Clean install SSD

Hello everyone

I will be getting an SSD tomorrow so I've been looking around a bit, but nowhere could I find what I really wanted: what I want is just to install Windows 8.1 on my SSD and then remove my 2 HDD partitions and make them 1 again, and format it so it'll be clean again. I don't really care about lost data, it's mostly Steam and Origin games anyways. I only have a Windows 8 key and not a Windows 8.1, but that shouldn't really be a problem, right? With that said, what is the best way to go about this? Install Windows 8 on my SSD, activate it, format my HDD, put together the partitions and then update everything on my SSD? I don't really know, have any of you got any experience with this?
Just one more small question, not as important, and probably not in the right forum, but still, does the cable matter for the SSD or is it all about the ports on the motherboard? Are there seperate S-ATA 2 and 3 cables?

Thanks in advance


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
SATA cables are fine with speeds up to 6gb/s so no problem concerning SATA2 or 3. You mention you have a Windows 8 key but no install disk? Did your copy of windows come with the machine?

I bought windows 8 on an internet site for students since it was very cheap.


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Oh so you have an install disk?

It was a download, so no. Is that bad? Won't I just be able to boot as normal, download the windows 8 installer, put it on the SSD and run it? By the way, I'm not sure if i have any DVD's I can use, so can you boot a daemon tools lite image?

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Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Also I don't want to pile on bad news but chances are the key you bought is also illegal. See Microsofts support page on this particular issue:

Microsoft does not distribute products keys as standalone products. If you see a listing on an auction site, online classified ad, or other online page advertising product keys for sale, it’s a good indication that the keys are likely stolen or counterfeit.


Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
You might check your system to see if you have an ESD folder. If you do, you can use it to make the bootable install media on a flash drive. It might be in the C: root directory, and might be a Hidden System file so you may have to set the Folder Options to not hide System files. If not, do some research since there were many threads about this when Windows 8 was originally released in Oct 2012, I believe.

If you do not have one, can you re-download the original Windows 8?

Can you purchase 8.1 at a reduced rate and just install that?

You are right to try to get a clean as possible install on the SSD. But if all else fails, you may be able to use software to migrate your install to the SSD.

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