Migrating SSD with windows installation to a new laptop

ebonarm

Estimable
Nov 10, 2015
8
0
4,510
0
Hello all,
I just got a new laptop that came with a HDD and would like to swap it out with the SSD from my old laptop and would prefer not to do a new Windows installation.

So basically, is it possible to simply swap the storage devices between the laptops and how would one go about handling the driver issues that are bound to popup with the process.

Any ideas, workarounds or advice?
 

bigpinkdragon286

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Oct 3, 2012
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Your procedure is not as simple as it sounds.

First of all, depending on the version of Windows, you can't transfer the license in that fashion between PCs, but if they both run a common version of Windows, you should be able to change activation keys if need be.

Any new laptop should be running Windows 10, so provided it's activated with a Microsoft account, it should reactivate another copy of Windows 10. If you were running a previous version of Windows on the SSD based laptop, then expect you won't be allowed to activate the older version of Windows on the new machine without buying a license or jumping through some hoops with Microsoft over the phone. You may get away with downgrading Windows 10, if that's the route you're trying to go.

Second, all of the driver dependencies are going to be based on the laptop that Windows was installed on.

Your best bet is to do a clean install once you've moved the SSD.

You second best option is to try a repair installation after moving the SSD.

Finally, since you're probably facing permanent alteration to the installation of Windows on your SSD, you should consider imaging the drive completely, or at least backing up your personal information.
 

bigpinkdragon286

Honorable
Oct 3, 2012
229
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Your procedure is not as simple as it sounds.

First of all, depending on the version of Windows, you can't transfer the license in that fashion between PCs, but if they both run a common version of Windows, you should be able to change activation keys if need be.

Any new laptop should be running Windows 10, so provided it's activated with a Microsoft account, it should reactivate another copy of Windows 10. If you were running a previous version of Windows on the SSD based laptop, then expect you won't be allowed to activate the older version of Windows on the new machine without buying a license or jumping through some hoops with Microsoft over the phone. You may get away with downgrading Windows 10, if that's the route you're trying to go.

Second, all of the driver dependencies are going to be based on the laptop that Windows was installed on.

Your best bet is to do a clean install once you've moved the SSD.

You second best option is to try a repair installation after moving the SSD.

Finally, since you're probably facing permanent alteration to the installation of Windows on your SSD, you should consider imaging the drive completely, or at least backing up your personal information.
 

ebonarm

Estimable
Nov 10, 2015
8
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4,510
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Thank you so much for the answer! Both laptops are registered for Windows 7
 

drtweak

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Sep 17, 2012
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I do agree with bigpinkdragon286 but in my experiences with Windows 10 (Which is a lot as I have been using it since the beta first came out and I do computer work for a living with over 200 small business that i deal with) I have taken a Windows 10 SSD from a AM3 880 Chipset, to a 6th Gen Intel 100 Series chipset, and then to a AM3+ 990 Chipset with windows 10 with OUT having any issues with booting up. So long as they are proper boots (uEFI to uEFI or Legacy to Legacy) you should be able to boot up most of the time. With windows 7 and older it was a very big hit and miss without special software to inject proper drives.

Now if you form Legacy to uEFI and visa versa just change the settings in the bios to match.

A backup is a good idea to have as well even though I have never had an issue with swapping drives around. Getting BSOD's, and then swapping them back without issue.
 

ebonarm

Estimable
Nov 10, 2015
8
0
4,510
0


Thank you so much for the answer, I will do a full backup to one of my external HDDs and try to swap.
Will report back with results
 

bigpinkdragon286

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Oct 3, 2012
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I would make sure you have the product key for both machines backed up in some fashion as well, in case you don't have either the sticker on the machine, the key stored somewhere in BIOS, and need to reinstall or change the product key for Windows at some point.
 

ebonarm

Estimable
Nov 10, 2015
8
0
4,510
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Thank you, will keep that in mind
 
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