Sooner or later many users find that their laptop’s hard drive is full, and they begin to wonder if it is possible to upgrade it to a larger drive for more storage space. Not only is replacing your laptop hard drive possible, it is usually quite easy to do. Here are the steps required to replace your laptop’s hard drive with a larger one.
- Find a replacement drive using an online parts locator
Before you start, you will need to find a compatible drive for your laptop with more storage space. Use an online parts locator tool to see which drives are compatible with your laptop model, as different models require different drive form factors. You will probably also want an external drive enclosure for the cloning process.
- Clone your drive or Reinstall?
The easiest way to upgrade a laptop hard drive is to clone it with cloning software. This copies all files and partitions from the original drive to the new drive and you can simply boot up the laptop and pick up where you left off. Programs such as Acronis True Image or Norton Ghost can handle the cloning process, and will also expand the partition for the larger drive, allowing you to utilize all of the extra space.
If you choose not to clone the drive, you can simply backup all your important data, install the new drive, install the operating system, then move your files onto the new drive.
- Find Instructions
The process of replacing the drive is somewhat different for each model, so it is a good idea to find specific instructions for your laptop’s model. Try searching for the term “service manual” along with your laptop’s model for instructions. You may also try a search such as “How to replace hard drive” and you laptop’s make and model.
- Reuse your old drive
If you have purchased an external enclosure for the cloning process, you can place your old hard drive in this enclosure to use it for extra storage. Once you are sure your old files are backed up, you can delete the files on this drive or reformat to regain space.