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Windows 7: Booting Vista on an old external HD?

16 Apr 2012   #1

Windows 7 64 bit
Booting Vista on an old external HD?

Wondering if anyone can help me with this. A few weeks ago my old Lenovo computer died. I took the HD out and it worked OK in another computer. I then bought a new HP with Windows 7 64 bit. Everything fine except lazy greedy Canon do not produce drivers for my existing scanner for 64 bit, only 32 bit. I have wasted a lot of time trying other drivers, work arounds and expensive memory hogging simulation programs. Howvere, I saw a case I can put my old HD into in a shop the other day. What I am wondering now is if it is possible to do this, plug in it and then boot my old system on those occasions I need to use my scanner?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

16 Apr 2012   #2

win 7 64 RTM

hi you would be better of installing the drive in the new computer
and then reinstall vista on that drive.
you will then have a dual boot with vista and seven, and if you want the win 7 boot screen
then boot the Windows 7 64 disk and you will get the option to repair boot menu
select it and you will have dual boot vista32 Windows 7 64
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #3

Windows 7 64 bit

There is no space. My new computer is a laptop.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

16 Apr 2012   #4

Windows 7 Profesional 64 bit

You may be able to shrink the current partition and then use the extra space to install vista (This is somethign I have done before) Righ click my computer then manage and then select your main partition and select shrink. It should then allow you to shrink it but it depends how much space you are already using.

Hope that helps
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #5

Windows 7 64 bit

If at all possible I don't want to have to go through the whole install process all over again. I've got a perfectly good HD with a complete install of Vista on it exactly as I want it. Surely there is some way to boot it from the new one?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #6

Vista Ultimate X64/ Windows 7 Dual-boot

Why not DLoad and use the XP Compatibility service from MS ? ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #7

Windows 7 Profesional 64 bit

The problem is that that install was for different hardware. The vista install is not going to have the drivers for your new laptop. You can try booting from an external hard drive by using F12 but it is unlikely to work in my opinion.

You r best bet would be to reinstall and dual boot
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Apr 2012   #8
Microsoft MVP


You can try cleaning up your Vista installation to the bare minimum size you need, then SysPrep it and save a backup image to reimage to space you shrink from C: Dual Boot Installation with Windows 7 and Vista.

Once imaged onto its partition, add Vista using EasyBCD on Add OS Entry menu.

SysPrep to move HD to another computer

I would use free Macrium - Image your system or the premium Acronis cloning/imaging suite which comes free with any WD or Seagate HD in the mix.

You can try it without SysPrep but it is rare that Windows 7 will start on different hardware. To do this you need SysPrep, Acronis True Image Home with Universal Restore to do the image, or Paragon Adaptive Restore CD to boot to run PNP Adjust OS on Windows 7 installed to the new hardware.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Booting Vista on an old external HD?

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