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Can I install Windows 10 on a new hard drive without cloning old drive

Posted on 2016-09-12
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Last Modified: 2016-10-27
I bought a desktop computer with Windows 7 and have followed the upgrade to Windows 10 and everything worked smoothly until about one month ago.  Suddenly I could not print to my attached printer, a Kodak AIO 5300.  I purchased a Kodak Verite thinking it was a driver problem, but I am having the same problem.  Six months ago I had received popup that hard drive was possibly corrupted and I should move to new drive so I purchased a new drive but never installed it.  I have now installed it in my computer but it is still blank.  I would like to move Windows 10 to the new drive to see if I can solve the problem.  But if I clone the drive I will just move the problem to the new drive.  Is there any way I could load the data to the new drive without a clone?
I am thinking about using the Windows 7 disk that came with the computer and loading it on the new drive and updating it to Windows 10.  Then I would copy all the program files and data files to the new drive.  Then I would copy the registry from the old drive to the new drive.  
I do not know if that approach would work or not.  I am hoping to find somebody else with a suggestion. or advice.
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Question by:RHWeston
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by:Malmensa
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1. Obtain the cables needed to install BOTH drives in the machine, temporarily. If it is a desktop, you can probably just connect to the CDROM cables, if it is a laptop, you will probably require an external USB enclosure.

2. Create a bootable USB or CDROM Windows 10 install media.

3. Install the new drive, install Windows 10 on it. Run all updates.

4. Temporarily install the old drive as a secondary one. Copy off what data you can, in order of importance (to you).

5. Run CHKDSK /F on the old drive, then attempt once more to copy off any data.

6. Install apps.
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garycase earned 251 total points
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No need to ever bother with Windows 7.    Since the PC has been updated to Windows 10, it will be recognized by the Windows' activation server, and you can simply install a clean copy of Windows 10.    The only thing you have to do is be sure you install the same version (i.e. Pro or Home).

Simply create a bootable Windows 10 installation media (USB Flash drive or DVD) using the media creation link at Microsoft  ...

=>  Download the Media Creation Tool from here:  https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10/
=>  Run the tool, and select to create media for another PC.

Now disconnect your old drive and install the new hard drive.

Boot to the Windows 10 installer; and install a clean copy of Windows 10 on the new hard drive.    When asked for a key, click on "I don't have a key ..." => the install will activate automatically without a key since '10 was already on that PC.

Once you're up and running; shut down and connect the old drive to the computer in addition to the new drive.    Then be sure the BIOS is set to boot to the new drive; and boot.    You'll then be able to see the old drive as a second drive; and you can copy your data from it to the new drive -- and when you're certain you have everything you need you can simply delete all the partitions on the old drive; reformat it; and use it as a secondary drive [For backups; storing system images; etc.]
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by:noxcho
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Depends on what exactly your plan is. If you want to clone the existing HDD to new drive then you need a cloning tool for this.
If you want to reinstall Windows on new drive then you should follow the advice above.
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by:rindi
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After installing Windows 10 on the new disk (as mentioned above, you don't need to install Windows 7 first, when you get asked for a product key just click on I don't have the product, the installation will continue, and activate automatically once you have an Internet connection), You shouldn't have to connect your old disk. Rather just restore your data from your backups which you already have. The old disk would only be needed if you don't have backups, which definitely should not be the case, or if some of your backups aren't completely updated.
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by:PeteVfi
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OK, something striked on my eyes on this -> "Then I would copy all the program files and data files to the new drive.  Then I would copy the registry from the old drive to the new drive."  I doubt all this will lead into a successful result, maybe rather in a mess ... Data files OK, but others doubtful, and still something else important sure will got missing ... Hope you don't have 10's of software to be re-installed, or with missing license codes.

But, still I'm wondering, why wouldn't you troubleshoot the Kodak AIO 5300 problem, which of course may be a demanding task, e.g. driver thing, or ... You could even begin with the mentioned elevated command chkdsk c: /r (note, includes /f) taking the machine for an hour or so.
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by:garycase
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I missed that bit r.e. copying the registry => definitely NOT what you want to do !!
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by:RHWeston
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I want to thank everyone for their comments.  Gary Case told me how to build the media creation and that is a key.  Peter Vfi wondered why I would do anything with the registry.  I had been thinking about avoiding reloading all my software, but since I do have installation media for all my programs I will just reload everything.  I did not want to clone because I would just bring my problems over.  I had troubleshooted my Kodak printer, and even the new one I received.  The only advice I could get on the new printer was to contact Microsoft for assistance so I was looking for an alternative.  I will try to go with these ideas later today.  I think that by paying attention to all these suggestions it will be successful.  If so I will let you know when I close the question.
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by:PeteVfi
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OK, thanks, and yes, good plan and grip on it.  

I have a few times in the very past tried some shortcut like your original plan, but found myself in a forest, or rather in a swamp ... the cloning is the right solution, or a clean re-install, program installs, new user profiles, data transfers etc.  With all this burden also the whole base/structure of the OS will got cleared/renewed from the possible past encumberances from Windows 7 or even earlier usage periods. This clean re-install, or a new machine, are something I now and then try to recommend also to my clients, and on some cases they even believe on me.
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by:garycase
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Since you may be "fiddling" a good bit with the Kodak issue, I'd do the following:

(a)  Load a clean copy of Windows 10 (as I outlined earlier)
(b)  Install the programs you need to reinstall that you are certain work fine with '10
(c)  Check for updates until there aren't any more (i.e. the system's fully up-to-date)
(d)  Now make an IMAGE of the system, using your favorite imaging utility (I like Image for DOS, but Acronis, RunTime's DriveImage XML, etc. all work fine -- or even the built-in Windows 10 System Image utility)

THEN you can install the Kodak software with no real danger of doing anything that would corrupt the new install -- since you can always simply restore the image you created in (d)
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by:RHWeston
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Thanks to everyone for your comments.  I have the new drive up and running and using the printer.  I have a lot of work ahead of me loading all the programs from the old drive, but fortunately I have media and keys for all purchased software and will be able to reload the free software.
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by:garycase
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Glad it's all working well => don't forget to image the final setup so if you ever need to reload in the future it'll be a simple job of just restoring the image.
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by:PeteVfi
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OK, great! And now, please, the last service to the supporters, the rating ....
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by:rindi
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And don't forget NOT to install stuff you don't need before you do the image. A fresh install is always a good chance get a fresh system without all the software you don't really need that can cause problems and slow the system.
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