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Replace (C:) drive

#1
i am wanting to replace my slow hard drive with faster and larger hard drive. I am thinking of putting in the new hard drive with the old hard drive at the same time so i can ...

- take all data off of old drive and put it on new one
- make new drive my main and only drive

i don't want to mess up my comp in the process so some directions on how to do this correctly would be appreciated
 
#2
1. Save an image of your C: drive onto an external e-sata hard drive (or usb) by using something like Acronis True Image;

2. Turn off your PC, unplug the old drive (leave it in place since you want to keep it in later) and install the new HDD;

3. Reboot with Acronis boot CD; restore the image onto the new drive and boot to check all is okay;

4. Turn off your PC again, reconnect your old drive and reboot in BIOS where you will set the boot sequence with your new HDD as the boot drive. Save and exit. Reboot in safe mode; in safe mode delete the old partition C: which will have another drive letter by now anyway.
 
#3
Or, instead of going via a compressed image of the current system, you could do a direct disk to disk clone. That's a simpler process, and there's less to go wrong, and you don't need an extra external disk to hold the image file.

Connect the new HD as well as the old one. There are many programs which will copy everything from the old disk to the new one, such as the free Seagate DiskWizard (which only runs if you have at least one Seagate or Maxtor brand of HD connected) or Acronis TrueImage or any good partition manager such as Paragon Partition Manager or Acronis Disk Director (not Partition Magic which is incompatible with Vista).

If the new disk is bigger than the old one, you could either resize one or more of the copied partitions larger, or use the extra space for an extra partition for storing data files. Some of the programs listed above let you optionally resize a partition larger during the copying process. Otherwise you can do it afterwards.

Then you can remove the old HD (keep it unchanged until you are sure the new one is working well) and the new one should boot OK.

There is a small possibility the new one won't boot (whether you go via an image or do a direct clone). If so you can run a boot repair using the Vista DVD.
 
#4
By the way, there would be an extra complication if the old hard disk is IDE and the new one is SATA. If so, let us know and I'll add some extra instructions.
 
#5
Or, instead of going via a compressed image of the current system, you could do a direct disk to disk clone. That's a simpler process, and there's less to go wrong, and you don't need an extra external disk to hold the image file.
Agreed. Acronis TI can do that.

1. Install TI and new would be C drive.
2. Mirror original C dirve to new drive with TI.
3. Reboot upon prompt when mirroring is finished.
4. Smile.

Then you can unhook or format the old drive for what ever you like it to be.
I think some one posted that TI is $9.99 couple days ago. It is a steal; get it.

Good luck and let us know how things turn out.
 
#6
And what about simple copy? Connect the new drive,boot from BartPE CD (or something similar with file manager) and just copy everything from the old drive to new one. I don't see why it should not work...
 
#16
OMG man, of course you need something more, because you cannot copy your system while it is running! If you knew something about windows, you would know that many files are locked thus cannot be copied. And of course the system should be copied in its shut down state which can be done only if you boot from something other and not your system disk you want to copy ;)
 
#18
Pfft Whats the point in that, can't he just re-install windows and keep his personal files?
Hey people if you don't have an advice, then at least don't write :) It's about keeping registry and thus all settings. Also keeping windows search index may save weeks of hard drive crunching (this is how long it took on my system until my drive was fully indexed and finally stopped). Anyway, I will probably reinstall my system because I will change motherboard, so I guess it would be better choice then :-]