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 Post subject: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 22, 2015 11:32 pm 
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I'm considering getting an SSD to replace my seven-year-old desktop internal HD and I need a little education about them. Looking at TigerDirect.com, I see most are 2.5" and are listed as SATAIII. Will such a drive just swap out with my existing SATA HD? Will the existing cables for power and SATA work with the SSD? Some SSDs pictured appear to have contacts, like they plug into the mother board. Any advice/education will be much appreciated.
Gerry

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 22, 2015 11:40 pm 
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The power and SATA connections are standard size. I have swapped most of my hard drives out for SSDs. I have been buying the Intel ones and have never had a problem. Intel has software to clone the drive for you also. If you are going to get one to install into your desktop, make sure you get a mounting bracket, OEM drives do not come with one but retail boxed ones should.

There are some newer ones that actually plug into the PCIe slots on the motherboard themselves, nut they are pretty expensive.


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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 4:59 am 
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Thanks, Dave. I'm glad you mentioned the mounting bracket and Intel, because that was one that I was looking at. I'm curious about Crucial since that's such a well-known RAM manufacturer.
Gerry

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:30 am 
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Did you see the thread I recently posted on a hybrid drive, Gerry?
viewtopic.php?f=14&t=1030

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:32 pm 
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No, I haven't seen it, Patty. I'll check it out. Thanks.
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:43 pm 
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Just ordered another Intel 480 GB SSD, prices keep dropping on them.


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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 5:25 am 
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I decided to go for the Samsung 850 EVO 500GB from Amazon for $177 and free shipping. I also ordered the mounting bracket adapter for $6.99. C/Net reviews the 850 at 4 1/2 stars and others have also given it positive ratings. Now I have to plan the strategy for swapping out my eight-year old HD, which I've never done before. It should be interesting!
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 1:38 pm 
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Gerry, if the experience with your first SSD is anything like mine, you are going to love it. But my SSD came already installed, hope yours works out just as well. :tup:
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:54 pm 
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Thanks, Acadia. I'll let you know how it works out. I haven't opened my box in about a year, so I know that I'll find a lot of dust to clean out.

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 3:40 pm 
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One thing to do is to NOT use the built-in Windows Defragger on SSDs. I have turned scheduled defrags off on my system.

Looks like Samsung has an utility to keep the SSD optimized:

http://www.samsung.com/us/support/owner ... 75E500B/AM


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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:21 pm 
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Thanks for that information, Dave. I didn't know that and would never have thought to turn the Windows Defragger off. Indeed, that utility seems to fill the bill; I have downloaded it and the user manual.
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2015 6:51 am 
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Indeed, like Dave said, NEVER defrag a SSD. Many times Windows is smart enough to turn the defragger off when it sees a SSD being installed. I believe some SSD themselves will turn off the defragger, anyway, just make sure it is turned off. Also like Dave said, use the utility that comes with your SSD, I believe all companies now supply a utility to keep their SSD optimized.
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Sat Jun 27, 2015 5:47 pm 
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My Samsung SSD 850 EVO and the Sabrent mounting bracket arrived from Amazon.com yesterday, much to my surprise because I placed the order on Wednesday with free shipping, which is the slowest level. Two days was terrific, but then it came from their fulfillment center in Las Vegas, which is only a five-hour drive from my house in Ventura County, CA. I inserted it into my SATA dock, formatted it and dragged a couple of folders into it for a test -- worked well. It came with their Magician software, which does a variety of things that I have yet to explore. Perhaps defragging the SSD is one of them. Now I have to get busy plotting my plan of attack!
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 2:15 pm 
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OK, using the software that came with the SSD, I've now cloned the internal hard drive with three partitions on it that I want to swap out with the SSD, to the SSD. The first partition contains Windows 7, the other two contain picture files and video files.

Now each of these cloned partitions on the SSD contains a new drive letter. The Windows 7 partition is labeled N. When I replace my internal HD with the SSD, will my computer recognize this partition as the C drive for Windows 7, or should I remove the letter designation of N before I swap out the drives? Obviously I can't change the drive label to C because the existing internal HD has the current C drive on it.
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 2:42 pm 
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It should change as it will be the only drive. ( I did say should ). The secret to cloning a system drive is to unplug the original one the first time you boot, that way the drive letters will not get screwed up. You can always reclone it and then boot with the HD unplugged to test. That's the nice thing about cloning, the original drive is unchanged so you can always redo the clone if you have issues. If you disconnect the original HD and boot the SSD and letters aren't correct, just reclone and after you are done, reboot with just the SSD connected and the letters should be correct.


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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:11 pm 
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Thanks, Dave. I should have stated that currently my boot menu gives me the choice of Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10 Preview. The last two are on the second internal HD, so the system would boot to one of those I would assume. Therefore, I would guess that I need to upplug that HD and work only with the new SSD and the original HD as you suggest. Right?

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 4:35 pm 
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Yes anytime you clone a system drive you want to make sure that the first time booting is with that drive only. I always unplug all drives after a clone and boot with the freshly cloned drive as the only one attached, keeps the letters from being mangled.

I no longer dual(triple) boot with my internal drives. I use my external drive bay and swap out the drives that way. I have my Windows 7 as internal drives, Windows 8.1 and 10 are on their own drives that I put into the drive bay and use my BIOS boot menu to load that OS. When in 8.1 or 10 I have disabled the internal drives through the Device Manager so 8.1 and 10 never see the 7 drives. 7 never sees the external OS's because I leave the drive bay powered off except for when I have my backup dives in it, its hot swappable or I put my backup drive in then turn it on.


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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 4:49 pm 
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That plan is very interesting, something I never thought of. I will certainly consider it. My plan right now is to put Windows 7 on the new SSD and then upgrade that to the final version of 10 when available. That would leave me with just the two: 8.1 on an internal HD, 10 on the new internal SSD.

Many thanks for the excellent advice.
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Tue Jun 30, 2015 7:05 pm 
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As an added note...

After booting with just the SSD connected do not re-connect all the drives. If booting to just the SSD gives you the proper drive letters then power down and connect the drive with Win 8.1 and boot. This will pretty much insure that the Win 8.1 boot will not be broken as it will retain its proper letter. Now you can power down and re-connect the drive the SSD replaces.

This will probably go smoothly but there is a potential issue. I assume that you initially had Win 7 installed then added the other internal to dual with 8.1. This can result in the boot loader residing only on the 8.1 drive. If this is the case the SSD MAY not boot. If this does happen make sure that the SSD is connected to the same SATA port as the original drive and re-connect the 8.1 drive. The system would now see the configuration in the same way as it was before the SSD as to booting.

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 2:09 pm 
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Jay, the computer came with the two internal HDs. The one with 8.1 now had Vista before. This will be the first time I have disconnected/reconnected either internal HD.

I now see another issue with the clone: It appears to have copied only the used space from each partition, not the free space within each. The partition with my data has 165GB, but the cloned partition shows only 99.9GB. The third partition has 166GB, but the clone of it shows only 150GB. Any ideas about how to fix this? I suppose I could restore my latest backup image of those two partitions to the SSD once I get it installed and running OK in the computer.
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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 8:31 pm 
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Doing a clone is designed for drives of the same size. Wait for further input but it might be a case where you have to do this in steps.

Let's see what others have to say...

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 11:07 pm 
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I am assuming that the SSD is smaller than the Hard Drive. You may need to shrink the partition sizes on your 7 drive so that it is more proportional to the size of the SSD. Not sure about your software, but the Intel software let me manually create my partition sizes on the new drive before I cloned it. I created a 100 Meg partition for the System Reserved portion and made the rest of the SSD a single partition for my C. The software the cloned each partition into the proper locations on the SSD.


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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Wed Jul 01, 2015 11:41 pm 
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I think I can fix this issue once I get back to normal, which I'm not yet. I replaced my one HD with the SSD, and the other HD with a 2TB Seagate Barracuda that I cloned with Win 8 OS and two other data partitions. Testing each individually before installing worked as they should: The SSD booted into Win 7 and I was able to change the letters on the other two partitions to coincide with the original. The new Seagate, without the SSD plugged in, booted into Win 8.1 as it should, and the other two partitions were there and this time carried their original letter assignments. So both booted individually, but when I hook them both up now, my boot menu shows 7, 8.1 and 10 just as it did before, but I can only boot into 8.1. The other two give me problem screens, with F9 choice to boot into another OS, which is 8.1 every time I hit the key. Jay, you have recommended a boot manager in the past that has always worked for me, but darned if I can remember what it was. Is this what I need?
Gerry

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:20 am 
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You probably mean EasyBCD at
http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/easybcd.html

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 Post subject: Re: Questions About SSDs
 Post Posted: Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:35 am 
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jaylach wrote:

That's the one, Jay. Thanks a million!

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