Hard disk drive is an indispensable component in a computer, but the disk may be full or damaged after running for a period of time. Nobody likes to insert a new disk and start from scratch. It can't be better if you can clone disk in Windows 11 to migrate operating system and programs. If you use traditional mechanical disk for operating system and programs, you'd better clone Windows 11 to SSD. Because the read and write speed of SSD is much faster, your computer can be improved to a higher level without doing anything else. To clone Windows 11 to SSD or other HDD, there are many tools in the market. This article introduces how to clone Windows 11 disk partition with free tool fast and easily.
Sector to sector clone and file to file copy
To copy disk/partition in Windows 11, there are 2 methods - sector to sector and file to file copy. In most cases, there's no need to do sector to sector clone, because it is very slow. Sector is the smallest unit in a hard disk, there are tons of sectors even for a 20GB partition. If you clone 1TB Windows 11 disk, it may cost half to a whole day.
File system level copy is much faster. A file could use several to thousands of sectors, and the sectors could be nonadjacent. After clone Windows 11 disk partition with file to file copy method, all sectors in a cluster may be different. But all files are exact the same with before, you won't find any difference.
NIUBI Partition Editor uses the fast file system level copy method and it has advanced file-moving algorithm. It helps move and copy partition 30% to 300% faster than other similar tools. Besides clone disk partition in Windows 11, it has the ability to shrink, extend, move, merge, convert, defrag, wipe, hide partition, scan bad sectors, optimize file system, etc. It has free edition for Windows 11/10/8/7/Vista/XP home computer users.
How to clone disk in Windows 11 to SSD or larger hard drive
- Download NIUBI free edition, you'll see all storage devices with partition layout and other information on the main window.
- Right the front of source disk and select "Clone Disk", or click "Clone Disk Wizard" on top left.
- Select the destination disk in pop-up window. If there are partitions on the destination disk, you'll receive a selection to delete these partitions or not. Only when you select the option to delete partition, you can continue to clone.
- Edit the size and location of partitions on destination disk. Start from the last one. Drag either border of a partition, then you can shrink or extend this partition. Drag the middle of this partition, then you can move it with adjacent Unallocated space.
- Click Next and confirm in next window. Finally click Apply on top left to execute.
The source and destination disk to clone in Windows 11 computer could be SSD, any types of traditional disk, any types of hardware RAID. You can clone Windows 11 to a smaller, equal or larger disk. When cloning Windows 11 to a smaller disk, the used space on system disk should be smaller than the size of destination disk.
Watch the video how to clone disk in Windows 11 laptop/desktop:
How to copy Windows 11 partition to another disk
If you want to boot from destination disk, it doesn't work by copying single C: drive. Instead, you need to follow steps above to clone whole disk. When copying partition in Windows 11, there must be "Unallocated" space on destination disk. If there is no such space, you can make it with NIUBI. Right click a large partition on destination disk and select "Resize/Move Volume", drag either borer towards the other side in the pop-up window.
Steps to copy partition in Windows 11 laptop/desktop:
- Right click the source partition (such as D:) and select "Copy Volume".
- Select the Unallocated space in destination disk and click Next.
- (Optional) Right click original drive (D:) and select "Change Drive Letter", select any letter in the pop-up window.
- (Optional) Right click the copied partition, run "Change Drive letter" again and select D: in the pop-up window.
- Click Apply on top left to execute.
If the source partition has programs or other special files, you'd better change drive letter. Otherwise, simply ignore this step.
Besides clone disk partition in Windows 11/10/8/7/Vista/XP computer, NIUBI Partition Editor helps you do many other disk partition management operations such as shrink, extend, move, convert, defrag, hide, wipe partition, scan bad sectors, optimize file system.