You can't clone the (contents of) the old laptop to the new laptop. Not because it's smaller, but because it has a new Windows and won't run the old Windows.
All you can do:
1. Reinstall the applications you used on your old laptop (if they are still necessary on your new laptop)
2. Copy your data (until the 256 GB is full).
The last point is not fully true. You need empty space to run, for updates and for new data. Don't fill it for more than 220 GB.
I updated my 10-yr old laptop a couple of years ago to a 1TB SSD (I'm only using about 150G). I want to get a new laptop and get one with a 256G drive. I'd like to swap drives.
I've cloned drives before but it seems that you can only clone from a smaller drive to a bigger drive. Can I do it the other way?
Here's what I am thinking:
Drive A is the "old" 1TB SSD
Drive B is the new 256G SSD
Drive C is the 1TB transfer drive.
1. Clone Drive A to the Drive C, the transfer drive
2. Clone Drive B to Drive A
3. Clone Drive C to Drive B
Step 3 is the tricky part as I'll be cloning a 1TB drive to a 256 drive. Is there a way to do it? How about if I make a partition of less than 256, will that fake the software out?
Please help me with a way I can accomplish this.