2021 Tips | How to Clone HDD to M.2 SSD

author icon

Brithny updated on Feb 24, 2021 to Disk/Partition Clone | How-to Articles

M.2 SSD Cloning Problem - SSD Won't Boot

Most people are looking for effective ways to clone SSD to M.2, and most people have the boot problem after cloning. Here is the real case from Spiceworks:

"Had a Dell laptop come with a  Toshiba 128GB THNSNK128GVN8  M.2 2280 6Gb/ with Win 10. I wanted to fit in a larger SSD and cloned the SSD to another 2.5" laptop M.2 SSD 500 Gb capacity. Now when I boot up the laptop, I get a message Hard drive not detected. I went into the bios setup to see if the HDD is being detected, and still, it isn't." Source: https://community.spiceworks.com/topic/2075580-m-2-ssd-cloning-to-larger-hdd

You may encounter an unbootable problem if you are cloning an HDD or SSD in the wrong way. After cloning, you should enter BIOS to change the boot order if you have had a system clone. In this article, you are going to learn how to clone HDD to M.2 SSD easily, and the way to boot into BIOS to change the boot order.

Part 1. How to Clone HDD to M.2 SSD in Windows 10/8.1/8/7

Disk clone can help you avoid all the tedious job of reinstalling Windows and all of your applications. So, sometimes, you might be required to clone M.2 SSD to larger M.2 SSD or clone HDD to M.2 SSD for disk upgrade, system migration, data transfer, file backup, or some other purpose. Whether you are a beginner or an expert, you can efficiently perform a successful M.2 SSD or HDD clone.

All you need is EaseUS Disk Copy. It is recommended for its powerful cloning capacity and advanced & flexible cloning feature. It can help you easily clone HDD to M.2 SSD without cloned HDD won't boot issue, which you might suffer while using other disk cloning tools. Download this software to enjoy these highlights:

  Free Download

Support Windows 10/8.1/8/7/Vista/XP

Disk Copy Highlights:

Steps to clone HDD to M.2 SSD:

Activate this software, and follow these steps to clone a hard drive to M.2 SSD.


EaseUS Disk Copy

Start cloning HDD to SSD now


Get It NOW



Video Tutorial on How to Clone HDD to M.2 SSD:

To make things easy and smooth, you may follow this video as a guide. You can make it on your own:

Steps to clone HDD to 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

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

click ok when a warning message appears

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". 

check the diak layout
  • "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.

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

click proceed to officially start

Part 2. Replace the HDD with the M.2 SSD

After cloning, you might look for a way to install the M.2 SSD and boot from it. If the M.2 SSD doesn't include the operating system, simply connect it to your laptop or PC, and you can use it. If the SSD has the OS, follow the guide below and boot from it.

Here is an example of replacing the HDD with an SSD on a laptop:

Step 1. Turn off the laptop and remove the black panel.

Turn off the laptop and then disconnect both the power cable and any other connected cables - including the SSD. Unscrew the back panel and remove it to get access to your hard drive.

Step 2. Lift the old drive about 30 or 45 degrees and pull it out.

In its place, install the SSD and put the back panel on.

replace hdd with m.2 ssd

Step 3. Boot from M.2 SSD

Turn your laptop on and press F2, Esc, or F8 to enter BIOS. Then, set to boot from the SSD. You may need to disable secure boot control to see the SSD as a bootable drive. 

If the source HDD or SSD is in MBR boot mode but the cloned/migrated SSD is in GPT, it is necessary to make SSD first in the device boot order in BIOS and change it the boot mode to EFI to ensure proper startup.

If your laptop boots as usual and you see all of your programs and settings just the way they were before (except much faster), all went well.

Additional Information About M.2 SSD

An M.2 SSD is used in internally mounted storage expansion cards of a small form factor. It is designed to enable high-performance storage in thin, power-constrained devices, such as ultrabook and tablet computers. This SSD supports multiple protocols and applications such as Wi-Fi, USB, PCIe, and SATA.


  • Takes up less space and uses much less power 
  • Can read and write at much faster rates
  • Supports PCIe, SATA, USB 3.0, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi


  • 1 TB SATA SSD can cost about $100 (expensive)
  • Limited capacity (Maximum 2 TB)

If a laptop is compatible with the M.2 spec, the device's operating system should already include the required Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) drivers to install the M.2 storage card. If your laptop doesn't meet the need, give up buying this SSD. If you can fulfill the needs, enjoy the high performance of your new SSD now.


That is how to clone SSD or HDD to M.2. If you still encounter can't set SSD as a boot drive or cloned SSD won't boot problem, contact our technical support team through [email protected] to solve the problem. 


EaseUS Disk Copy

Start cloning HDD to SSD now


Get It NOW



Clone HDD to M.2 SSD FAQs

If you have other problems, you can read the following FAQs to get additional help.

How do I clone my hard drive to M.2 SSD?

To clone hard drive to M.2 SSD:

Step 1. Download, install, and run EaseUS Disk Copy on a healthy Windows computer.

Step 2. Connect your SSD to your laptop or computer. On EaseUS Disk Copy, click "Disk Mode" and select HDD that you want to clone. Click "Next" to continue.

Step 3. Select the M.2 SSD as the destination disk and click "Next" to continue. Click "OK" to confirm if the program asks to erase data on the destination disk.

Step 4. Check and edit the disk layout as Autofit the disk, Copy as the source, or Edit disk layout. Autofit the disk is recommended.

Step 5. Click "Proceed" to start the disk cloning or disk copying process now.

Which type of SSD is the best?

Best SSDs – 2.5-inch SATA:

  • Samsung 860 Evo 1TB
  • WD Blue 3D NAND 1TB
  • Kingston UV500 SSD
  • HP S700 Pro
  • Gigabyte UD Pro 512GB
  • SanDisk Ultra 3D 1TB...

Does Windows 10 have cloning software?

EaseUS Disk Copy, the best cloning software for Windows 10, which can help you clone the entire HDD to another HDD/SSD, including operating system, installed applications, and all the other data you will never want to lose.

  Free Download

Support Windows 10/8.1/8/7/Vista/XP

Was This Page Helpful?


EaseUS Disk Copy

  • Clone an old disk to a new one
  • Clone a small disk to a large one
  • Clone HDD to SSD

Video Tutorial

video icon

How to Clone HDD to SSD on Windows 10/8/7