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External HD


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#1
Hobo

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I have a new external HD coming and have a couple of questions.

Q1) Can I move the contents of 'C' which includes the O/S (XP) to the new HD using the windows 'move' function ?

Q2) If the answer to the above is yes can I then reformat 'C' and install a clean XP ?

Basically what I want to do is make the reinstallation of some of the software to 'C' as easy as posssible after the reformat.

My gut feeling tells me that the mighty Microsoft will say it's a no no.

Thanks for any help/suggestions.
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#2
Neil Jones

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I would presume that the external hard disk is USB?

I have no idea at all whether Windows setup will detect, never mind install itself, on an external drive. I would have thought the answer to this would have been no.

You will be able to mirror the contents of the drive to the new one if you temporarily plug it in inside the case, do the mirror and then shift it back outside afterwards, and the theory goes that most modern systems will be able to boot from it.

You won't be able to use the Move function, your best bet is to use something like Ghost or similiar. If it was Windows 98/ME, you could do it from within Windows itself but not possible for XP.

Would it not be easier to just put the stuff you want to keep (your documents and what not) on the external drive, then wipe the current installation, put XP and your applications back then copy the data back and use the external drive for backup purposes?
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#3
gerryf

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addendum to Neil's comments

Some PCs/laptops will actually boot to an external USB drive now--even a USB thumbdrive (pretty slick when it comes time to updating bios without a floppy drive).

Also, I think Neil missed the point you were trying to preserve PROGRAMS.

Imaging (ghosting) the current drive, would enable you to restore your current OS in all it's glory, but you can't pick and chose what you want to restore program-wise after a fresh install.
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#4
gerryf

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addendum to me....
I will say, some instances, you can move programs from one OS to another, but I can tell you it is not easy.

Had to do it once or twice for a program that was no longer available and it basically amounted to copy large chunks of the windows and subdirectories, program files as well as exporting numerous registry entries. It's a trial and error process that usally fails, takes tons of time, and it is always better for stabilities sake to reinstall programs from scratch
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#5
Vaillant

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Well I know for a fact that you can do that with Linux... I installed Mandriva2006 on it a week and a half ago, set it up as a dual-boot along side my XP home...

Even though i ended up having to reformat windows cause it compromized my boot ( lol had no backup image of C: not a mistake i'll make again ) i'm sure it's possible with Windows too...

But like Neil said, Windows won't allow you to install onto a USB drive, you'd need to put it into ur computer, install windows, then put it back into the enclosure, and boot from there.
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