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Upgrade Laptop Hard Disk Drive

You may want to upgrade your Laptop's Hard Disk Drive to a higher capacity drive so that you can store more data or your Hard Disk Drive may have died and you need to replace it.

A Laptop Hard Disk Drive comes in a standard 2.5 inch form factor which is smaller than the 3.5 inch form factor of a desktop computer Hard Disk Drive. Although a 2.5 inch drive is standard for a Laptop they can vary in thickness so it is a good idea to measure your existing drive before buying a replacement.

You will need to know what type of interface your laptop uses. A recent Laptop will have a SATA connection but a much older Laptop may have an IDE (PATA) connection. Your Laptop manual may give you this information or you can take a look inside your Laptop at the Hard Disk Drive connector or the label.

You may need to consult your laptop manual to determine the highest capacity Hard Disk Drive that you can use in your Laptop.
Laptop 2.5 inch SATA Hard Disk Drive - Top view.
Laptop 2.5 inch SATA Hard Disk Drive
inside a metal case - Top view
Laptop 2.5 inch SATA Hard Disk Drive - Bottom view.
Laptop 2.5 inch SATA Hard Disk Drive
inside a metal case - Bottom view
The photos above show the top and bottom views of a 2.5 inch SATA Laptop Hard Disk Drive inside a metal case (caddy) which is fixed to the laptop with two small screws.

The location and the way the Hard Disk Drive fits will vary depending on the make and model of your Laptop. Refer to your Laptop manual for more information.

Upgrading your Laptop Hard Disk Drive
1. Be aware that upgrading a Laptop could void your warranty.

2. Back-up all of your important files.

3. Make sure the power is unplugged and remove the battery from the laptop.

4. Follow anti-static procedures, and have your tools at hand.

5. Locate the Hard Disk Drive and remove the cover. The Hard Disk Drive is usually found in a compartment underneath the laptop which is held in place with some small screws. You may need to refer to your laptop manual to locate the Hard Disk Drive on your Laptop or remove the compartments on the underside of the Laptop to try and find it.

6. Once you have located your Hard Disk Drive then you can remove it. The Hard Disk Drive may be inside a metal case (caddy) which is screwed to the Laptop by a couple of tiny screws. Once the screws have been taken out then slide it out of the connector and remove.

7. If the old Hard Disk Drive is in a caddy then the caddy must be removed and fitted to your new drive.

Hard Disk Drive fitted into Laptop:

Hard Disk Drive fitted into Laptop.

8. Put your new drive into the laptop and push it into the connector. Screw the caddy into the Laptop.

9. Replace the Hard Disk Drive compartment and screw back into place.

10. Replace the battery back into the laptop.

11. Boot your computer up to the CMOS screen. Verify that the BIOS can see your new Hard Drive.

12. You will then need to install an Operating System. Further details can be found here.

You can find out more information on how a Hard Disk Drive works in the Desktop HDD section of this website.

MENU (Laptop):
1. Laptop 1. Upgrade Memory 3. Upgrade Hard Drive
4. Upgrade SSD 5. Laptop problems