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Windows 7: Win7 & Win 8 HDs. SWAP OS's across drives

17 May 2014   #1
JoesMorgue

Windows 7 Ultimate x64/Windows 8.1 Pro x64
 
 
Win7 & Win 8 HDs. SWAP OS's across drives

I have Win7 on a 120 Gig SSD.
I have Win8 on a 150 Gig HDD.

I want to swap the OS's, putting 8 on the SSD, and 7 on the HDD.

So far, I've made Ghost images of both drives, and the system reserved partitions.

I have a boot-able thumbdrive, and multiple ways to make the ghost images available [External HD, Server, large Thumbdrives] so restoring them will not be an issue.

The largest OS uese 89 Gigs, so that is not an issue, and I will redo several installs of software, but that's not important right now.

Are there ANY concerns with doing such a swap?

Suggestions to make it easier?

I'd rather not, but I can change the connections of the SATA cables if I HAD to! The BIOS is pretty advanced, so I don't expect that to be an issue.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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17 May 2014   #2
Viscon

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

As far as you made images with exact copies of drives swapping them from one to another shouldn't be a problem at all.
I made such things many times with ghost and it never failed.
However, I only ghosted MBR partitoned drives, not GPT.
If your drive(s) is(are) GPT partitioned, look here first:
Imaging an EFI/UEFI System with Windows 8 and Symantec Ghost from USB. | Symantec Connect Community

good luck
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 May 2014   #3
MilesAhead

Windows 7 32 bit
 
 

This answer may help somewhat:
windows 7 - Restoring drive image on a different partition/drive letter - Super User

I think there may be a Registry migration tool but I don't know the name of it. Basically in the answer the registry migration is done by hand. It may be possible to use ERUNT after the edits. Or just copy all the hives. Or boot the imaging tool(this assumes changing the registry would mess up the imaging tool's normal behavior) and make the image after the edits.. which I guess is the point of the answer on the page.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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17 May 2014   #4
MilesAhead

Windows 7 32 bit
 
 

Note: I have never use Ghost, but other imagers such as Macrium, EaseUS ToDo etc.. Going with Viscon is a better bet.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 May 2014   #5
JoesMorgue

Windows 7 Ultimate x64/Windows 8.1 Pro x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MilesAhead View Post
This answer may help somewhat:
windows 7 - Restoring drive image on a different partition/drive letter - Super User

I think there may be a Registry migration tool but I don't know the name of it. Basically in the answer the registry migration is done by hand. It may be possible to use ERUNT after the edits. Or just copy all the hives. Or boot the imaging tool(this assumes changing the registry would mess up the imaging tool's normal behavior) and make the image after the edits.. which I guess is the point of the answer on the page.
I intend to keep the drives LOOKING the same after, my goal is to only change which one sits on the SSD. When it's done, it should not really see a difference.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 May 2014   #6
MilesAhead

Windows 7 32 bit
 
 

Quote:
I intend to keep the drives LOOKING the same after, my goal is to only change which one sits on the SSD. When it's done, it should not really see a difference.
I don't understand. If the registry references to drive letters are edited and then the OS put on that drive letter, theoretically that should be that(ignoring for the moment stuff like ini file settings with hard wired paths.) However if there's innate support for this in the ghosting sw I'd go with that, assuming it's robust.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 May 2014   #7
Viscon

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

I think there's no need to tamper registry while ghosting OS between two separate hard drives.
To make sure partition letters are intact and proper you can do things this way.
1. ghost image from drive 1 to drive 2
2. unplug drive 1
3. boot from drive 2 only
4. system should boot fine and partitons letters should be OK too

Next do the same with ghost image from drive 2 on drive 1.
This procedure should be the safest.

However, there's a simpler way which I use.
I boot from drive 1 to the OS. While there I use ghost v11.5 32bit which I can run under Windows.
I choose then image(s) of drive 1 to load it onto drive 2.
Now I have two drives with the same OS's so what I need is to boot from drive 2 this time.
While there, again I use ghost but this time I choose image(s) of drive 2 to load it onto drive 1.
Having done that, I can boot from any drive to load one or another OS via BIOS switch or boot manager, boot loader or whatever...

BTW MilesAhead, I like your avatar. Miles Davis has been for me the greatest musician ever. I use to listen to his music a lot, even when I walk my dog out. Another one's Tom Waits...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 May 2014   #8
MilesAhead

Windows 7 32 bit
 
 

@Viscon Glad you also love Miles.

Isn't there a registry setting someplace to block the OS from seeing other drives? I used it in the past but only to block partitions on the same physical drive. I'm not sure if it will block visibility of a partition on a separate physical drive.

If there's one new Feature of W9 I'd like to see but don't expect it's getting rid of the drive letter jungle. Seems like there should have been some scheme a long time ago to use some kind of alias so that registry and other settings files can remain in tact, but the references be redirected to the correct drive. Maybe where GPT has unique IDs for the drives they could use that for an alias scheme that would work?

I mean this is a really old hassle what won't go away.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 May 2014   #9
JoesMorgue

Windows 7 Ultimate x64/Windows 8.1 Pro x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by MilesAhead View Post
@Viscon Glad you also love Miles.

Isn't there a registry setting someplace to block the OS from seeing other drives? I used it in the past but only to block partitions on the same physical drive. I'm not sure if it will block visibility of a partition on a separate physical drive.

If there's one new Feature of W9 I'd like to see but don't expect it's getting rid of the drive letter jungle. Seems like there should have been some scheme a long time ago to use some kind of alias so that registry and other settings files can remain in tact, but the references be redirected to the correct drive. Maybe where GPT has unique IDs for the drives they could use that for an alias scheme that would work?

I mean this is a really old hassle what won't go away.
My server has SEVERAL drives, and a card-reader that gives each slot it's own letter, I think I'm only A through P. 5.25, 3.5 floppies, 4 card slots, 9 physical drives, and a DVD-RW. Even with all that nightmare, I am not worried about letters, and occasionally have Virtual DVD/CD images with their own letters.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 May 2014   #10
MilesAhead

Windows 7 32 bit
 
 

Quote:
I am not worried about letters
I'm not referring o running out of letters but hard coded references to drive letters. When you move stuff it's a nightmare. Hard links can help some but it's not as simple as Linux where it only cares about the directory tree location.

Ideally there would be some sort of monitoring database and when you moved installed programs the locations would just point to the new places. Not sure exactly how to do it. But of course the backward compatibility thing discourages MS saying much about it.

My inclination would be to have an associative array where the id of the software would index to a location string. The location string itself could dereference to a unique id. If you moved the software the system would realize it when it started dereferencing the human friendly readable string/location name and the loader would get the current valid location from the database or something of that sort. Basically you would drag & drop the install folder in Explorer and click relocate instead of move when you drop it.

Or something better thought out. But it has to be possible with the fast CPUs ans SSDs these days.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Win7 & Win 8 HDs. SWAP OS's across drives




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