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Windows 7: can I boot from a smaller drive and use a larger one as my primary?

12 Jan 2013   #1
Goblin137

windows 7 home premium 64bit
 
 
can I boot from a smaller drive and use a larger one as my primary?

Hey guys

Got a new 2TB hard drive (f and have it installed, obviously showing up as an empty drive at the moment. Is it possible to use my old 320GB (c drive as boot only but still have the new one as the primary drive, programs install there, download there etc?
any help is appreciated!

PC is a homebuild running Win 7 64bit,
can provide specs if needed.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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12 Jan 2013   #2
bigmck

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Goblin137 View Post
Hey guys

Got a new 2TB hard drive (f and have it installed, obviously showing up as an empty drive at the moment. Is it possible to use my old 320GB (c drive as boot only but still have the new one as the primary drive, programs install there, download there etc?
any help is appreciated!

PC is a homebuild running Win 7 64bit,
can provide specs if needed.
I'm not sure what you mean by "primary drive". There is no problem with using the 320GB as your C: drive with your Win 7 and programs on it and use your 2TB for music, pictures and other data. Be sure and put your programs on the same drive as your Win 7 is on.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2013   #3
D3LL

 
 

Hi there,

I understand what you mean and yes it is possible.

You are able to use the 320GB as a drive just for Windows 7 and then use the 2TB Drive for storage.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

12 Jan 2013   #4
Goblin137

windows 7 home premium 64bit
 
 

Thanks for the responses guys, that is what I meant, I guess default is a better way of saying it than primary.

I think I have messed up somewhere here though;
I have just used Seagate DiscWizard, from their website, to copy my original drive to the new one. I was under the impression this would mean I could boot from it, and use it as my main drive, then format the older one.
However now anytime I try to use anything windows related; device manager, regedit, or if I try to right click computer and manage, I receive the same error "the specified path does not exist, check the path then try again"
This happens no matter which drive I boot from, or which ones are plugged in.

Is this something I have done wrong, I'm sure I followed the instructions properly.

Any help here would be really appreciated.

EDIT: Now I have booted and the drives have switched designation. I used the BIOS to instruct to boot from the original HDD but it has instead booted from the new one and labeled it C:
This is very confusing for me.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2013   #5
braddersz

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Hey.

You can use your 320gb for the os only then use the 2tb drove for programmes and data. You can even tweek the registry so that your user folders, (desktop, downloads, music ) etc etc. Are autokaticly stored on the bigger drive.

I'd suggest formatting the 2tb drive, then for backup sake. Copy your data from the 320gb to the empty 2tb,

Once you have a copy of the data you want to keep, re install windows on the 320gb drive?.

Then ill help you change the registery so that user folders, will be placed on the data drive.

That's if I'm correct in thinking that's what you want.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2013   #6
Goblin137

windows 7 home premium 64bit
 
 

thats exactly what I was looking for thanks!

However as I mentioned, I think in my haste I messed something up.

I edited the registry to make the default installation folder match my new drive, which was named x: so registry value HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/ SOFTWARE /Microsoft /Windows/ CurrentVersion programfilesdir is now x:/programfiles
I then cloned the drive to the new larger one and now neither drive is named is named x: so the registry value is obsolete.
I cannot run anything windows based, including regedit, so cannot set this straight.
Any ideas?

EDIT: it appears to be that i cannot run anything that requires administrator privs. it just gives the path cannot be found error. what have I done!?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2013   #7
braddersz

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

Not sure this is possible but, can you boot from installation CD, go in as if your about to repair the os but instead open command prompt. Try deleting the reg key by command, then add a new reg key, using the old path?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2013   #8
Goblin137

windows 7 home premium 64bit
 
 

I dont have the install CD. Will have to retrieve one and try. CMD prompt is something I can still use but i dont know how to edit the reg from there. Should this be started as a new thread?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2013   #9
braddersz

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
 
 

This link Here shows you how to delete and add reg key using command prompt

http://www.ghacks.net/2010/04/05/how...-command-line/

make sure you know the right path before you do it, perhaps check on another systen
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jan 2013   #10
Goblin137

windows 7 home premium 64bit
 
 

Thanks a lot braddersz, but I dont really understand :/ I get the principle of deleting the old value and adding a new one, but I'm lost when it comes to the \t \d \v commands.
I think it would be "reg delete HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\ProgramFilesDir"
then "reg add HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion /v ProgramFilesDir /t Reg_SZ /d C:/Program Files"

lol sorry to use you as a proof reader but does that seem right?
thanks
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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