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Hard drive questions

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by meggiemagoo, Jan 24, 2007.

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  1. meggiemagoo

    meggiemagoo Thread Starter

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    Hi. I just bought a new laptop because my old one was a Dell and it died on me. I decided to buy a different one (not a Dell) instead of trying to fix it for the millionth time. I took it with me to a laptop store and asked if they could save the hard drive for me and figure out a way to transfer the data to the new computer. What they did was they encased the old drive in a box with a USB cable connected to it and told me that I can connect it to my new computer any time I want to and access any of my files or programs. While I'm sure this sounds very easy, I am nervous about it and I don't want to screw anything up. How is the best way to access my files and save them on my new drive? What about programs?

    Next question: Is it possible to transfer installed programs from an old drive to a new drive? I think we are better off reinstalling them on the new drive, but my husband thinks that the laptop place should have transferred them all for me to save me the trouble. I don't even think that is possible and if it were, wouldn't we end up with some nasty registry problems? Maybe I'm wrong. Please share your vast wealth of computer knowledge with me! :)
     
  2. griffinspc

    griffinspc

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    2nd question first. No, you can't transfer installed programs from one drive to another. I won't go into the complicated reasons you'll have to install any programs clean and fresh. I will say that if you create an image of a drive with software that's available you can recreate that image on a new drive but the fact is with what you're describing that wouldn't be the case.

    1st question. If they did it correctly you'll have no problem. Basically they turned the old drive into a slave that you can just copy all the old files off. Not programs but Word files, photos, music, whatever. Didn't they give you some instructions?
     
  3. meggiemagoo

    meggiemagoo Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the info on the programs. I knew that wasn't possible, but sometimes it's good to have someone else tell you that you're right!

    I suppose they would have given me directions if I had been the one to pick it up from the store. But I wasn't and now they're closed. Patience has never been a virtue of mine. :)

    They did say something about slaving the hard drive, but it's just so much information that I can't remember exactly what they said. I'm guessing that you are right and that's what they did. I have a few more questions for you, though. Do I need to make sure the slave hard drive is unplugged before I boot up? And is it possible to use this slave drive as kind of a back up for any new documents that I want to save?
     
  4. griffinspc

    griffinspc

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    Well, you can spell patience, that's a bonus. :D When you said they put it in a case or box with a USB cable are you saying that's where it is now?
     
  5. meggiemagoo

    meggiemagoo Thread Starter

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    Yes, that is where it is right now.
     
  6. griffinspc

    griffinspc

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    Hey. I'm being called to dinner and I never disappoint my Lady if possible so I'll come back later or someone else will jump in:

    OK, it's in the case and you have a cable to connect to your USB port. Go ahead and plug it in either when the PC is on or when it's not. Either way the beauty of USB is your machine will find it. If they set it up right you'll see it as a new drive. It might be drive letter "E" or "F", whatever it doesn't matter. You can copy all your files off it to the new drive. Copy and Paste.

    Now to make it a new backup drive you'll want to format it and clean it entirely but it's not that difficult. You could just delete everything on it but what fun is that.
     
  7. meggiemagoo

    meggiemagoo Thread Starter

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    ok, I finally got an opportunity to mess around with this drive and I can't seem to get it to work. I called the store, they gave me instructions but I can't seem to get the computer to recognize the external drive. They installed a program called Fast Lynx to help transfer files? I tried using that, but it only gives me the option of the C drive. There is no other drive listed. When I plugged the drive into the USB port, it signaled and the light on the drive came on, but and I can't find it anywhere on my computer. Does this make any sense?? Is there another way to find it?
     
  8. bigbear

    bigbear

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    Can you confirm this external drive has a power supply?
    Go to diskmanagement and see if it shows up there
    Start>run and type diskmgmt.msc and hit enter
     
  9. meggiemagoo

    meggiemagoo Thread Starter

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    Ok, I did all that. Where does it say that it has a power supply? It says drive E is healthy. It lists drive C as well as healthy. Here's the scary part: it says drive E has 100% space available. Does that mean there is nothing on it??
     
  10. bigbear

    bigbear

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    There should be another external power supply connected to it or it could be USB powered which normally requires a "Y" USB cable, one usb port is not normally enough power for the drive to function correctly
    I am refering to a 3.5inch drive so it could different for the 2.5inch
    If its healthy thats good,
    100% does indeed mean there is nothing on it.
    While in diskmanagement right click on the drive, you should be able to explore the drive
    Not to sure about the software the shop gave you though
     
  11. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

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    You do NOT need any special software to read the USB drive .. Windows is enough.
    If they sold you the software .. get your money back.

    If they erased or formatted the drive .. there is software that can recover it .. if you do NOT write to it.

    I'm guessing you need more power and a Y adapter as previously mentioned.
    The Y adapter uses two USB ports to power the external and doubles the available power to it.

    Can you hook up the USB external ...
    Right click on "My Computer" ... choose >> Manage >> Disc Management .
    See if it shows up in Disc Management .. and attach a screen shot if it does.

    If it shows up in Disc Management .. Do not poke around on it in disc management just yet.
     
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