EaseUS Partition Master

How Do I Upgrade to Larger Hard Drive [Safe & Efficient]

Are you looking for a safe way to upgrade your hard drive to a larger one? This article will present you with a comprehensive guide on how to upgrade to larger hard drive by using reliable software - EaseUS Partition Master.

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Updated by

Tracy King

Updated on Apr 18, 2024

Are you experiencing the available storage space in your drive getting smaller and smaller? Is your C drive almost full? If so, it is time to clean up your drive or upgrade to larger hard drive.

upgrade-to-larger-hard-drive

Since it is hard to decide which files and data can be deleted safely, replacing or adding a new hard drive seems like a better choice for further use. This article from EaseUS provides you with detailed steps to upgrade to a bigger hard drive without data loss.

Preparation Before Upgrading to Larger Hard Drive

Before you start the cloning process, there are certain things you should prepare in advance. Check the list below and make sure you have them prepared.

1. Appropriate SATA cable.

Prepare the correct SATA cable for your computer.

For a desktop computer, you need to prepare a SATA 3 cable and a power cable to install the new drive on your PC.

For a laptop, you should buy a SATA-to-USB cable if your laptop has no extra drive bay for a secondary hard drive. It can connect the new drive to your laptop via the USB port.

sata-cable

2. A larger HDD/SSD.

Choose a hard drive that has a larger storage space and fits your computer. A disk with an MBR (master boot record) partition style has a disk size limit of 2TB.

You must initialize the hard drive that is larger than 2TB as GPT (GUID partition table) if you want to make full use of the capacity. Only in UEFI mode can a GPT disk be booted. So, you may need to check if your computer is using UEFI or Legacy.

3. Professional cloning software.

In order to clone a disk easily and safely without losing any data, you need reliable disk cloning software. Here, we recommend EaseUS Partition Master Professional, a powerful tool that allows you to clone both OS and data disks.

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4. A backup of your data.

Always remember to back up your personal files. Although disk cloning will not cause you to lose your data, it is still recommended to create a backup to avoid unexpected issues before a big operation.

Share this post with your friends if they want to upgrade their hard drives as well.

 

Tutorial: Upgrade to Larger Hard Drive

EaseUS Partition Master has the ability to clone disks and partitions, resize and move partitions, burn ISO to USB/CD, etc. This powerful software will satisfy everything you need during the whole process. Now, I assume you have everything well prepared, and then it's time to upgrade your old hard drive to a larger one with the help of EaseUS Partition Master.

Clone the Old Drive to New One

The first stage is to clone the disk. Check the full guide below to learn how.

Step 1. Select the source disk.

  • Click the "Clone" from the left menu. Select the "Clone OS Disk" or "Clone Data Disk"  and click "Next".
  • Choose the source disk and click "Next".

Step 2. Select the target disk.

  • Choose the wanted HDD/SSD as your destination and click "Next" to continue.
  • Read Warning message and confirm "Yes" button.

Step 3. View the disk layout and edit the target disk partition size. 

Then click "Continue" when the program warns it will wipe out all data on the target disk. (If you have valuable data on the target disk, back up it in advance.)

You can select "Autofit the disk", "Clone as the source" or "Edit disk layout" to customize your disk layout. (Select the last one if you want to leave more space for C drive.)

Step 4. Click "Start" to start the disk cloning process.

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Boot from the Cloned Drive

If you plan to replace the old drive, turn off your computer first. Then, remove the old drive and install the new one in the same socket.

However, if you have cloned the system drive and want to keep the old drive for further use, you should change the boot drive in BIOS to boot the computer from the cloned drive. Check the simple steps below to enable the computer to boot Windows from the new hard drive.

Step 1. Restart your computer. Press "F2/F8/F11/Del" while booting up to enter the BIOS environment.

Step 2. Navigate to the boot section and modify the boot order. Set your computer to boot from the cloned drive.

change-bios-boot-order

Step 3. Save and exit. Then, restart the PC.

Now, you should be able to boot from the cloned hard drive.

After the cloning, you may want to clear your old drive. Check this article to learn how to erase all the data on a hard drive safely.

securely-erase-hard-drive

How Do I Securely Erase Hard Drive/SSD, Wipe Confidential Data? Your Reliable Guide Is Here

After you replace the hard drive with a new SSD or a larger hard drive, you may want to erase the hard drive/SSD at home securely. This is the most efficient way to keep your information and privacy safe from prying eyes. To complete the task, check this how-to instruction. Read more >>

Why the Cloned Hard Drive Won't Boot

Some users may encounter "cloned hard drive won't boot" or some other issues after upgrading to their hard drives. If you find the computer unable to boot from the cloned hard drive, check the common reasons listed below.

  • Disk partition style conflict. If the partition style of your original drive is MBR, and you have incorrectly initialized the new drive, you may encounter this problem. You can convert the disk to GPT with EaseUS Partition Master to fix this.
  • The source disk contains bad sectors. Although it is okay to clone a hard drive with bad sectors, it may still lead to unexpected potential data loss or disk corruption.
  • The motherboard doesn't support UEFI boot with the cloned GPT disk. A GPT disk demands UEFI boot mode, so it cannot be booted if your source disk is an MBR disk and your computer only supports BIOS Legacy boot mode. So, you may need to change the motherboard or convert the GPT disk to MBR.
  • Lack of the necessary drivers. In this case, you can try updating the drivers to resolve the issue. Right-click "Start" and select Device Manager. Navigate to the Disk drives and then right-click on your new drive. Then, select "Update driver".

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Conclusion

All the information you need to know about upgrading to a larger hard drive is presented above. If you have other disk or partition issues, you can always rely on EaseUS Partition Master. It makes upgrading hard drives easy and is friendly to those inexperienced users. Download it and explore more powerful features.

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FAQs on FAQs on Upgrade to Larger Hard Drive

1. Can I replace HDD with SSD without cloning?

Cloning is the recommended method for replacing old HDDs with SDDs. You can clone all your files to your new SSD. As a result, you do not need to install a new operating system on your SSD for it to function. If you do not want to use cloning, you must install a fresh copy of Windows on your new SSD drive.

2. Will I lose my Windows 10 license if I change my SSD?

Check if your Windows 10 stays the same edition before and after you upgrade your hard drive. Only if the edition remains the same can your digital license and product key be reactivated. You can check the edition on the Activation page where you checked the activation status.

3. Can you change the C drive to another drive?

Yes. Replacing your C drive with a new SSD will significantly improve the speed and performance of your computer. An SSD provides faster data access than an HDD.

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About the Author

Updated by Tracy King

Tracy became a member of the EaseUS content team in 2013. Being a technical writer for over 10 years, she is enthusiastic about sharing tips to assist readers in resolving complex issues in disk management, file transfer, PC & Mac performance optimization, etc., like an expert.

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Product Reviews

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  • I love that the changes you make with EaseUS Partition Master Free aren't immediately applied to the disks. It makes it way easier to play out what will happen after you've made all the changes. I also think the overall look and feel of EaseUS Partition Master Free makes whatever you're doing with your computer's partitions easy.

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  • Partition Master Free can Resize, Move, Merge, Migrate, and Copy disks or partitions; convert to local, change label, defragment, check and explore partition; and much more. A premium upgrade adds free tech support and the ability to resize dynamic volumes.

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  • It won't hot image your drives or align them, but since it's coupled with a partition manager, it allows you do perform many tasks at once, instead of just cloning drives. You can move partitions around, resize them, defragment, and more, along with the other tools you'd expect from a cloning tool.

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