Transfer old HDD to new computer

By BubbaDeJunio ยท 7 replies
Aug 31, 2008
  1. Hey all, I'm somewhat of a novice computer user and I'm lookin for a little help with a harddrive installation.

    Basically I want to transfer my harddrive from my dell vostro to a used dell latitude that i just purchased. I think i'm comfortable about the physical installation process but I'm not sure how i would save the data on the hard drive such that it transfers from the old computer to the new one. i'm told that if i put all the vital data in a folder on the c drive it'll transfer to the new computer, is this correct?

    also, would a dell hard drive be compatible across models as in this case where I'm going from a vostro -> Latitude?

    thanks for your help :)
  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Yes all the Laptop HardDrives are compatible (unless it's a very old Latitude, they were much fatter!)

    As for saving your data, you could connect the HardDrive to a PC via an adaptor (Here's one type, and here's another)
    Then just back it up through the PC's My Computer.

    Also, instead of saying "vostro -> Latitude" it's always best to quote the model number too.
  3. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +10

    The second one Kimsland suggested is junk because it has design flaws that can do you harm. There are much, much better ones at and Cyberguys. You need to be sure you have one that cannot allow the power plug to be easily reversed or you will blow either the board or the hard drive. Search for Notebook Hard Drive Adapter (2.5 to 3.5) for EIDE. But there are also a number of USB Hard drive enclosures that work very well. We like the Vantec Nextstar3 and Nextstar, Antec, and A-Power. Avoid Bytcc. We now consider the Nextstar3 as critical tools for our shop.
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Actually I use this one:
    I do agree that the 2nd one above, I threw away!

    But, looking back over the thread, it is highly likely Sata
    I don't believe in spending lots of money on adaptors (just to backup)
    ie external case and all, are not needed, just the cables and adaptor, as long as the computer can see it.
  5. BubbaDeJunio

    BubbaDeJunio TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for your help guys

    sorry about the ambiguity in my question, I would be transferring from a Vostro 1000 to a Latitude D620.

    Do you guys know, if I saved everything to a folder on the c drive and moved the HDD to the latitude, would the data safely follow drive or would I be risking losing it.
  6. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Are you talking Xp or Vista?

    Because some older computers cannot take Vista
    Wait I just looked it (thanks to model number) Yes the D620 you can get all the drivers for Vista (if needed) I found a better Video Driver Here

    Anyway, backup, usually means external Backup (ie to CD/DVD/Flash Drive etc)
    But if you do a Repair of Windows
    Microsoft's Windows XP Professional Repair Install step by step
    Microsoft's Windows XP Home Repair Install step by step
    Vista Repair
    Then you shouldn't lose any data (ie Repair not New install)

    But lets say you had a Virus/Trojan or whatever, on your computer, and then you run a Repair, and Windows doesn't start again!
    Well the data is still there, in the folder, but to access it you may need one of those Boot CD's out there. So again it is best to save externally.

    By the way the Repair is required because you are changing Computers' motherboard and CPU (actually the whole computer!) You would also need to activate again (which can cause another dilema)

    If your Vostro is OEM, that means Windows is only intended for that computer (The Vostro!) So therefore you may not be able to activate it (especially if you need to call MS) which may be the case. So definately have a think about too
  7. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    No the data will not be "erased" unless you unplug it while on maybe...

    But its not a good idea to boot of the OS of another to use an external hdd, usb linking wires, or something that can transfer only the specific files (note, usb is SSSLLOOOOOOWW!!!).

    And yes you could be violating copywrite in some way...
  8. BubbaDeJunio

    BubbaDeJunio TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hey guys

    Thanks for the tips, they were really helpful.
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