ettoreg
1 Copper

Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

Hello!

I'd like to replace the 500GB HDD of  my Latitude 6540. with a 250GB SDD.
 Can I do it myself or this would invalidate the warranty?

Assuming the answer is YES, I would keep as much as possible of the current configuration (OS is Windows 7 Professional) The original HDD has now three partitions:

OEM Partiion:   39 MB
RECOVERY (System, Active, Primary Partition):  15,67 GB NTFS
OS (C:) (Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, Primary Partition)

As far as I understand, Windows is installed in the 3rd partition. The RECOVERY partition should contain the factory Windows configuration for repair, and I think I don't need it in the SDD, because I'm going to create a new recovery image on the HDD at the end.

But... what about the OEM partition? I suppose it contains some Dell maintenance utilities, which I assume could be useful sometimes. How  can I install it also in the new SDD ? I don't think it would be included in the recovery image, right?

Thank you in advance.

Ettore

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9 Replies
8 Xenon

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

You can clone the existing hard drive to the SSD (most drive makers provide cloning software), but you will need a way to attach both drives to the system to do it - so you'll need an external USB drive case or a USB to SATA adapter.

The one caveat:  the recovery partition is encrypted and will be useless once the drive is cloned, so make your recovery media (use a 16G or larger USB flash drive or a set of DVDs) BEFORE you clone the existing drive.  You will need that if you ever need to recover the system - you will not be able to use the recovery partition from the cloned drive.

Once you've got the recovery media made and have swapped the drive, you can then delete the recovery partition and recover the drive space.

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ettoreg
1 Copper

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

Thank you EJN63 !
 
And yes,  of course I have a USB case to connect the SSD as external disk
But I'm not sure I understand the caveat you mention
(Srry, but I'm not so expert with this kind of operation... I've always been a simple user of Windows systems).
 
I thought I can do the following:
 
1) Connect the SDD as external disk via USB
2) Clone HDD to SSD. This step will create on SSD  the 3 partitions which are currently stored on HDD (see my prevìous post):
- OEM Partition  (no label)
- RECOVERY (no label, Dell factory Windows config)
- OS "C\"     (running Windows config)
 
3) Create a new partition on the internal HDD  (let's name it "MYRECOVERY")
4) Swap the two disks (i.e. SSD as internal disk, and the original HDD connected as external disk)
5) Boot from OS partition in SSD, which was cloned in step 2.
6) Recovery from MYRECOVERY partition stored on the external HDD.
 
I want to keep all existing partitions on HDD, just in case I need to restore this disk in the future (e.g. for warranty problems). Next I will use the remaining space for additional Recovery images and backup.
 
Do you think this would work?
 
Tank you in advance.
Ettore
 
 
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8 Xenon

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

The recovery image cannot be cloned - it will not function once it is moved to another drive.  Once you have made a recovery flash drive, the recovery image becomes redundant anyway - it can be deleted.

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ettoreg
1 Copper

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

Ok. 

So this means in step 2 I can only clone the "OEM" partition and and the "OS" partition from HDD to SSD, but the overall procedure is working.  Isn't it ?

Thx again for your patience.

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8 Xenon

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

You can clone the entire drive - that is the safest way to do it.  Then delete the recovery partition, which will no longer function.

Most of the free cloning utilities are all or nothing - you clone all of the drive.

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ettoreg
1 Copper

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

I've just cloned from the HDD to the SSD using Macrium Reflect (actually I only cloned the OEM and the OS partitions as this application seems to allow it). This operation seems completed succesfully, and the status of the two new partitions on the SSD disk is "Healty".

Then I tried booting from the OS partition on the external SSD just created in the step above. But I got an "Invalid partition table !" error... and the boot fails.

This is how the OS partitions properties appear after cloning, respectively on the internal HDD (clone source)

OS (C:)
450,06 GB NTFS
Healthy (Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, Primary Partition)

and on the external SSD (clone target)

OS (C:)
232,85 GB NTFS
Healthy (Primary Partition)

Any idea about what I can do?
Did I miss to do anything?

 

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Highlighted
8 Xenon

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

See above.  It should work - IF you clone the entire drive AND you then put the new drive in the system and boot without the original drive attached.

ettoreg
1 Copper

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

Ok, I followed your instructions and have made one step ahed : the PC succesfully booted with the new SSD drive, which currently has 3 partitions as the original HDD (OEM, RECOVERY and OS)

I tried removing the RECOVERY partition, which I can never use because it was cloned by HDD.
But... this fails as the RECOVERY partition is also the Active one, and I get the following error: 

      "Windows cannot delete the active partition on this disk"

Can I set the OS partition as Active ?
This is what I expected the system was working?
Why, also in the original HDD, RECOVERY was the active partition?
I expected the the OS partition was active, and RECOVERY would also be used (as the name states) when a RECOVERY is started.

Can you help me understanding this?

Thank you again.


 

 

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ettoreg
1 Copper

RE: Replace HDD with SDD on Latitude 6540

Next step...

I configured the OS partition as Active (instead of the RECOVERY partition) but this partition doesn't boot: despite what it seems to be, it does not contain the files needed to boot,which seems to be stored in the RECOVERY partition (I don't understand why !) .  

I found some old thread about this problem, but cannot find a solution.

Now I have 16 GB of my 256GB SSD occupied by this useless RECOVERY partition that I can never use because was cloned by another HDD. I would like to remove it... but I can't find a way to do it.

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