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Windows 7: Can I swap hard drives between laptops and get them to work?

01 Dec 2014   #1
jdoherty76

Win 7 32bit
 
 
Can I swap hard drives between laptops and get them to work?

Not sure if this is the correct form or not, forgive me if I've got it wrong. My son has a Dell inspiron 1525 which is bluescreen'n quite a lot and TBH the machine is past it's best. I have a Dell Inspiron 1501 which is in very good condition. My question is: is it possible to remove his harddrive and pop it in my machine and for it to load up correctly. I tried this but it doesn't appear to boot. He has a valid copy of Win 7 prof and not sure if this can be copied over to my machine or not. the initial idea was to see if I could swap the hard drives over (without the need for a rebuild) just to give him something to get him over the hump before he has to purchase a new laptop. I think the copy of Win 7 may be tied to the laptop it resides on but not sure if this can be decoupled and transferred to my laptop. Or will I have to rebuild from scratch and re-install everything again.

any advice or assistance would be appreciated..


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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01 Dec 2014   #2
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 

You can follow these steps to Adjust Win7 to boot on new hardware with Paragon Adaptive Restore CD .

You'll need to reactivate at Control Panel>System. If the Pro copy is retail it can be moved to any other PC.

But this would only be effective if you know for sure the problem is bad hardware. Have you run full Dell Hardware Diagnostics from F12 Menu from boot by tapping the F12 key at restart? If the problem is instead a problematic Win7 install then the issues may also happen on the new hardware. I would Extract the crash information to post in our Blue Screen forum here for expert analysis, work through the Troubleshooting Steps for Windows 7.

Has the PC had a perfect Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 because the factory install is the worst possible install of Win7 one can have to begin with.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Dec 2014   #3
jdoherty76

Win 7 32bit
 
 

Thanks Greg I appreciate your prompt reply. My son's Dell hard drive is failing and to this end that's what I think is causing the bluescreen. The WDC drive is still under warranty and I'm in receipt of the new drive. I used Macrium reflect (from here from a previous issue with another machine) to dump the image and restore. For some reason the clone a drive method wouldn't work kept failing with pipe error. I'll run the Dell diagnostics you mentioned. I didn't think of this. I'll also have a look at obtaining the crash information as you discussed. Thanks for the advice it is truly appreciated...
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01 Dec 2014   #4
jdoherty76

Win 7 32bit
 
 

Hi Greg took your advice and after replacing the failing hard drive (in my son's original laptop) I ran the diagnostics and extended diagnostics and no failures of any kind. Tomorrow evening I'll check out the other links supplied. Your advice has been greatly appreciated. This forum never fails me. thanks again..
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Dec 2014   #5
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 

Now would be a good time to next try the Clean Reinstall. It gives you excellent experience and grows confidence, plus we will have your back the whole way. Over a million consumers have used it without a single complaint. They all enjoy perfect installs and rarely come back with any problems if they stick with the recommended tools and methods. This is actually better than buying a new PC in most cases in terms of the OS performance.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Dec 2014   #6
jdoherty76

Win 7 32bit
 
 

Now you've given me a dilemma Greg..give him back his old PC or use the adaptive restore to my laptop and then follow this up with a clean reinstall. The only Issue i'd have is his itunes file is on this and it's not too big at about 50GB. In an ideal world I'd like to be in a position whereby you build your machine and it works a treat. You then use some process to mirror it.. then 6 months or whatever later when you experience slowdown you just remirror it..ad infinitem etc.. the issue is also all the SW and Bloatware you gather..food for thought my man food for thought.. Is it a very time consuming process? thanks again..
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Dec 2014   #7
gregrocker
Microsoft MVP

 

It takes me about an hour to do the full reinstall. You can take as long as you want installing programs since the most important things to do are get online to do all Important and Optional Windows Updates until there are no more. During this time there will be repeated reboot requests. You can set up your browser and desktop, drag in your files while this is going on.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Dec 2014   #8
jdoherty76

Win 7 32bit
 
 

Thanks Greg I've not forgotten just time running away from me at present..
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Can I swap hard drives between laptops and get them to work?




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