly in the current state after replacing the hard disk, you can clone the current hard disk to the new one. For cloning, you need to connect the new hard disk to the system and the EaseUS Todo Backup application. If your system does not have a slot for adding a second hard drive, you will also need a SATA-to-USB connection cable to connect it through a USB slot. Follow these steps:

1. Connect the new hard drive to the system.

2. Download and install the EaseUS Todo Backup tool. For performing cloning, you will require a license key.

  Free Download

Support Windows 11/10/8/7

Step 1. Launch EaseUS Todo Backup and click "Tools" at the top right corner, you can see clone and other utilities.

system clone step1

Step 2. Choose the source disk or partition as well as the target disk. (Make sure the space of the target disk is larger than that of the source disk or partition.)

clone disk step3

Step 3. The clone would permanently wipe out all data on the target disk/partition. If you have backup your data in advance, just click "Continue."

clone disk step4

Step 4. Click "Proceed" to start cloning.

clone system step4

Finally, cloning would be started. 

It might take few hours to complete depending on the data size and disk type. Ensure that the system is getting a continuous power supply.

This completes part 1 of the hard drive replacement procedure. Now moving on to the next part to remove the old hard disk and insert the new one to replace it.

Part 2: New Hard Drive Installation

If you are replacing the old hard disk, you have to remove it and make space for the new one. You can also keep the old drive attached to the system and add a new hard drive.

Remove the Old Hard Drive

To connect the new hard disk to the CPU, you first need to disconnect and remove the old one.

Follow these steps to remove the old hard disk from the system successfully:

Note: Before performing the following steps, you are advised to use an anti-static mat and wristband. This will ensure that you don't transfer any built-up static electricity to the computer's sensitive internal parts. Also, remember that the steps may vary from computer to computer, so if these steps are not applicable for your device, refer to your manufacturer site for the guide to remove the hard disk.

1. Completely turn off the computer and unplug all the cables and other attachments.

2. Open the case of the CPU. You might require a screwdriver as the case is usually bound with the screws. Some modern CPU manufacturers provide a sliding mechanism to open the case. 

Open computer case

3. After opening the case, locate the hard drive and detach the power supply cables and data connectors from it. 

Detach old hard drive

4. The drive might be held to a case with screws. To remove the drive, you have to unscrew them and pull it out. Many modern device manufacturers allow a tool-less approach to detach the hard disk from its slot. In that case, you just have to slide the disk as directed to pull it out.

Place the new Hard Disk

After removing the old hard disk from its slot, it's time to install the new one. It won't be difficult; you just have to 

reverse the steps of the previous section.

1. Place the new hard disk on the case which was held by the old one.

2. If required, attach the new hard disk to the case with the screws. Make sure the disk is attached correctly before moving to the next step. Try to leave as much space as possible around the drive, as the disk works better if it is cool because of proper airflow. 

Install new hard drive

3. Attach one end of both data and power SATA cable to the drive, and other ends to the slot in the motherboard. Basically, just attach the cables you have detached from the old hard disk. 

Plug sata cables to new hard drive

4. Close the CPU case and fix it with the screws as it was before.

Part 3: Keep the installed OS or Clean Install an OS

After installing the hard drive, you require an operating system to run the system. Here you have two options, either keep the OS of the previous hard drive or clean install the new OS on the new drive.

Keep the previously Installed OS

If you want to keep the previously installed OS and all your data of the old hard drive into the new one, you need to clone the old drive. Cloning the old drive is explained in Part 1. You can do it easily with the EaseUS Todo Backup tool.

Clean Install an OS

If you want a fresh start with your new hard disk, you can clean install the operating system and applications. To clean install an OS, you will need a bootable device containing that OS. In the case of Windows 10, you can easily create a bootable USB drive using Media Creation Tool for installing the latest Windows 10 OS. 

After creating the bootable device for OS installation, follow these steps:

1. Insert the bootable USB or DVD and power ON your PC or laptop. 

2. Repeatedly press the Escape key to enter the boot menu. There might be a different key for a different manufacturer to enter the boot menu. Search on the internet for the appropriate boot menu key of your device.

3. Use the boot menu to begin the fresh installation of the OS.

4. Since you are installing the OS into a new hard drive, you will be prompted to divide your hard disk into partitions. Do as per your preference, or let the default settings handle it.

5. Your system might restart several times during the installation.

6. Once the OS is installed, you will see a login screen to enter the OS.

Restore the Backup

After installing the OS, if you want to restore the applications and other data from a backup, you can do that easily using the EaseUS Todo Backup tool.

  Free Download

Support Windows 11/10/8/7

Step 1. Launch EaseUS Todo Backup, click "Browse to Recover".

Click Browse to Recover

Step 2. Guide to your backup destination, choose the backup file you want to recover. (The backup file created by EaseUS Todo Backup is a pbd file.)

Choose the backup file

Step 3. Choose the recovery location. You can recover data to a specific location or to original location.

File recovery step3

Step 4. Click "Proceed" and the recovery would start.

Part 4: Change Boot Order (If you have two hard disks together)

If you haven't replaced the hard disk, but added a new one, then you might want to change the boot order if you have installed the OS in your new hard drive. 

To change the boot order, follow these steps:

1. Restart PC and press F2/F12/Del to enter BIOS.

2. Go to the Boot menu, and set the new disk as the first boot drive at the Boot Priority section. 

Change bios settings

3. Save all the changes and restart the PC. 

Your computer will automatically boot up from the newly cloned disk.

Bottom Line

Replacing the old hard drive with the new one can be confusing if you haven't done it before. With the steps listed in this post, you can easily do that. Follow and perform each step carefully and to the point for successfully replacing the hard drive and installing the operating system on it.

Was This Page Helpful?

Updated by Jean

Author Jean has been writing tech articles since she was graduated from university. She has been part of the EaseUS team for over 5 years. Her special focuses are data recovery, disk partitioning, data space optimization, data backup and Mac OS. By the way, she's an aviation fan!

Read full bio

Written by Tracy King

Tracy joined in EaseUS in 2013 and has been working with EaseUS content team for over 7 years. Being enthusiastic in computing and technology, she writes tech how-to articles and share technical solutions about Windows & Mac data recovery, file/system backup and recovery, partition management and iOS/Android data recovery.

Read full bio

Product Reviews

TrustScore 4.7 | 47 reviews
  • Taking everything into consideration, we can say that EaseUS Todo Backup Home can offer you a little extra sense of security with a set of advanced tools. The interface provides quick adaptation, every process guiding you all the way through so you don't get stuck or further damage your system rather than keeping it safe.

    Read More
  • EaseUS Todo Backup Free lets you create backups of your important files or your entire computer through its streamlined interface. Just choose the backup type you'd like to get started, and let the program do the reset.

    Read More
  • EaseUS includes all the features I expect from backup software like versioning, incremental backups, and scheduling. For more advanced users, EaseUS allows you to install a pre-boot environment onto your hard drive so you can use it to restore files without burning a CD or putting it on an external USB drive.

    Read More


EaseUS Todo Backup

Smart backup tool for your files and entire computer in Windows 10/8/7.

Product Reviews

Install Windows on Multiple Computers at Once? No Problem!

Learn how to install Windows 11/10/7 and special programs/software on a batch of computers. Use 10 minutes to do the 10 hours work without making a single mistake!

Get Free Solution!