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Windows 7: Moving files to external, formatting then moving back.

22 Apr 2015   #1

windows 7 64 bit
Moving files to external, formatting then moving back.

Hi everyone.
I just bought a new SSD.
I plan to whipe my old drive and put the OS onto the SSD. On my current drive I quite a few games.

The question I have is about backing up games/moving the files.
I have steam, origin and battlenet. I tried to use steam back up before, it stopped working and now I have a file that I can not delete.

I have not found a battlenet backup, or an Origin backup.
Due to all of the games being digital, I do not want to spend a day downloading all of my games over again.

The question I have:
Is it possible to move the files (i.e. programx86 --> steamapps) onto my external, then when the clean install is done, move the files back to the same location?

Is this a viable/possible solution, or what would you recommend I do to spare my data cap/time?

Thanks all.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2015   #2

Linux Lite 3.2 x64; Windows 7, 8.1

If your system is working well the best way to do this is to take an image of the old drive and then restore it back to the SSD, or simply direct clone the old drive onto the SSD. I've had good results with Aomei Backupper to do this. If SSD space is a problem you could remove data and unused progs first, and do disk cleanup.

If the system is on its last leg, you're probably going to have to reinstall the progs onto a fresh install of Win7 on the SSD.

In either case, back up your valuable personal data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2015   #3


I'd use free Macrium to do the cloning or imaging.

But like Paul says only if your install is good. If not the the perfect install is waiting for you under the picture below.

Some games can be run from their program .exe, others must be reinstalled
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Apr 2015   #4

windows 7 64 bit

Thanks for the replies.

The issue I think I have with creating a backup and restoring is the size.
My SSD is only 250, while I am sure I have roughly around that much stuff on my current HD.

I dont mind reformatting the whole thing, it would be nice to have a clean slate again.
Just the 200+gb of video games that I do not want to have to re-download (due to room-mates using the web and my data caps.)

I might just attempt the steam backup again (that's where most of my games are), but last time it created a folder that I can not remove.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2015   #5

Linux Lite 3.2 x64; Windows 7, 8.1

PickMeApps used to be able to lift an installation. I can't vouch for it now, haven't used it in a long time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Apr 2015   #6


Try Take Ownership Shortcut

You can always browse into an install using installation disk to delete any file while not running. Copy & Paste - in Windows Recovery Console
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Apr 2015   #7

windows 7 64 bit

So the question I have, that I don't think has been answered.
Can I just copy the games folders, to an external...
format the drives
put the game folders back to where it should be (i.e. c:/games/Battlefield) and have it work again?
I have decided its not worth imaging/cloning, I want a ton of my computer erased. Just the large games that take a lot of data cap/time.

I want to copy WOW, to my external, format. Set up the drive to be C:/ still, put the folder where it should be. Would it recognize it as being installed and work, or will it cause the game to not work properly?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Apr 2015   #8

Windows 10 Pro X64

Most games have more than just the install folder. They usually have data in C:\Users\<User>\AppData as well as registry entries so cophying and restoring may not work right.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Moving files to external, formatting then moving back.

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