SSD Upgrade on my Windows Box

I have a Windows 10 box that I used for Windows development. I generally use Microsoft Remote Desktop to remote into it from my main development machine (a Mac Pro). The windows box is running a 6-core AMD FX6300, with 8 gigs of RAM and a 1TB HDD. It is dog slow, but it does the job.

I’m in the process of trying to build CEF (Chromium Embedded Framework) from source. It has been a difficult process on every platform, but I saved Windows to the last. The build instructions are involved, and it takes hours of compiling and downloads before you hit an error message, so it can take some time to get it right. So far I’ve been working on the Windows build for about 2 weeks (!!).

All of my attempts so far have failed with strange errors that even Google doesn’t know what to do with. My next strategy is to try out this docker repo set up for the CefSharp project.

The requirements for building CEF with this are staggaring:

At least 20GB of ram dedicated to this would recommend 30GB total with page file to make sure you don’t run out (older builds like 63 were 32GB with 40GB total). You can have any amount of that 20/30GB as a page file, just beware the less actual ram the much slower linking will be.

My 8gigs of RAM totally would not be up to the task.


So I went on Amazon and bought 16 gigs of RAM, to top my box up to 24 gigs, and I picked up a 1TB SSD. I have long been frustrated by how slow this computer is, and I have the same class of CPU (FX6100) running on UBUNTU and it runs lightning fast. So I’m guessing that the hard drive is the bottleneck.

Physical installation was no problem for both RAM and SSD. All I needed to do was to clone my old HDD onto the new SSD. I thought this was a formality, and surely Windows would have a built-in tool to do this like Mac and Linux do. Boy was I wrong!

Windows doesn’t seem to have a built-in way to clone a drive. You need to download a third party tool. A google search contains many suggestions for such tools, but many were out of date – pointing to software that used to be free, but now is not free.

I added “Open Source” to my search queries to try to find some open source solutions, and found a few – all of which were linux apps, which you were directed to install onto a USB flash drive to boot your computer with.

I created such a boot flash drive with Tux bootloader (which uses CloneZilla), but was unable to get my computer to boot to it. It took a while to get into the BIOS at all as none of the BIOS keys I tried seemed to work. Turned out I needed to connect my PS/2 keyboard in order to access the BIOS – USB keyboard won’t work.

Finally, after a lot of futzing around, I found AOMEI Backupper which seems to clone disks in its free version. It’s running right now as I type, and it had a pretty straight forward interface.

I still find it mind boggling that Windows doesn’t include this functionality with a built-in tool.

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