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install windows on external hard drive & make it bootable


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#1
RiffRaffCat75

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Hey guys, I've got an external hard drive that I need to install windows on to it and then put it into a laptop. So my question is, how do I install windows and make that drive the bootable c drive for that laptop? I know you are wondering why I don't just install windows onto the hd while it's in the laptop? Well, I'm locked out of the BiOS where some settings need to be changed to do this. It's easier to remove the hd and install windows on to it then to replace a mobo. At least that's what I've been told. Now I just need to know how to do this.
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#2
phillpower2

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Hi RiffRaffCat75
If you are locked out of the BIOS you are locked out and reinstalling an OS will not change this.
Why are you locked out of the BIOS?
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#3
RiffRaffCat75

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Well, the thing is, the BIOS is fully functional and working, I just can't get into it to change the SATA setting in Bios from ACHI to ATA so that the windows install will work correctly. So somebody told me that I could connect the HDD to another pc and install windows that way and then put the HDD back into the laptop. So I need to know how to do this and then allocated a drive letter to it. I figure this is easier then replacing the MOBO.
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#4
phillpower2

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Is this the same laptop that had password protection on the BIOS http://www.geekstogo...78#entry2093178
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#5
RiffRaffCat75

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Yeah, it has come back up again. I'm kind of like a dog with a bone. Before you ask, I'm working with a new hard drive for this same machine, so I know it's not the HDD causing windows install issues. I truly believe the issue is with that SATA BIOS setting. And since I can't get in there to change that setting, I've got to come up with a work around.
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#6
phillpower2

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If only life was so straight forward!

My first and foremost suggestion is that you to contact Dell and resolve the BIOS password issue, can I ask why you do not know the BIOS password?

What you are asking would be less problematic if you had two identical computers as Windows would install and recognise the same required drivers on first boot.

Technically speaking you could put the HDD in another computer and install an OS on it but there are other factors to consider 1: the hdd must first be formatted, partitioned and a drive letter allocated 2: you will need to install at least the chipset drivers for the laptop that you intend putting the hdd into and 3: the most important factor of all to consider is the licence for the OS itself, see below for a brief explanation of why;

Unless your OS disk is the full retail** edition you cannot use it with a new MB/PC as an OEM disk is tied to the original MB it was paired with, to use an OEM disk with a new MB is software piracy and therefore illegal.
Exceptions to the above are 1: If your MB is replaced under warranty and 2: If your MB is replaced out of warranty with an alternative type but same brand due to the original model no longer being available, an upgraded MB however will require the purchase of a new OS licence.

**Full retail disks allow you to install the OS on only one computer at a time, if however you were to sell the said computer and purchase a new one you can use the same retail disk and licence as before, the purchaser of the original machine is responsible for obtaining their own licence to install an OS on the hdd so it best to at least uninstall the OS before handing over the computer so as to avoid possible issues when re-registering the OS on a new computer.

Also be aware that you must install drivers in the correct order on the Dell to avoid system instability; http://support.dell....4&isLegacy=true
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#7
RiffRaffCat75

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Yep, if only life was so straight forward!

OK, here goes. This laptop was given to me. It has changed hands 3 or 4 times before getting to me. Somewhere down the line somebody put an illegal copy of windows 7 on it and a lot of other "trash" that needed to go. So, I reformatted the HDD and was trying to reinstall windows vista, which is what came on this machine in the first place. But then the install keeps getting stuck on the "completing installation" part of the process. The fix that I have found says that you need to change the SATA setting in the BIOS. So I try to get into the BIOS but I'm locked out. I call Dell and they can't get in either. They said the only way around this is to replace the MOBO, because I am permanently locked out. Well, I'm not interested in that route just yet. So somebody else suggested connecting the HDD to another pc and install OS that way and then put it back into the laptop, but I don't know the right way of doing this. So to sum up the issues; can't get into the BIOS and windows install gets stuck at the completing install stage. This machine has cost me nothing so far, and is pretty much a learning project. If I could get it to work, then I have a use for it, but if not, it can just be trashed or parted out.
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#8
phillpower2

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For the benefit of others who may read this topic I have included the Terms of Use regarding passwords.

BIOS or Operating System's passwords are there for the purpose related to Security and Privacy to protect the legitimate owner of a machine. While there are many locations on the Internet that might help you learn about managing passwords for a machine's BIOS or Operating System, we at G2G do not assist in what amounts to hacking past a machine's Security and Privacy safeguards.

While such requests are often legitimate, and come from users who experience exactly the kind of problem that you post, we have no way of determining legitimate vs. not legitimate, therefore we do not respond to such requests.


What type of Vista disk are you attempting to use?
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#9
RiffRaffCat75

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I understand about the password issues and why you posted that statement. That's fine and I agree. Just so that people understand that I'm not trying to do something illegal with this machine, because the password on the BIOS isn't really the issue and this machine was given to me, it's mine now. Just wanted to throw that out there.

I'm using the Windows Vista install disk that came with the machine. It's a Dell machine and the Dell disk that came with it. I also have the vista product key that came with the machine and the dell disk.
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#10
phillpower2

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As I said the password guidelines were provided for the benefit of others who may not have read the Terms of Use :thumbsup:

Try wiping the drive clean with DBAN and starting again http://www.dban.org/ is it a totally new HDD you are using?
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