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New machine, hard drive swap

676 Views 24 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  mushroomboy
I do not know where to put this, hard drive or OS section but here we are...

I have a 10 year old Dell pc that has a failed motherboard. It turns out that it would be better to build a one rather than buy a replacement motherboard.

My dilemma - I want to either move the hard drive over to the newly built computer (or if possible copy the hard drive on to a new one). I have Windows XP on this machine and I would like to know if this would work (work meaning, will Windows XP run on the new machine)

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No, it will not work. Swaping harddrives from machine to machine works if the components are pretty much identical to the once you had in your old system. You can use the HDD, but the OS won't work. Windows will detect a new environment and will most likely not boot up on it, just resulting in BSOD's.

Although, you might get lucky and it boot's up, but will most likely not be stable. Then you could salvage it with a repair install, again, if you're lucky.

But the best way, and safest way to ensure the OS to run stable for the future, is to do a clean install on the new build. And copy over the files you need to save before cleaning the HDD.

Experimented with this on other systems in years past, either from stationary build to another, or laptop to laptop. And it fails 99% of the time if there is to big a difference in the components in the build it's moved to. If the system's are withing 70% of the same components it works - but anything else than that - haven't gotten it working at all.
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