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I have a 2009 unibody Macbook Pro 13". Last year I took out the optical drive, replaced it with the original hard drive and installed a 256GB SSD in its place. I then setup Win7 on a small (75GB) partition.

The Windows partition is now full so I bought another 256GB SSD with the intention of dedicating the whole drive to Bootcamp.

So now it looks like I have two options:

  1. Clone the Bootcamp partition to the new SSD and swap them out
  2. Run Boot Camp assistant and install a fresh Windows 7 system on the SSD.

I'm not sure if the first method will work - I worry the system will detect the hardware has changed and grumble/break if I do this. Also, Apple Disk utility can't work with NTFS format drives and there is a plethora of cloning utilities to choose from.

The problem with method 2 is that Bootcamp will only setup Windows from the CD drive installed in the bay and of course that's where my new SSD lives. I don't think my MBP can boot from USB so my original plan to create a bootable thumbdrive will almost certainly fail.

I would really appreciate your comments and suggestions.

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Your first solution should be fine. Windows may grumble about having to reactivate, though, since it sees hardware changing. There another question over at Superuser that discusses software to clone Windows drives. Just make sure that you format the new SSD with a GUID partition table before you do the cloning, though (you can do the partition table formatting in Disk Utility, or have Boot Camp Assistant do the formatting for you).

You can also temporarily swap out the old SSD with the optical drive, which is often what I end up doing.

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