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Windows 7: How do I get files out of hard drive if computer will not boot...

19 Mar 2012   #1

Windows 7 Pro 32
How do I get files out of hard drive if computer will not boot...

I decided to built a new custom made computer and would like to know if I can just attached the old sata hard drive to the new motherboard?

I read that I have to have the same motherboard for the hard drive to work or else it will reformat the hard drive, is this true?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2012   #2

Main - Windows 7 Pro SP1 64-Bit; 2nd - Windows Server 2008 R2

If you build a new computer and use a new hard drive, set it up as usual - but without the old hard drive with your data being installed. Once it's up and running, shut it down, attach the old hard drive, then copy your data over.

If you build the new computer and do not get a new hard drive, I would let it boot and detect all the new hardware. 95% of the time this will work and your data will be right where you left it. (The other 5% of the time leaves you in trouble.) I would recommend that you back the data up and do a clean install afterwards.

For future reference, either of these scenarios involve some risk. You are taking the chance that the sole location of your data will survive a major change in the system. Do yourself a favor and put a good backup plan in place so you never have all your eggs in one basket again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2012   #3

Windows 7 home premium 32 bit

Another idea, but you have to have dual optical drives, net work drives or USB or other external drive.
Download a linux distro (I usually use Ubuntu). Run it live, that off the install disc. Open whatever 'windows explorer' program comes with the Linux flavour - nautilus come with Ubuntu. Navigate to the directories you want to rescue. Copy to the drive I suggested above. Now you have a back up and an easy way to move some or all back to your new computer. There is no more risk to this than moving files from one drive to another. That way you still have the option of connecting the drive directly if that didn't work...which has some risks (as it sounds like you aren't doing this permanently).
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 How do I get files out of hard drive if computer will not boot...

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