adding a old hard drive to a new system

Posted on 2002-07-12
Last Modified: 2010-04-13
I recently bought a new computer and I have an old Compaq Presario system as well.
I was wondering if I clean out the hard drive on the old system and format it can I just connect it to my new computer and will windows 2000 professional detect the old hard drive.
Will this work or damage my system?
Thanks for any advice given
Question by:Frankiesgroove
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Expert Comment

ID: 7150937

just ensure when you install the old drive in the new machine that the jumper setting on the old drive is set to "slave" (there should be a label on the front of the drive telling you how to do this). Also, depending on what you have make sure that the old drive is ATA compatible. How old is your presario?

Steven Defore

Author Comment

ID: 7150942
the Compaq is very old several years
DO you think I shouldn't try it?

Expert Comment

ID: 7150964
how big is the hard drive?
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Author Comment

ID: 7150980
it is a 20gig and I verified That I bought the Compaq in 1998 I was just wondering if I would be able to use the HD in my new system
P4 1.7
Win 20001

Expert Comment

ID: 7151137
I would say it should work fine. If you want to use it on the same cable with another hard you MUST be sure that the jumper of one drive is set to slave and the other to master. Having both jumpers set the same will likely damage one or both drives. I would as an additional precaution initially connect the drive by itself, format it perhaps even install an operating system and confirm that it will work, then reformat if you don't want it to be bootable. The procedure of having it as the lone hard drive on the system will prevent an accidental format of your main drive. Try installing the drive with the jumper set to master and if that doesn't want to work then try it with the jumper removed. Just be sure that the jumper is put back in the slave on one drive and master on the other before you run with the two. Also remember to touch the computer case to discharge static before touching the hard drive (or any other internal components)

Expert Comment

ID: 7151164
This isn't an answer, but I would just like to say, putting the hard drives in with both set to master or both set to slave will not cause any harm, contrary to what mdan said. It will simply not be able to see either drive, and the HDD activity light will most likely be stuck on.

Accepted Solution

EricWestbo earned 50 total points
ID: 7151379
  Nuts & Bolts... you should have no problem adding your old 20g HD to your new system.  Depending on the current configuration of your new system, the old HD can be added as a slave drive on your primary channel, or as the master OR slave drive on your secondary channel (it all depends upon what other drives you currently have installed on the system).
  While having two drives on the same channel both set as master will not cause a loss of data or damage to your system, it may cause the system to stop responding until you correct the issue.
  For step-by-step instructions on adding a harddrive to your system, check out:

Hope this helps!


Expert Comment

ID: 7151385
BTW... as an aside... adding new and/or old HD's to current systems is nearly a standard operating procedure in the IT world & is done regularly.


Author Comment

ID: 7151889
Thanks for the help and the link

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