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Windows 7: bought an ssd and want to install while still using hdd that has win 7

08 Oct 2010   #1

win 7 64 bit
bought an ssd and want to install while still using hdd that has win 7

I just bought an ssd and want to install win 7 on it. win 7 is already installed on another drive. I don't want to remove the other drive but can't format it. I know there must be a solution. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Forgot to mention that I want to do a clean install on the ssd.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2010   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate (x64) SP1

Hi mate..have a read of this: Moving Windows 7 Installation
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2010   #3
Bare Foot Kid
Microsoft MVP

W 7 64-bit Ultimate

Hello btblue, welcome to Seven Forums!

You can do what you wish but you can only activate Windows 7 using the same key one at a time, so you will have to activate the second install after the 120 days listed in this tutorial at the link below and remove the first install at that time.
1 activation key = 1 activated install

Activation Trial Period - Extend Up to 120 Days

The best way to do this is to disconnect the Hard Disk Drive (HDD) that the first install is on, connect the Solid State Drive (SSD) and do the install to that but don't check the "activate online" box during the install; have a look at the info below and be sure to post back with any further questions you may have and to keep us informed.

I know you don't want to dual boot, it's just a "how to" for the info.
information   Information

The easiest way to do away with boot issues between separate Operating Systems (OS) is to use the BIOS one time boot menu to select which OS to boot at system startup, each motherboard has an individual hot-key to tap during system start-up to access this menu.

If you have 2 separate Hard Disk Drives (HDD) and have one OS installed to one HDD and you want to install another OS to the second HDD, disconnect the HDD with the first OS installed on it and leave only the HDD you want to install the second OS to connected.
Just be sure not to change where the original HDD SATA cable was connected, it has to be re-connected to the exact same port to avoid boot issues.

Install the second OS to the connected HDD and when complete and the system is booting good, power down and reconnect the first HDD with the first OS on it.

This way the OSs will boot independently of each other and there will be no boot conflicts between the 2 separate OSs to have to sort later.

Then set the BIOS to boot the HDD / OS you want as default and if you want to start the other (new) OS you use the BIOS one-time boot menu to select that HDD / OS to start when the PC is started.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

08 Oct 2010   #4
Hopalong X

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit

Read though this tutorial.
Good info to add to the above postings.

SSD / HDD : Optimize for Windows Reinstallation


I just realized you did the tutorial.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2010   #5
Microsoft MVP


You'll need to unplug the old HD while installing to the new one.

After plugging the old HD back in after install you can boot it using one-time BIOS boot menu key if needed, or use it as a data or storage drive.

I would make a new partition on the old HD to move your data into and link it to the User folders on SSD install so you have a separate data drive, unless your SSD is large enough to contain User data: User Folders - Change Default Location

Once you're sure all the data is moved over to the new partition on old HD, you can delete the old Win7 partition using DISKPART Delete Partition Override command from Win7 then make a new Primary partition there to store your Win7 backup image: Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup

Is this close to what you want?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2010   #6

win 7 64 bit

First of all, thanks.
I really don't care about keeping the data on the old HD. I'm more than happy to reinstall everything. Once I install a new copy of Win 7 on the SSD all I want to do is reformat the old drive so it's clean. THe SSD is for Windows, Photoshop and Lightroom. I'm a professional photographer. The old drive, a WD Velociraptor 300 will be used for all the other programs. Will I have any problem formatting the old drive that contains Windows plus everything else?
Thanks again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2010   #7
Microsoft MVP


I would not put programs on a separate partition from Win7, as they write reg keys to the OS which integrate them.

If space is an issue, I would instead place User folders on a separate data drive which acts as a data vault and makes the backup image of OS/Programs drive more compact. In case OS becomes irreparable, you can reimage from backup your OS/Programs and data is current and in place waiting in its separate partition.

Use this opportunity to clean your old HD of code once you are sure you've got everything off of it. You can plug it in to run Diskpart from Win7 elevated CMD or run it from DVD/Repair CD: Disk - Clean and Clean All with Diskpart Command

The clean all (zeroing) command is also on the WD Data Lifeguard diagnostics/repair CD. Reinstalls are the smart time to test hardware, so consider downloading and burning to CD to run a full scan, then zero the old HD: Hard Drive Diagnostics Tools and Utilities (Storage) - TACKtech Corp.
Memtest86 - Download Page
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 bought an ssd and want to install while still using hdd that has win 7

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