A few month back we successfully replaced a toshiba laptop 2.5″ spinning hard drive with a 120GB SSD (solid state Drive). It was a simple single primary NTFS partition that clones across well with the Crucial cloning software.
The benefits were: to avoid a hard drive failure from a 6 year old drive that was turned on 24/7; less heat generated inside the laptop; much faster startup times; faster operation on a day to day basis.
The only drawbacks were a more expensive drive unit and a smaller capacity.

Yesterday we tried the same operation on another 6 year old HP laptop. This one had already had a spinning hard drive failure a few years back, had bad internal cooling fans and it sounded like a really good idea.


This drive was a little more complex. It was a dual boot windows 7/linux fedora install and the whole drive was larger than the new SSD size. So after trying the same Crucial cloning software (and failed), we made a backup image of the windows partition using Macrium Reflect, a good backup program that is proven.
After shutdown, the spinning drive came out, the SSD went in, we booted from a Macrium boot CD made earlier, and restored the windows image to the SSD. About an hour later it was done but would not boot.
That was because we did not backup the master boot record partition. Macrium would not allow backup of bits and pieces.. it was all or nothing.
So the next step was to restore the MBR. To do this we rebooted from a Windows7 install disk, chose the Repair option, then the command line option and ran the following commands:
bootrec /fixboot
and for good measure
bootrec /fixmbr
removed the cd and reboot and all is well again!

New startup time from powerup to login was 16 seconds. It was 75 seconds with the spinning drive.
On the first laptop we did this upgrade with the powerup to login time went from 60 to 30 seconds.

Responsiveness was noticeably improved for program startup, program close and computer shutdown.
A recommended upgrade for about $100.