Dell Mini 9 Hardware and Upgrades Discuss Dell Mini 9 Hardware and Upgrades.

Thread Tools Display Modes
  (#1) Old
LinkRS LinkRS is offline
Junior Member
Posts: 13
Join Date: Jan 2009
Talking SSD Upgrade Question - 06-30-2009, 03:08 AM

Hi Everyone,

I spent almost two hours here today looking for the answer to my question, and came up empty, and decided to just come out and ask it. I apologize in advance if I am duplicating another post... :-)

I just ordered a 64 GB SSD from Dell for my Mini 9 (to replace the 16GB stock drive). However, I am not sure about the procedure for installing the new drive. I understand how to physically install the drive, just not sure about the logical setup. Does the stock Dell drive have some sort of hidden partition with important software, or is it just setup as a single partition? If so, how can I go about copying this partition to the new drive? From what I understand, the "recover" DVD that came with the M9, is just a Windows install disk, and not a true restore disc. Will I lose any Dell provided software by just putting in the new drive, and using this disc to partition, format, and re-install XP? Finally, would it just be a better idea to use an old 160 GB USB hard drive I have laying around to use something like Acronis to clone the stock drive, and then restore it to the new drive?

I guess an alternative would be to allow my Windows Home Server to backup the M9, and restore to the new drive, but I don't think this would duplicate any of the hidden partitions. Thanks in advance for any and all help!

Rich S.
Reply With Quote
  (#2) Old
gospeed.racer gospeed.racer is offline
Senior Member
gospeed.racer's Avatar
Posts: 383
Join Date: Jan 2009
Default 06-30-2009, 03:39 AM

I use acronis true image and it works well. You can boot the cd, use an external hard drive or flash drive to store the image to, and then recover it to the new drive.

Personally, I would (and do) just nuke it and install a good, clean, fresh copy and be done with it. I hate hidden partitions and extra "stuff"
Reply With Quote
  (#3) Old
JohnCL JohnCL is offline
JohnCL's Avatar
Posts: 46
Join Date: May 2009
Default 06-30-2009, 11:47 AM

Acronis is a great product and I use it all the time, but in your case I would start fresh. There is nothing that Dell puts on there that you cannot put back. They always install extra crap that is not needed at all. A fresh install is always better. I don't believe that there are any hidden partitions on the SSD's, there is simply not enough room.

Good luck and enjoy the new drive and extra space.
Reply With Quote
  (#4) Old
Chris2.0 Chris2.0 is offline
Junior Member
Posts: 3
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Centurion, South Africa
Default 07-01-2009, 08:10 AM

Or use CloneZilla, should also work...

I also always to a fresh install on a new PC/laptop. Normally backup the drivers 1st (just in case!) and copy My Docs to a external drive. Also use Mozbackup to transfer ALL my FF settings/plugins and passwords over to the new OS...
Reply With Quote
  (#5) Old
brookheather brookheather is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 391
Join Date: May 2009
Location: London
Default 07-01-2009, 08:54 AM

If you are reinstalling Windows XP then you should align the partition before installing XP as this will give you much better performance - there are various articles on the web about this.

I found the easiest way was to use a Windows Vista or Windows 7 RC installation DVD (you can also boot from a flash drive) and create a primary partition on the new SSD using diskpart (you run this from the recovery tools). This partition will then start at 1MB which is aligned with the 4KB block size of the SSD rather than starting at 63KB which is the XP default. You then install XP on to this new partition.

- Simon.

Dell Latitude E6220 | E6230
Reply With Quote
  (#6) Old
LinkRS LinkRS is offline
Junior Member
Posts: 13
Join Date: Jan 2009
Default 07-04-2009, 04:55 PM

Hi Everyone,

Quick update (for those interested). I recived my new 64 GB SSD on Friday (3 Jul), and spent most of the day doing the transplant from the 16 GB. The hardware install was easy, and I had no issues. Neither my stock 16GB or the new Dell 64 GB had any heat pads, so I just puleed out the old one, and put in the new one.

I attempted to allign the partition (using Windows 7 and then a Windows Vista DVD), which did not seem to make any difference in performance. After that step, I bumped into the dreaded "CdRom0" error trying to instll the Dell Win XP. So, I went to lunch. When I came back, it worked (don't know why). I then proceeded to install all updates and drivers, and discovered that I did not have any of the Dell WebCam software. Plus, I noticed that I lost the Dell diagnostics partition, which bugged me. After a google search I found the program that allowed me to recreate the diagnostic partition, however that wiped out the SSD. So, I had to install again. Once again I had the "CdRom0" problem, and this time nothing would make it go away. So, after trying various external drives, and futile troublehsooting, I did a search here, and found the fix (type D:\I386 in place of CdRom0\I386), which allowed me to install. This got me through until around midnight, so I went to bed.

This morning, I dug out my Mini 9 box, and found a CD that had the WebChat software, which I was looking for. The final piece is the Dell Video Chat software, which can be found here: Dell Video Chat - powered by SightSpeed

So now, with the exception of McAfee and the online storage links (DBox?), I have the same software load as came shipped with my mini. This was a long process, and I posted it here in case someone else attempts this, and hits the same hurdles I did.

Thanks for everyone's help!

Rich S.
Reply With Quote

64gb ssd, ssd, upgrade

« 10.1 Inch High Definition Widescreen Display (1366x768) on a mini 9 | Cheapest SSD Cards »
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Copyright © 2008-2016