ya "since monterey inclusive" and I use CC Cloner 5.x , tho i am pretty sure ccc6 is fine too.
Thanks very much again for the help, things have so far gone pretty well with the new external $80 Crucial X8 SSD as boot drive. My blackmagicdesign read/write tests are 10X what they were, pic attached, old tests were mid 80's. Performance, boot time, even internet speed tests consistently way up (didnt realize the drive was needed?). The process only gave me the option to install Ventura (instead of the Monterey I was going to opt for), and it seemed chancy but so far so good, the X8 is now boot drive running Ventura 13.0.1. I did use the option of copying data over from Hd to SSD, (all but sys info). Maybe need to clean stuff up now tho, as I have 2 copies of tons of applications, docs, etc., one on each drive. Though most applications running fine from X8 I might need to tweak or do a few reinstalls. And some complete file pathnames for previously existing files might refer to the old HD, which could give me a weird hybrid situation, if that makes sense (application running on X8 but using a file resident on the HDD....problematic? Guess I'll sort that out as I go.
Outstanding questions (I hope they make sense!):
1. In your opinion, should I be running applications and using/accessing files as much as possible from the X8 alone? If so, is it better to delete the orig copies on the HDD or leave them untouched in case of, say, either needing to boot from that drive for some heretofore unknown reason or - just finding it easier to use them where they exist, on the HDD? (Hybrid scenario mentioned above).
2. Though you can see both drives in Disk Utility(pic attached), I can only see the X8 on my desktop, and if I want to do any of said cleanup I clearly need to get to the orig internal HD.
LMK thoughts, thx much. Best $80 I ever spent on tech gear. (Knock wood!!)