Moving Harddrive from one computer to another

Discussion in 'Computer Memory and Hard Drives' started by DaveA57, Nov 24, 2018.

  1. DaveA57

    DaveA57 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    I have a computer that gave up the ghost. The hard drive is perfect, so I want to move it to another computer as the boot drive. I have the original win7 OS disc of that drive. I don't want to lose the data that is on the drive, so my question is: If I put that drive in the newer computer and boot from the usb drive (where I have the win7 os files ) can I setup this drive as the boot drive for this computer where it can pickup the different hardware ( motherboard etc ). I don't want to format drive as I want the data that is on the drive. I guess is this possible without too much hassle.

    Tks dave
     
  2. _Pete_

    _Pete_ Active Member

    Messages:
    497
    It is a bit of a hassle. For instance the drivers will be different for your new computer. You might be lucky but probably not which might mean that the drive will not boot. Also if it's a laptop then changing drives is not so easy because laptops are just not easy to get at the innards. A better idea is to buy a hard drive caddy of Ebay or such and then put your old hard drive into the caddy, connect that to a USB port on your new computer and transfer the files to your new computer. Then wipe the old drive AFTER ensuring that you have everything that you want off it. Copy your files baclk to that hard drive then you have a back up of your files. This is something you should have done in the first place. Backups of important files is essential so if you have a catastrophic failure of your main hard drive you don't lose all your files.

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/i.html?_...caddies.TRS0&_nkw=hard+drive+caddies&_sacat=0

    This is the Brit Ebay but you get the idea.
     
  3. DaveA57

    DaveA57 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Yeah, I do backups with my computer nightly or I should say my backup program does it for me. This is my brother's computer and I had a old one down in the back room that I put his drive into. I would like for it to boot to this drive, but like you explained this is not going to happen ( this is a desktop ) I was hoping I could boot from a USB drive and reinstall the win7 os and still keep his files in tack on the drive. Is this worth trying or the process is not that clear and simple.
    Look forward to your reply.

    Tks again.
     
  4. _Pete_

    _Pete_ Active Member

    Messages:
    497
    You wouldn't be able install the OS from that drive to a different drive. You would need the original installation media. If you have the Win 7 product number you can get an ISO of Win 7 from here:-

    https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/software-download/windows7

    This will make a bootable installation disc but you would also need to transfer the product number to the new computer. Microsoft don't particularly like you doing this as they say "the product number dies with the computer."

    I still think my original suggestion is the way to go. My assumption is that the "new" computer would have an OS already installed and if it is a brand new computer that OS would be Windows 10.
     
  5. DaveA57

    DaveA57 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Actually the new computer ( I should say other used computer ) has win7 on it also. I have the win7 os of his harddrive on a usb stick. Right now his drive is in the other computer just as a d - drive. What I wanted to do was disconnect the boot drive and let the computer boot from the usb stick ( original win7 OS that is on his drive ) and go through the motions of setting his drive as the boot drive after the windows setup is complete. I just wasn't sure if I would lose any misc files he has on there if I did it this way. I know I could just go ahead and do a complete install of the win7 OS on his drive again so it would pickup the different hardware in this used computer. I could just leave it like it is and he could put any programs he uses on the c-drive and use his old drive ( it may be newer than the C-drive one ) as file storage and keep the c:drive cleaner and just for the OS.

    I am going to check with him and see if there is anything on the drive that may be important and see what route he wants me to take. I will let you know tomorrow what he wants to do.
    Thanks again for your time in replying.

    Dave
     
  6. _Pete_

    _Pete_ Active Member

    Messages:
    497
    However you install Windows it will go on as a clean install ie it will wipe all the files and programs on the disk that you are installing to. The only other way I can think of doing it other than a clean install would be to use a free program, such as Macrium Reflect. You clone his hard drive to to a different hard drive but again drivers and things would be different. I think what you are trying to do, if I'm understanding you correctly, wouldn't work.
     
  7. johnb35

    johnb35 Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    41,318
    If his files were on a different partition on that drive then you could actually reinstall windows to his drive but you would need a new license. My suggestion if you really need the files on that drive is to get something like this.

    https://www.amazon.com/Vantec-SATA-IDE-Adapter-CB-ISA225-U3/dp/B01E7EPKUO

    This will allow you to access the files and transfer them to another computer. Saves the whole process of reinstalling windows.
     
  8. Darren

    Darren Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,817
    If you haven't already, try and just throwing the drive in and booting to it. I bet it would work. You'd have to fix drivers and what not but I'd expect it to load Windows.
     
  9. _Kyle_

    _Kyle_ Active Member

    Messages:
    902
    How much? :cool:

    ---

    But anyways, it probably would boot, to be honest. You'll need to install new drivers once it does though.


    EDIT: This post is pretty much redundant. But I'll leave it here so you can all shame me. :p
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2018
  10. _Kyle_

    _Kyle_ Active Member

    Messages:
    902
    Wow. Just realized my comment is completely redundant. :oops: Sorry about that, @Darren, lol.

    Didn't even read yours all the way through and I pretty much repeated what you said. My ignorance can suck sometimes. Lesson learned, I hope.
     
  11. Cromewell

    Cromewell Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,319
    I'll bet you however much you want I could get it to boot. :p
    It may or may not naturally. But a repair install would almost assuredly get it to. You do not lose documents this way, just installed programs and customized settings. Even when moving to very different hardware.
     
    _Kyle_ and Darren like this.
  12. DaveA57

    DaveA57 New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Thanks for all the replies above. In the end I settled on putting the drive in as a d:drive so he could access the file on the drive. ( The drive only had 8 meg left....no wonder he was having trouble ) Anyway, now he has a c drive with loads of room and he can use the d: drive for music etc ( once it gets cleaned up ). It was a old computer I had laying around, so it gets a home for another bit of use.

    In the process now of gathering components for a new kick-ass computer. May take me 6-8 months to afford a video card, oh how times have changed.

    Thanks again people for your replies.

    Dave
     

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