Windows 7, Cloned SSD and VSS not working

This is not my typical virtualization post but it’s something I ran into this weeking. I replaced my good old Crucial m4 128GB SSD in my home working PC with a new Samsung EVO 840 250GB SSD. The fastest way to migrate from one SSD to a Samsung SSD is to use the Samsung Data Migration tool. Only install the tool, select the source drive (independent of SSD or HDD) and select the destination drive which must be a Samsung SSD. After the cloning process is complete, shutdown the PC, remove the old SSD/HDD and start the PC again with the new SSD drive. For me this was a straight forward process.

After the reboot you maybe will also see the “System Reserved” partition in Windows Explorer. If you don’t want to see it, just remove the drive letter through computer management (compmgmt.msc).

I’m using Symantec System Recovery 2013 for my system drive backup. After I changed the SSD and started a new backup I ran into the following error message.

clonessd_02

According to this Symantec KB article it should be a problem with the “System reserved” partition. I completed the instruction mentioned in the article but it didn’t help. I read the article twice and found the information that for a VSS snapshot there must be 32MB free. After I checked a second time the “System reserved” partition I found the problem.

clonessd_01

As you can see there is only 4.52MB left. On a normal system this value is about 70-75MB. After a TreeSize check I wasn’t wiser than before because according to Treesize only 13MB was used on the partition.

To correct this I had to recreate the partition. Follow this instrcution to recreate it.

  1. Shrink System Drive (C:\) by 100 MB
  2. Format the 100 MB and give it a free drive letter
  3. Open a Command-line (CMD) with Admin rights
  4. Type this command bcdboot C:\windows /s DriveLetter (from point b), change C:\Windows if you don’t use the default install folder
  5. Mark DriveLetter as active with diskmgmt.msc
  6. Reboot
  7. Format the original 100 MB (System Reserved) and give it another free drive letter
  8. Open a Command-line (CMD) with Admin rights
  9. Type this command bcdboot C:\windows /s SecondDriveLetter (from Point 2)
  10. mark SecondDriveLetter as active with diskmgmt.msc
  11. Reboot
  12. After reboot you can remove both new DriveLetters, remove the newly created partition from point b and extend your C:\ drive with the 100MB

Atfer this procedure the “System Reserved” partition will look like this:

clonessd_03

Now that there is enough space to do a VSS snapshot my backup is working again.

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