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Windows 7: Adding old hard drive to new PC

10 Sep 2014   #1

windows 7
Adding old hard drive to new PC

I recently bought a new Dell XPS 8700, and it came preloaded with windows 8. I have my old hard drive from a Gateway running Windows 7. Can I install the old hard drive in the new Dell, and boot off of that older hard drive? If so, how can I do that?
Thanks so much for any assistance.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2014   #2
Anshad Edavana

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Can I install the old hard drive in the new Dell, and boot off of that older hard drive? If so, how can I do that?
Short answer to your question is "no". Your old machine and the new one are using different chipsets so Windows will refuse to boot ( you may receive a BSOD or black screen ). While there are ways to overcomes this, i don't recommend it because ;

1. The Windows 7 license is tied to your Gateway machine and it is not transferable. You will need to purchase a new Windows 7 license and reactivate the OS.

2. Usually Gateway machines will be preloaded with drivers and apps designed for that particular machine.

If you want to get rid of Windows 8 from Dell and install 7, i would recommend a clean install. If the Dell is came with "Win 8 Pro", you can legally downgrade it to 'Windows 7 Pro" without paying a single penny.

Understanding downgrade rights

Downgrade rights details

If the system came with "Win 8 Core" edition, you are not eligible for free downgrade. You should purchase a retail edition of "Windows 7" and install it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Sep 2014   #3


As the new Win8 PC will have Secure Boot and a UEFI BIOS then you'll need to boot into BIOS setup to disable Secure Boot and, if the old HD was not installed in UEFI mode, enable Compatibility (CSM), Legacy BIOS and Legacy Boot.

Then Make Windows 7 bootable after motherboard swap .
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 Adding old hard drive to new PC

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