How to install an SSD in your desktop PC
Increase the overall speed of your PC, the time it takes to boot and load programs by following our simple guide to installing a solid state drive. Having successfully helped thousands of people of all ages, backgrounds, and computer-skill levels install SSDs, we’re confident that you too, will be able to expertly install an SSD in your desktop PC. Installing an SSD requires little more than a screwdriver and your system’s owner’s manual, so let’s install an SSD in your desktop computer.
Transferring data to your new hard drive
If you are replacing your existing drive, we recommend the use of data migration (cloning) software to move all the files from your existing drive onto your new hard drive. Data migration software is available at Crucial.com.
To install an SSD in a Mac® system, the process is different – follow our Mac-specific SSD install steps here.
How to install an SSD safely
- Static electricity can damage the components in your system. To protect your system’s components from static damage during the installation process, touch any of the unpainted metal surfaces on your computer’s frame or wear an ESD wrist strap before touching or handling internal components. Either method will safely discharge static electricity that’s naturally present in your body.
- To protect your new SSD, do not touch the connectors on the drive.
- Do not open the SSD. Doing so will void your warranty.
Desktop SSD installation instructions
1. Make sure you’re working in a static-safe environment
Remove any plastic bags or papers from your work space.
2. Gather supplies
- 2.5-inch Crucial® SSD
- Your computer’s owner’s manual (which will specify the type of screwdriver you need)
3. Shut down your system
When your system has been powered off, unplug the power cable.
4. Hold down the power button for 5 seconds to discharge residual electricity
5. Open your desktop’s case
Refer to your system’s owner’s manual for how to do this.
6. Ground yourself by touching an unpainted metal surface
This is an extra safeguard that protects your drive and components from static damage during the installation process.
7. Locate the storage bay
Refer to your owner’s manual for the exact location and note the size of the bays.
Some storage bays and existing hard drives are significantly larger than a standard size SSD. If this is the case in your system, you’ll need a 2.5-inch to 3.5-inch converter to make the SSD fit snugly. Remove your old drive and disconnect any cables and brackets attached to it.
8. Plug the SSD into your system
Don’t force the connection – it should plug in easily and fit snugly.
To install the SSD as a secondary drive (not your primary or boot drive), use a SATA cable and attach one end of the cable to the SATA connector on your motherboard. Attach the other end of the SATA cable to your Crucial SSD. Then, use an available SATA power cable coming from your system’s power supply and connect the cable to your Crucial SSD. For either type of install, consult your owner’s manual for how to remove an existing drive (if necessary), and how to handle the cables.
9. Reassemble your desktop
10. Power on your computer
Your SSD is installed!
Have some fun and see how much faster your desktop boots up and apps load! You can make your SSD even faster by downloading our Crucial Storage Executive1 software and enabling the Momentum Cache feature. Click here to download Storage Executive.
1Enable the Momentum Cache feature in Storage Executive to get up to 10x faster performance, validated by testing included in the “Enhance Burst Performance on Micron and Crucial SSDs Using Momentum Cache” whitepaper.
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