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Windows 7: Want to install Windows 7 on eSata drive

20 Jun 2010   #21


unfortunately, the other posts are correct, you can't install windows 7 to an external hdd connected via eSATA

My System SpecsSystem Spec

20 Jun 2010   #22

Windows 7 x64

well, I don't quite understand it but you folks have much more experience than me. I've gone ahead and made a partition on my internal hard drive and installed a copy there. It is working fine. I had just wanted to try the eSATA thing but its okay. Thanks for all your help and putting up with my ignorance.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Jun 2010   #23


Hey no problem, and it's only ignorance if someone offers the correct information and you don't listen..
My System SpecsSystem Spec

02 Sep 2011   #24

Win7 home premium 64 bit
Eye roll

I realize this is an old post, but you should take your own advice. OP was absolutely right, you just have to set the SATA drive first in the bios boot order.

What was that about ignorance?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Oct 2012   #25

Win7 Home Premium x64
This works!Win7 runs on eSATA drive

I am running Windows 7 on my internal drive and a backup copy of Windows 7 on an external drive (eSATA). I keep the external copy as a clean copy in case my laptop gets infected/corrupted and I need to replace the current copy of Windows 7 on my laptop. I made the external copy functional because I hate the long wait and procedure for seemingly hundreds of Windows 7 updates on a new installation. So every couple of weeks I plug in the eSATA drive, run that backup copy of Windows 7, do the updates, and then go back to using the working copy on my internal drive. I changed the boot loader on my internal drive using the free program EasyBCD so the laptop would recognize the eSATA drive as a bootable option.

Here's how I did it:

1. Opened laptop, removed current HDD & installed new/clean HDD in laptop
2. Installed Windows 7 on new HDD using my product keys
3. Removed new Windows 7 HDD from laptop, placed it in an eSATA enclosure
4. Returned old HDD to laptop
5. Booted up old HDD and installed EasyBCD
(EasyBCD - Take control of your boot loader | NeoSmart Technologies) (Free for personal, non-commercial use)
6. Externally connected eSATA drive with the new Windows 7, and made note of the drive letter assigned to the Windows partition of the eSATA drive (not the 199MB partition, but the larger partition with the actual Windows 7 operating system)
7. Ran EasyBCD to change boot loader on the internal hard drive
8. Using EasyBCD, added new entry for Windows 7 (called it "Windows 7 eSATA") and told it to find it at the drive letter assigned at #6 above.
9. Saved new entry.
10. Restarted laptop

Now at boot up I am given a menu to choose between
1. Windows 7 (internal)
2. Windows 7 (eSATA)

Option 1 is set as the default and Windows 7 (internal) will run normally. But I can choose the other option at any time. I do not need to have the Windows 7 (eSATA) drive connected unless I intend to use it.

Can you install Windows 7 to the eSATA drive while it is connected with the external connection? Answer: I have no idea, and no interest in finding out. This method worked for me with the least amount of hassle.

There you have it. Two working copies of Windows 7 assigned to the same computer, one internal, the other external.

Disclaimer: Although I see little danger in using EasyBCD to change a boot loader, you do so at your own risk.

“Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.” - Albert Einstein
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Want to install Windows 7 on eSata drive

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