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Windows 7: Can you move applications from 1 drive to another?

19 Mar 2015   #1

Win 7 - 64 Bit
Can you move applications from 1 drive to another?


When I set up my 64bit Win 7 PC I placed the applications on a separate hard drive to windows. (Drive E: )

This has now run out of space and I have 2 options.

My preferred solution is to transfer the applications to a new drive, set this drive to be drive E: and use the old drive as an offline backup. However I do not know if the registry entries use the logical path names (so E:application/guff/moreguff) or the actual internal volume info (massive long number picked by windows for each drive).

Will transferring the applications to the new drive and then changing the drive letter work?

My less preferred option is to create a mount point on the current applications disk for the new drive, however I do not know if this will work or you can only create mount points in the C: drive.

I also do not know how mount points are handled by Windows Backup. If I have a mount point for the new drive on the existing applications drive will Windows Backup back up both drives, or fail at the mount point?

Advice please.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2015   #2
Microsoft MVP


I would not install Programs to any other than C. They write registry keys to Win7 that integrate them into the OS until they are properly uninstalled, so should be included in the C image.

There is really no good reason to do this, especially if trying to save space on an SSD since Programs benefit from the speed.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2015   #3

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

I mean really, how many apps are on this drive that you could run out of space ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

20 Mar 2015   #4
Layback Bear

Windows 10 Pro. 64/ version 1709 Windows 7 Pro/64

I'm thinking if we new the system specs, better advice could be given.

Abdabs here are two tutorials that will help you fill in your specs completely.

By Brink:

System Info - See Your System Specs

By Kari:

Speccy - Publish Snapshot of your System Specs
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2015   #5

Win 7 - 64 Bit


To answer in no particular order.

I have the apps on a separate drive so that I only need to restore those should the apps hard drive die, rather than the entire system. Annoyingly a sys image backs up both C: and E: and does not let me choose to just back up the C: or the E: plus registry entries - which I'm guessing would solve the need to ask the question(?).

My specs (especially the name of drive 0) should explain why I have such a full apps drive; video software is big and I also use the pc for gaming.

No idea how the specs will help, and sorry I won't download something off the internet I don't trust.

So manually I have

AMD 4 core 64 bit processor
12 gb ram
Win7 Pro
disk 0 - Frame store - 500gb
disk 1 - par 1 - Windows boot, par 2 - C: (228 gb), Par 3 - I: data (237 gb) - 500gb disk
disk 2 - par 1 - E: apps (488 gb), par 2 - 4 Linux - 1tb disk
disk 3 - currently blank - 1tb

As you can see I have a Linux install as well and dual boot to it or Win 7 via Grub.

Moving the Linux system to the new drive is a non starter as it took too much pain to get it and Windows to behave properly.

I also have a few(!) external drives for video storage and bunch of external drives for offline backups.

I did not raid the system as a the time of set-up I didn't understand it, still don't fully, and it probably would not like a dual boot system anyway(?).

Now it may be that all I need is a 3rd party backup solution in order to achive what I what to do, but don't know.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2015   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

Windows Backup and Restore has its own ideas of what partitions to include in a "system image", unlike other more flexible applications. Is that the application that "annoyingly" wanted to back up C and E?

Can you post a screen shot of Windows Disk Management?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2015   #7
Layback Bear

Windows 10 Pro. 64/ version 1709 Windows 7 Pro/64

Your system spec should be applied where we can see them on ever post. Just like the tutorial instructed.

Go to the lower left corner of this post and tick on My System Specs and you will see my system specs.
We need to see your system specs in the same fashion.

Their is a reason for this method.
That way any member wanting to help don't have to go through a lot of post looking for another members system specs.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Mar 2015   #8

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit

Folks, because long-term & successful backups/restores operations depend upon many many "thingies" within Windows and installed programs, applications, etc. -- I personally recommend against "moving" or "redirecting" or "OtherThanDefaultC-installing" anything that is installed via Windows Installer, program installer, application installer, or any other normal installer.
While one might get away with it now, if/when a serious reinstall or an old restorable backup of Windows is ever needed -- one will be able to watch grass grow faster than one will be able to reConfigure, reInstall, reMove, reDirect all that has gone on before.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Can you move applications from 1 drive to another?

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