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Windows 7: Hard disk dying

08 Jun 2013   #1
jcaswell

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 
Hard disk dying

My hard disk sounds like it is dying and I want to replace it before it does so, catastrophically. My immediate approach would be to do a system copy onto an external disk, replace the old drive with a new, boot from my boot disks, and than recover the system copy onto the new disk. Would this work, or is there a better way?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Jun 2013   #2
essenbe

Windows 7 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Pro X64/Linux Mint
 
 

If you do a system image, that would work. However you are always better doing a clean install (Clean Install Windows 7) and starting out with a new hard drive with a clean install. Also, if your current hard drive is failing and has bad or unreadable sectors, those unreadable parts will be on the system image, and will transfer to the new hard drive. A clean install is always the best way to go. If you are organized and get your drivers, install disks and other programs before you start, a clean install is not as difficult and time consuming as you may think. But, to answer your question, yes a system image can be transfered to a new disk if the new disk is the same size or larger than the original.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2013   #3
jcaswell

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

Essenbe - thanks. I am in the process of doing what you have recommended. However, I would like to do it slowly and gently, so it seems to me that I would like to keep the old HDD going for a while and boot into it if I need to get at some configurations and so on. Can someone tell me how I can set up my system to give me the option to boot onto one or the other W7 HDD - I am sure that I should be able to select the one in want at boot time
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Jun 2013   #4
AddRAM

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

You simply install windows onto 1 of your other drives, at boot you will be given a choice of which OS you want to boot into.

But you should do it right, backup your data off the failing drive, make a disk image, buy a new drive and install windows.

But if you install windows to 1 of your working drives, you won`t have to, the choice is yours.

Remember you need a retail key of windows or a COA sticker ( with a readable key ) somewhere on your pc to activate windows, and if you`re already using the oem key, you can`t use it for your new install.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2013   #5
jcaswell

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

So - do I merely add and connect the second drive into my computer and, when I boot up it will realise that I have two bootable drives and give me a choice of which one i boot to?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2013   #6
AddRAM

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

You have to install Windows 7 on the other drive.

Are you adding a new hard drive or what ? You really need to tell us exactly what you are doing and what you are trying to accomplish.

Thought you wanted to replace your failing drive and install windows on the new drive ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2013   #7
essenbe

Windows 7 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Pro X64/Linux Mint
 
 

To keep you fron dual booting, which can cause issues when you are finished, disconnect your current windows 7 drive, and install windows on the drive you want to. Then reconnect the original drive. You can set whichever one you want to boot from in bios, and use the one time boot menu to boot into the other one when you want to.

When you do the install, have only the drive you want to install windows to connected. After the install, reconnect the other drives.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2013   #8
jcaswell

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

I have bought a second drive, and clean installed W7 on that. So I have two drives with bootable windows 7 installed - one is my old one that is failing, but has all my favourite configurations one, and the other that has a clean installation of windows.

I back my data up onto an external drive, so I have my data accessible, but I would like, for a few days, to be able to boot onto the old drive as I try to re-establish the configurations (most applications will allow me to export and export, which makes life easier)

So, what I am doing at the moment is to close down, swap the drive leads from one drive to the other, and reboot. I use my external drive to move files.

So - can I connect up both bootable drives and decide at boot time what drive to boot from? Lots of tutorials about dual boot between W7 and XP, or Linux etc, but nothing about W7 and W7

Does that make it clear what I want to do? Thanks for your efforts so far
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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