Windows PC SSD Upgrade 硬碟升級

I have a 6 years old desktop Windows PC in my home that is mainly used by my wife. However, as my little boy is getting older and needed to use the computer as well, it became quite inconvenient to have them sitting in front of the desktop. I ended up buying notebook computers for them subsequently.

Despite that desktop PC is a little bit old, it still got the works perfectly done if just for daily home use or web surfing. The only downside is the slow PC startup time and that’s why I decided to replace the hard disk with a SSD.

家中一台已購置六年多的桌面 Windows PC 主要是給太太使用,但隨著兒子長大並開始接觸電腦,要他們安坐書枱前便有點不太方便,於是便轉用了筆記簿電腦。

雖然這台電腦有點舊,但如只用作日常的資料處理及上網,它還是升任有餘。唯一不足處是開機時間稍長,最近便決定為它的硬碟升級至 SSD。

I have a 6 years old desktop Windows PC in my home that is mainly used by my wife. However, as my little boy is getting older and needed to use the computer as well, it became quite inconvenient to have them sitting in front of the desktop. I ended up buying notebook computers for them subsequently.

Despite that desktop PC is a little bit old, it still got the works perfectly done if just for daily home use or web surfing. The only downside is the slow PC startup time and that’s why I decided to replace the hard disk with a SSD.

家中一台已購置六年多的桌面 Windows PC 主要是給太太使用,但隨著兒子長大並開始接觸電腦,要他們安坐書枱前便有點不太方便,於是便轉用了筆記簿電腦。

雖然這台電腦有點舊,但如只用作日常的資料處理及上網,它還是升任有餘。唯一不足處是開機時間稍長,最近便決定為它的硬碟升級至 SSD。

My desktop Windows 10 PC was built using an Intel NUC (Next Unit of Computing) mini-computer with a 4 x 4 inches footprint. The model I’m using is D34010UWYKH and comes with the 4th generation Intel Core i3-4010U processor, 8 GB RAM and 1 TB hard disk.

當年購買的是一台 Intel NUC (Next Unit of Computing) 迷你電腦,在一個 4 吋 x 4 吋的平面面積內有齊完整的電腦功能,亦不會佔用太多的桌面空間。我選擇的型號是配備第四代 Intel Core i3-4010U 處理器的 D34010UWYKH,加配 8 GB RAM 及 1 TB 硬碟。

The NUC comes with a mSATA adapter slot. By installing a mSATA SSD board and cloning the original hard disk contents onto it, the upgrade work is done without re-installation of the Windows 10 operating system as well as all the other application programs.

NUC 內建一個 mSATA 插座,只需安裝一塊 mSATA SSD,再把現行儲存在硬碟上的內容抄至 SSD 上即可完成升級,毋需重新安裝 Windows 10 系統及其他相關軟件。

My NUC is a very old model and it does not support the latest generation SSD like the m.2 specification. As it is quite difficult to source these old mSATA SSD here in Hong Kong, I finally got a 256GB SSD from Amazon for just HKD 346 including shipping charges.

由於這部 NUC 是上幾代的產品,它未能支援較新的 SSD 如 m.2 系列。而這類舊款 mSATA SSD 在香港的電腦商場亦較難找到,我最後在 Amazon 訂購了一塊 256 GB mSATA SSD,連運費約 HKD 348。


SSD Installation 安裝

The installation was pretty straight forward. Used a screwdriver to remove the bottom cover.

整個安裝過程非常簡單,先把底蓋鬆開。

The mSATA adapter slot (the upper slot) would be shown after removing the hard disk.

移除硬碟後便會見到 mSATA 插座 (上面的一個)。

Inserted the mSATA SSD and fastened the screw on the upper left corner of the board.

插入 mSATA SSD 並收緊固定鏍絲。

Put the hard disk back into the case and tighten the bottom cover.

Powered on the NUC and started the Windows 10 operating system. Run the Disk Management utility to verify the status of the newly installed SSD (Disk 1).

放回硬碟及收緊底蓋。

重新起動 Windows 10 系統及進入 Disk Management 查看新裝的 SSD (Disk 1)。


Cloning of the Hard Disk 複製硬碟內容

Upon installation of the SSD into the NUC, one needed to duplicate the contents of the hard disk to the SSD. This required a Disk Cloning software to complete the task.

The one I chose was Macrium Reflect that is equipped with extremely powerful product features and comes with a free edition. Feel free to click here to download the Home Free Edition.

下一步要把原先硬碟內容 (所有系統軟件及其他資料) 複製至 SSD,而這個步驟就需要一些 Disk Cloning 軟件幫忙了。

我用的是 Macrium Reflect,主要是它功能強大,而且有免費版本。大家可按這𥚃下軟它的 Home Free Edition

Run the Macrium Reflect software to examine the original hard disk (Disk 1) and the SSD (Disk 2).

執行 Macrium Reflect 查看原來的硬碟 (Disk 1) 及 SSD (Disk 2)。

My original 1 TB hard disk was configured into two logical drives. Drive C: was reserved for the operating system and other application programs while Drive D: was for storage of data.

With Reflect, the following partitions residing on the hard disk would be shown:

我的 1 TB 硬碟是劃分成兩隻 Logical Drives,Drive C: (系統與其他應用軟件) 及 Drive D: (資料)。

Reflect 會顯示硬碟有以下數個 Partitions:

100 MB EFI System Partition
128 MB Reserved Partition
409 GB Drive C:
517 MB Recovery Partition

521 GB Drive D:

As mine was a 256 GB SSD, I needed to reduce the size of the new Drive C: in order to fit all the four partitions onto the SSD.

Selected the first four partitions (except the one for Drive D:). Clicked on “Copy selected partitions“.

由於 SSD 容量只有 256 GB,複製時需要修改新的 Drive C:的容量,以客納前四個 partitions。

先來揀選這四個 partitions (Drive D: 除外),再按 “Copy selected partitions“。

The system responded with “Not all copied. Insufficient space.“. Clicked “OK" to continue.

系統回應 “Not all copied. Insufficient space.“, 示意目標 Drive 容量不足,按 “OK"。

Amended the size of the third partition (the new Drive C:) and leave sufficient space for the Recovery Partition (517 MB) as well.

I originally reserved 1.5 GB free space as I expected there would still be around 1 GB available after setting up the Recovery Partition. However, it turned out that Reflect failed to complete the cloning operation.

修改第三個 partition (即稍後的新 Drive C:) 的容量,亦要預留空間給 Recovery Partition (517 MB)。

原先只預留 1.5 GB 空間,因估計扣除 Recovery Partition 後尚有約 1 GB 剩餘,但當以此分配來複製,Reflect 軟件最終卻無法順利完成運作。

I finally reserved 2 GB free space in order to successfully complete the cloning.

Probably one has to make several attempts in order to arrive at the optimal partition assignment.

最後改留 2 GB 空間才能順利完成。

相信在不同的 Partition size 下,大家可能要嘗試尋找最佳的劃分配置。

The total copy time took around 75 minutes. Reserved a much longer lead time if the original hard disk capacity was much larger.

整個複製需時約75分鐘,如原先硬碟容量更大的話,所需時間將會更長。

Finally, run the Reflect program to verify the copy operation.

最後再利用 Reflect 來核實複製成果。


System Reconfiguration / System Verification 更改設定 / 系統測試

Restarted Windows PC and entered the BIOS configuration screen. Changed the Boot Order to have the SSD (Dogfish SSD) as the first device.

重新起動 Windows PC 並進入 BIOS 更改 “起動次序 (Boot Order)“,新的 SSD (Dogfish SSD) 應排在最前。

Started up Windows 10 and ran the Disk Management utility to confirm the disk assignment. Drive C: should be assigned to the SSD while Drive E: would then reside on the original hard disk.

載入 Windows 10,利用 Disk Management 工具查看系統硬碟配置。Drive C: 應該被配置在 SSD 上,而舊硬碟會改為 Drive E:。

For my original hard disk based PC, the time between BIOS loading and Windows startup took around 15.3 seconds.

在原先的硬碟,載入整個 Windows 10 大約需時 15.3 秒。

The corresponding elapse time after SSD upgrade was shortened to 8.8 second.

升級至 SSD 後,相對應時間則縮短至 8.8 秒。

There were not many programs installed on my Windows 10 PC. In case you have more programs installed and needed to be activated during startup, the boot up time improvement will be much significant.

我的 Windows 10 電腦只裝了少量軟件,假如你的電腦有大量軟件需要在起動時載入,起動時間上的改善將會更大。


Performance Gain 効能表現

Let’s take a look at the improvement in disk Input/Output performance. The testing tool I’m using is the WinSAT (Windows System Assessment Tool) that came with the Windows 10 operating system.

Each benchmark test would be repeated 10 times internally before generating the average performance statistics. The command and the corresponding options were:

接着來看看在 Input/Output 性能上的差異。這裏我會使用隨 Windows 10 系統附上的 WinSAT (Windows System Assessment Tool) 在硬碟及 SSD 上作測試。

每個測試會重複 10 次以得出一個平均值,用上的指令及參數如下:

winsat disk -count 10 -drive <drive letter>

<drive letter> = C (SSD),E (Original hard disk)

For my original 1 TB hard disk, the disk performance was as below:

原本的 1 TB 硬碟得出以下結果:

Similarly, the 256 GB SSD delivered the following disk performance.

同樣,256 GB SSD 的表現則為:

In layman terms, the new SSD outperforms the original hard disk setup by 3.5 / 3 times for 64 KB sequential read / write operations respectively. For 16 KB random read, this is roughly a 228 times improvement.

So for as little as HKD 348, this extra investment is definitely well spent.

簡單來說,SSD 相比硬碟在 64 KB 順序讀入 / 寫出 的表現約為 3.53 倍,而在 16 KB 隨機讀入 則為 228 倍。

以 348 港元換取這樣的優異表現,這個投資算是值得吧!


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