Solved New Operating System Install

Microsoft Windows server 2003 r2 standar...
May 7, 2012 at 17:01:22
Specs: Windows XP, Intel Core Duo 2 [3 ghz]/2 GB RAM

I am currently running Windows XP on a 160GB HDD

My goal is to install Windows 7 on a new HDD I have purchased. I want to do this over the weekend so I dont have any business downtime.

What I want to know is if the task is not complete by Monday (there is a lot of information I need to transfer across from the old drive), can I simply plug the 160GB HDD back in by itself and boot up Windows XP with no issues.

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May 7, 2012 at 17:14:22
"My goal is to install Windows 7 on a new HDD I have purchased....can I simply plug the 160GB HDD back in by itself and boot up Windows XP with no issues."

Probably, but it'd be best to go into the BIOS and write down the settings for the current (160GB) drive, if you can do so. If your new one is a different model, size, manufacturer, it may have some issues (re-)recognizing the old drive. Also, you should back up any important data in case something goes horribly wrong. Also (actually, first), make sure your machine has enough "horsepower" to handle Win7 adequately (given your specs, it probably should):

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."

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May 7, 2012 at 18:24:00
May I ask for the other spec..? Changing a new harddrive and install win7 won't give you the best experience. What's your ram, CPU, etc... ?
You can just back up you file onto your new harddrive then create a dual boot. Being able to boot from win7 or xp on one harddrive...or just have win7 and use vd or xp mode.. then just use that 160gb hdd as a external hard-drive.

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May 7, 2012 at 21:06:04
✔ Best Answer
If you want the ability and protection of being able to swap back in the XP drive, remove or unplug it completely before installing Windows 7 so the boot sector for the XP disk remains unchanged and the new drive gets a completely new boot sector for Windows 7.
Yes, run the Windows 7 compatibility test.
Yes, Download all drivers for your hardware for your version of Windows 7 (32bit and 64bit require a different set of drivers) before you begin and put them on a flash drive or CD for easy loading later (saves a lot of time and annoyance, especially since you have a self imposed deadline).
If you can get most drivers (chipset, etc.) but not either graphics or sound, consider adding a new video card or sound card which will have new drivers available. A video card does not need to be expensive if it is just for office type work.
For Windows 7 32bit you can run it with 2GB of memory or add a bit more. For Windows 7 64bit you should plan to use 4GB of memory (more if you use certain graphical programs or may use extremely large excel spreadsheets (or databases) to the order tens of thousands of records or lines).
After you get Windows 7 running, reinstall the old hard drive but boot to your BIOS set up and make sure that only your new hard drive is set up as bootable so when you save and exit you will boot to Windows 7 and can still copy files from the old hard drive directly.
At such a time when you no longer need to keep the XP installation, you can delete the old partition on the old drive, repartition and format it as a storage or back up destination.

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.

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May 7, 2012 at 21:19:37
Thanks for all your suggestions. I'll unplug the XP drive first before installing Windows 7 on the new drive.

The hardware is fine to run Windows 7 - 32 bit. Its is a dual core 3ghz. 2 GB RAM.

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May 8, 2012 at 15:35:03
I agree with Fingers. After you have both hard drives connected you can boot to either drive. The method you must use varies with the BIOS in the motherboard. My BIOS shows a message to hit F11 to choose what drive to boot to. Keeping the old WinXP installation will give you added insurance if this computer is being used for business.

I suggest you partition the new hard drive into at least 3 partitions. The first for Windows 7 and a few core programs. The second for all your remaining programs. The third for your personal files like music, movies, photos.

Remember to maintain backups.

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