How To Install An SSD In Desktop Or Laptop

All about computers have changed in the past few years and so much is still changing. There is now more emphasis on better performance and speed whether you are launching applications and carrying out other activities. Because of this everything from processor to RAM and the storage have all been developed towards this. It is because of this that SSD has become very popular among gamers and even people who need computers for usual computation purposes in place of a Hard Disk Drive while others prefer to use the two drives together.

Before anything else, it is important to realize that although the SSD is by far better than the HDD, it has some downside which includes issues of capacity and the cost implication per gigabyte. The drive does not have as much in capacity as before now, it is difficult to get a 5TB SSD. Even though they are now available, at higher terabyte, the cost is too much for the average user to bear.

Whether you want to have an SSD installed on a desktop or laptop, the process is pretty much straightforward. Here are the ways to do that:

How To Install An SSD In Desktop

Almost every PC comes with an internal bay for an additional HDD. Because most of the space available is 3.5 inches wide, you may need to get a mounting bracket that will fit your SSD which is smaller than the HDD, sitting at 2.5 inches wide.

In addition to that, you SSDs are designed with SATA data connectors found in three versions; the 1 which can transfer data at 1.5 Gbps, 2 which transfers at 3Gbps, and then the 3 which transfers at 6Gbps. The good news is that even when your PC does not come with SATA 3 support, SSD comes with backward compatibility.

Here are the steps of installing your SSD on a PC:

1. The first thing to do is to open up the side of your computer and then take off the cover. Depending on the type of PC you are using, there may be latches that you may find holding the sides. You want to free that to be able to open it and have access to the disk bay as well as the motherboard and the SATA ports.

2. After you must have gotten the mounting bracket or other bay for your SSD, place the SSD and then screw it to hold firmly.

3. Now, you can screw the mounting bracket which has the SSD to its position.

4. With that done, you will want to connect the SATA cable to the SSD. Ensure that you also connect the SATA power cable to the drive.

5. If you want to use it for a new windows installation, disconnect any other disk connected to your computer. Insert your USB stick or DVD that has the windows you want to install.

6. Boot your PC and then as it is in the process, press F12 to take you to the boot menu where you are to select the disk or USB that contains your Windows. Follow the subsequent instructions to install the Windows on your SSD.

7. Put back your Hard Disk when everything is done and then screw back the computer. Although your new windows is on the SSD, you will find all your old data and files on your hard disk.

8. You may decide now, to install your most used programs on your SSD to get better performance. You will need to specify where you want your programs to be installed. If the settings are left in the default, it will be installed automatically where your Windows is.

How To Install An SSD In Laptop

Unlike the desktop computer that allows for more than a single drive, laptops do not offer such luxury. Hence, the SSD will become your sole storage disk once you have installed it. Before you proceed, there is a need to understand the warranty of your laptop because anything you do may break the warranty.

Because you can only use a single disk on the laptop, what you may want to do even before attempting to upgrade to the SSD is to clone all the files on your HDD and have them pushed to your SSD. To do this you will need to have a data transfer software which you can either buy or download for free (which is what we suggest). You will also need to have an external USB enclosure as well as USB cables.

To clone your contents on the SSD, place the SSD into the USB external enclosure. You need to make sure you do this correctly before you tighten it. After that, connect your drive to your PC using the USB cable.

Having downloaded and installed the transfer software on your laptop, you can go ahead and launch it. Follow the instructions and screen prompts. Your drive will take a few moments before it finally connects to your computer. Next, launch the transfer the files to from your computer to your drive.

To install a solid-state drive on your laptop, follow these steps:

1. The first thing you want to do is to unplug your system from the power source and remove the battery. Find a good level surface before you start.

2. Depending on the type of laptop you are using, open the back and then take out the existing drive.

3. Remove the mounting bay and then attach your SSD drive to it.

4. Fix it back in the position of the storage drive and tighten the screws.

5. Finally, replace the battery and plug back the laptop to its power source.

See Also: SSD vs HDD For Gaming – Which One Is Better [Simple Explanation] 


Before you settle to get the SSD for your laptop, it is important to, first of all, decide on the right SSD to get because not all SSDs are the same and you might end up with one that might not work properly with your system without making changes to your BIOS.

The most common form factors of SSD are the 2.5-inch and 1.8-inch. While the 1.8 inches which are the smaller of the two are mostly found on newer laptops, the 2.5-inch is the most popular of the two. Because of this, most laptops make use of the 2.5-inch SSD than the 1.8-inch.

Finally, it doesn’t matter what SSD you want to have on either your PC or laptop, once you follow the steps above, it becomes a straightforward experience.

Tim Flaherty
Tim Flaherty
Tim is our talented senior tech writer and editor, the one who plays music on replay, drinks more coffee than beer, plays video games, and reads poetry. In between, Tim reviews products, write about computers, games, hardware, software, guides, reviews and talk tech and arts. If there is a WWIII, he thinks it could be caused by bad writing.


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