How to Clone M.2 SSD with Only One Slot [Step-by-Step Guide]

Most laptops nowadays come with an M.2 slot for an SSD. If you want to clone M.2 SSD to another one, you are required to have two M.2 SSD slots. Here we will show you how to clone M.2 SSD with only one slot.

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Updated on Feb 26, 2024

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M.2 SSD is the next-generation storage device of the solid-state drive. It's smaller, faster, and more power-efficient than a regular SSD. So most people choose to use it as their hard drives. But with the use time increases, more and more data is stored in the SSD, and it gradually becomes full.

At this time, cloning M.2 SSD to a larger one is the best choice if you don't want to delete any data or reinstall the previous system. Moreover, if your M.2 SSD is going to fail soon, cloning it to another one in advance can avoid any data loss. This guide from EaseUS will offer your an effective way to clone M.2 SSD with only one slot.

🧰Tools You Will Use  EaseUS Disk Copy
  • An external USB HDD or USB to M.2 SSD converter and an extra USB cable.
  • A reliable disk cloning utility like EaseUS Disk Copy.

Download this awesome disk cloning software here

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What to Prepare If Your PC with Only One Slot

Most laptops nowadays come with only one M.2 slot for an SSD. If you want to clone SSD to another destination disk, you are required to have two M.2 SSD slots generally. But if your PC only has one slot, how can you do it? 

Actually, there are ways out. 

For laptops that only have one M.2 slot, the first way is to use a bootable cloning tool and an external USB HDD to clone a bootable hard drive. So, you can use the cloned SSD as boot drive and boot into the cloning tool, make a drive image into the target disk(destination disk), then shut down, replace the M.2 SSD with the larger one, boot into the cloning tool again and copy the drive image from the HDD into the brand new drive.

Another available way is using a USB to M.2 SSD converter, and you can use the adapter to connect M.2 SSD to your computer through the USB interface. 

clone m.2 ssd with only one slot

So let's summarize what you need to prepare if your computer only has an M.2 SSD port. If you use the first way, you'll need an external USB HDD; if you choose the second way, you need a USB to M.2 SSD converter and an extra USB cable.

📖You may be interested: How to Clone SSD to New SSD Without Losing | How to Replace M.2 SSD in PC

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Reliable SSD Cloning Utility - Make the Cloning Process Easier

No matter which method you choose, a reliable cloning tool is very necessary. Although Windows OS offers a built-in tool, called Backup and Restore to create a system image, you may encounter various issues while using it, like the Windows backup stuck at 97%, 57%, or 99%, failing to back up, etc. It will also take a lot of time on it.

Therefore, we recommend using professional HDD/SSD cloning software, like EaseUS Disk Copy, to help you. It is an ultimate disk cloning utility for Windows 11/10/8/7 to make the cloning process as easy as possible. Look at the information below to get know more details about EaseUS Disk Copy:

  • 🧰Faster speed & less time: EaseUS Disk Copy provides a faster cloning speed than other tools and requires less time to clone a hard drive.
  • 🔑Flexible clone source: You can use it to copy only OS or copy only the used sectors of the source disk to another SSD.
  • 📢Bootable cloned SSD: The computer can be successfully booted from the cloned SSD.
  • 🎒Multiple clone source: You can use EaseUS Disk Copy to clone disk, operating system, and partition. 
  • 🔣Migrate Windows 10/11 without reinstalling: This disk cloning software can easily migrate Windows installation from HDD to SSD or SSD to another SSD of SATA/M.2/NVMe type. This will save lots of time and money.
  • 📃Upgrade/replace a hard drive without losing data: EaseUS Disk Copy ensures a smooth upgrade from one hard drive to another as it copies files, programs, and OS as they were.

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Based on the above advantages, EaseUS Disk Copy is definitely your best choice to clone SATA/NVMe SSD. Now, let's see how to clone it step by step.

Guide to Clone M.2 SSD with Only One Slot

If you choose to use the first way, use an external USB HDD, you need to connect the USB HDD to your computer and use the EaseUS Disk Copy to clone SSD. Then, you can follow the steps below to clone your M.2 SSD. 

Prior Notice:

  • The "Sector by sector copy" asks the size of your destination disk to be at least equal to or larger than that of the source disk. Leave this feature unchecked if you wish to clone a larger hard disk to a smaller hard disk.
  • All data on the destination disk will be completely erased, so take care.

Step 1. To start copying/cloning an entire disk to another, choose this disk as the source disk under "Disk Mode" and click "Next".

select the source disk and click next

Step 2. Choose the other disk as the destination disk.

select the destination disk

Step 3. Check the disk layout of the two disks. You can manage the disk layout of the destination disk by selecting "Autofit the disk", "Copy as the source" or "Edit disk layout". 

click ok when a warning message appears
  • "Autofit the disk" makes some changes by default on the destination disk layout so that it can work at its best status.
  • "Copy as the source"does not change anything on destination disk and the layout is the same as source disk.
  • "Edit disk layout" allows you to manually resize/move partition layout on this destination disk.

Tick the "Check the option if the target is SSD" option to put your SSD in its best performance.

A message now appears, warning you that data will be lost. Please confirm this message by clicking "OK" and then click "Next".

check the diak layout

Step 4. Click "Proceed" to officially execute the task.

click proceed to officially start

When the the SSD clone finishes, replace the old drive with the new SSD, and restore the system image to the new M.2 SSD. You don't need to reinstall the Windows system again because the cloned SSD is a bootable one, and can be used as  the boot drive. 

If you choose the second method of using a USB to M.2 SSD converter, connect the adapter to your PC first, and then follow the steps above to clone M.2 SSD. when finished, install the new M.2 SSD to the computer, and boot your computer from the new SSD. 

📌Further reading: Migrate OS to Samsung M.2 NVMe SSD

Wrapping Up

That's how to clone M.2 SSD with only one slot. Hope this article is helpful to you. If you have any further questions, please real contact us. Also, if you need reliable hard drive cloning software, don't forget to try EaseUS Disk Copy!

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When cloning a hard drive with Windows 11/10/8/7 installed, we recommend you clone it to an external hard drive or connect the target disk to your computer via USB-to-SATA cable so that the disk copy program can detect and show it as unallocated space in the main interface. 

FAQ on Cloning M.2 SSD with Only One Slot

1. Does M.2 slots matter?

The M.2 slot is designed for different applications and supports various widths and lengths. So it depends on what you're using the M.2 SSD for. If you're using it for storage, then any M.2 SSD will work fine. But if you're looking to use the SSD for speed, then ensure you get an M.2 PCIe SSD.

2. How do I clone NVMe SSD to another NVMe SSD?

To clone NVMe SSD to another NVMe SSD, you can use professional disk copy software like EaseUS Disk Copy. It provides two cloning modes for you to clone this type of SSD: clone only OS or used sectors. You can choose one of them according to your needs. 

3. Can you clone an M.2 SSD to a SATA SSD?

Yes. You can clone an M.2 SSD to a SATA SSD as long as the SATA SSD is larger than the used space on your M.2 SSD. And you can use hard drive  cloning software like EaseUS Disk Copy to help you with that.

4. Can I swap M.2 SSD without reinstalling Windows?

Creating a bootable cloned disk will eliminate the hassle of reinstalling the Windows operating systems and programs if you want to save time and money. Of course, you can also clone only OS to the new M.2 SSD if you don't want to move everything from your old drive. 

EaseUS Disk Copy

EaseUS Disk Copy is a well designed and very easy-to-use HDD/SSD cloning and migration tool, a tool which should be ideal for anyone wanting to quickly and easily migrate an existing system disk to a new disk (or newly installed SSD drive) with the minimal of configuration required.

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    Larissa has rich experience in writing technical articles and is now a professional editor at EaseUS. She is good at writing articles about data recovery, disk cloning, disk partitioning, data backup, and other related knowledge. Her detailed and ultimate guides help users find effective solutions to their problems. She is fond of traveling, reading, and riding in her spare time.…
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