I have Ubuntu 18.04 LTS installed on a 1000 GB HDD /dev/sda (93% free space) on my laptop:

/dev/sda1 -> 512M   - vfat        - EFI System Partition
/dev/sda2 -> 732M   - ext4        - Linux File System (
/dev/sda3 -> 930.3G - crypto_LUKS - Linux File System (empty)

I would like to use a 120 GB SSD (not yet installed) for the OS on this laptop now. The old HDD should be simply used as an additional partition for file storage afterwards; no dual boot required. Instead of having to re-install Ubuntu again on the SSD, I am looking for a way to clone my existing system installation from HDD to the new SSD.

What would be the best way to achieve this?

  • 1
    Create partitions, copy files, update boot manager. Jul 3, 2018 at 17:17
  • Is sda2 is your / filesystem? Do you need to clone sda3? Jul 4, 2018 at 20:42

1 Answer 1


option a)

  • install fresh and copy over your personal files / restore installed packages

option b)

  • save your disk encryption key from the old install
  • boot from CD/USB (I would use ubuntu install media, because there you can install all missing tools)
  • clone partition 1 and 2
  • create partion 3 new with cryptsetup/zuluCrypt using the old key
  • mount both encrypted partitions
  • clone files from sda3 to the new disk using rsync.
  • This doesn't work... It boots into the old install location Sep 29, 2018 at 22:12
  • on option b) you must fix all entrys from fstab and also crypttab and run update-grub and update-initramfs again.
    – Thomas
    Sep 9, 2020 at 6:28

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