Changing your storage drive once in a while – like that old hard drive you have from 10 years ago – is necessary to maintain the great state of your computer.
But, when you put on a new hard drive, especially using a solid state drive, you need to know how to install Windows 10 on an SSD without delays.
Let's start by saying that you need to have the “Create Installation Media Tool” ready to burn the operating system ISO. You also need a bootable USB flash drive or a disk where you can put Windows 10.
In this article, we’ll explain all the steps you need to follow to correctly install Windows 10 on an SSD drive.
Types of Drives for Your Windows Installation
When choosing which drive to use, you have to consider three things:
- Technology: Referring to the new features and improvements brought with the drive.
- Obsolescence time: How long it takes for the drive to become obsolete.
- Price: The money you can pay that is not out of your budget.
Among all the storage device technology available, why use an SSD to install Windows 10?
There are three types of drives that you can use to store your system, they are:
- The old HDD SATA drive.
- The new SSD.
- The newest NVME SSD.
Hard Disk Drive
The Hard Disk Drive is an old disk technology that has been around for a long time. This is the basic storage used in computers since 1956. As a non-volatile storage device, it can maintain your information safe even when it’s turned off.
This technology uses magnetic disks to store data persistently, but it’s delicate against any type of damage. Nowadays, it is used as a secondary storage device.
Solid State Disk
The SSD started to appear in 1991, and they have become a must-have in today’s computers. Thanks to its solid technology, it’s not as fragile as HDD and is x10 faster than them.
They also are smaller and lighter. Almost all laptops or desktops use SSD as a primary storage device.
NVME Solid State Disk
This is the newest storage technology that uses a PCI-E instead of a SATA connection. In comparison to the previous versions of storage, it is x4 faster than a common SSD.
They are more expensive than other storage devices but compensate for it thanks to the speed of the reading and writing processes.
Why Would You Need To Install Windows Onto a New SSD
The operating system is needed to run programs on your computer, and the only place you can store it is an internal destination disk such as the SSD.
For this article, we’re installing Windows on an SSD, which is x10 faster than the original HDD. And even though an NVME is x4 faster than the SSD, the prices are way higher.
When you start using the new solid state disk technology, you’ll see a huge difference in reading and writing speed. This is not as noticeable using the latest NVME drive technology in comparison to an SSD.
Steps Before Installing The Operating System
Now that we have clarified some basic concepts about storage, there are steps you need to take before you can install Windows 10 on your computer.
Backup Your Data From Your Old Drive
Before you can use your new SSD to install OS, you need to make sure that all the important information from your computer is safe as a backup.
This will help you to restore your OS in case something goes wrong or even migrate the OS if you don’t want to make a custom installation.
You can use a USB drive, external hard drive, or even an old HDD internal disk that you may have as a spare – you may need a SATA-to-USB adapter to use it.
Prepare An Installation Media
The best way to install Windows on your computer is using a bootable USB drive. It’s not only portable, but it doesn’t take too much to transfer the OS files into the installation USB.
You only need to download the Windows Installation Media from the official Microsoft website. Then, follow the instructions below:
- Start the Media Creation Tool.exe and wait until it charges all the information.
- Accept terms and conditions.
- Select Create Installation Media for another PC.
- Choose the language, edition, and architecture of your operating system. You can also use the recommended options.
- Select if you want to create a USB installation media or an ISO file using a DVD.
- Pick your choice and wait until the installation disk is ready.
Change your Computer’s Hardware
Now that you have created a bootable installation media, you can change your drive or install SSD as an extra drive to your computer.
Make sure your power supply has enough power cables to install it. Also, check that you have an extra SATA cable to connect it to your motherboard.
(Optional) Give a Format To Your New Drive
Sometimes before installing Windows on a new drive, you need to give it format. Otherwise, your computer won’t accept it as a boot option.
What you have to do is:
- Press the Windows key and search for “Create and format hard disk partitions” to open the Disk Management window.
- Find the correct drive and Right-click it.
- Select the Format option.
- Give a new name to the drive.
- Select Perform a quick format.
- Click OK two times.
Now that your drive has an image and space assigned, you can use it as the system partition drive.
Reading The Computer Boot Drive
The last step you need to do is to configure your computer’s boot order. This is done to change how your system boots so it can start the Windows installation with the boot device.
To do this, you only need to do the following:
- Connect the booting device.
- Restart your computer.
- Press the special BIOS key to enter “BIOS” menu.
- In the traditional BIOS, find the BIOS settings or the boot screen order.
- In the legacy BIOS boot menu, select the first boot drive so the computer can start.
- Save and exit.
Now your computer will boot from the first device, which would be the USB drive with the Windows 10 ISO files.
Short Guide For The Windows 10 Installation Process
Once you have all the preparation steps done, you need to start the installation process. Below we have developed an easy guide to making a fresh installation onto your new SSD.
Initial Windows Setup Screen
After you have the Media Creation Tool and have connected the USB flash drive to the computer, you need to restart the PC. Then, use the first boot device to start the initial Windows installation process.
Follow these detailed steps if you want to install Windows on your PC.
- Wait until a new window with the Windows logo appears. You’ll need to select language, time, currency, and keyboard layout. After that, you can select “Install Now”.
- At this point, you can insert the Windows 10 CD key or Windows 11 product key if you have one or skip it and do it later.
- Proceed to accept the license terms, which is a digital entitlement to use Windows 10 OS.
Clean Installation or Upgrade
In this section, you’re going to make a clean install of Windows 10. As such, you won’t need to worry about data loss – assuming you have made your backup earlier, as we mentioned above.
When you reach the part of the installation where you can choose the type of installation you want to proceed with, you have to:
- Choose the Custom: Install Windows Only (Advanced) option to perform a clean installation.
- Now you can choose the target SSD where you want to install Windows. If you still have another drive with old Windows, you can leave it there and choose the new one.
- If the selected disk has different partitions, like a GPT partition style, you can erase them. You can also create a single partition with more space to store all your data.
Note: If you receive error messages saying “Windows cannot be installed,” you’ll need to format your disk and try again.
- Select Next to start the installation.
The Windows setup will use all unallocated space to collect information. After that, it will start installing a fresh Windows on the target disk.
Windows 10 Installation - Configuration
The installation process will take between 15 and 20 minutes. After that, when you finish installing the OS, you can disconnect the USB, and you will have to configure your software before the desktop appears.
- Properly identify the region you want to use.
- Set up your account for personal use or as an organization.
- Confirm or replace your keyboard layout.
- Connect your machine to a WiFi network.
- Accept the complete Windows license agreement.
- Sign in using your Microsoft account.
Migrating OS - An Option When You Don’t Want To Format
There’s an alternative way that you can change your drive without having to completely format your PC and make a clean install of Windows 10. You can do it by migrating OS.
What this means is that your old OS will be transferred to your Samsung SSD – or any other drive you use – without having to worry about losing data. This is not as time-consuming task as formatting your PC.
Keep in mind that migrating your OS is different from cloning it. Once you finish the OS migration, the Windows from your old drive will be deleted along with the rest of your data. Then, it will be transferred to the new SSD drive.
Here’s how you do it:
- Find a third-party application that migrates or clones your OS from the old HDD to SSD. An example would be EaseUS Partition Master.
- Open the program and select Migrate OS to SSD.
- Select the destination disk where you want to allocate Windows.
- Wait until a pop-up similar to an error message opens. It explains that you will have to free space and delete the partition to migrate the software.
- Click proceed and wait till the process is completed
Now you have to change the boot order so you can start your computer from the new drive. Press F2/F8/F11 to open the boot mode menu and select the SSD with the data.
How To Install Windows Onto New SSD - Summary
Changing your computer’s drive into a new SSD is the best choice you can make. This new technology allows access to important data faster while also being more durable than the usual HDD.
With these steps we have mentioned above, you can move on to the next page and change your system drive. Use the best method to install Windows on your new SSD.
It doesn’t matter whether you want to move your OS or start installing Windows 10 from scratch to improve your laptop/desktop performance.
Now you have the tools necessary to do both without making mistakes that could cost you data and money.