IT Advice – again so thanks in advance

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  • IT Advice – again so thanks in advance
  • mk1fan
    Member

    Good evening to the STW ITperts.

    Always had good advice from here regarding my computer woes.

    I asked a few month ago about increasing the RAM on my laptop and that went well.

    Now it is time for me to sort things properly.

    I’ve got a copy of Windows 7 on it’s way to me. At the same time I’d like to install a ssd into the laptop. I don’t use my laptop to store anything so a 128gb drive is fine.

    Should I just swap out the drives and start from scratch (loading my programes) or should I copy the hdd and transfer it on to the ssd then upgrade to Windows 7 (currently on Vista)?

    Markie
    Member

    Start from scratch would be my advice, provided you have all your disks and serial numbers! Always feels like a nice fresh start to me!

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Start from scratch.

    mdavids
    Member

    Start from scratch IMO. There’s nothing like a clean, fresh windows install to really speed up a PC. Backup all your data (music, photos etc) then transfer it once you have your new windows up and running and just re-install all your programs.

    Also, if you’re swapping disks around, it’s always handy to have a usb to sata caddy – basically a small box that you stick the old disk in, and plug a usb into, and it turns it into a usb drive. Means that anything you forget to copy off, you can easily get hold of.

    mk1fan
    Member

    Thanks.

    joe, does it matter if the hdd is Vista and the sdd uses Windows 7 in terms of accessing it via a USB adaptor?

    mogrim
    Member

    joe, does it matter if the hdd is Vista and the sdd uses Windows 7 in terms of accessing it via a USB adaptor?

    Won’t make any difference, if you were going from mac to pc to linux or similar you might have a problem, but between versions of Windows you won’t.

    Edit: your old drive is in the USB caddy, and while it might have a copy of Vista on it, it isn’t really “Vista” as such, it’s just a disk drive.

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    no, they’re in formats such as NTFS or FAT32 or something else rather than being specific to the windows that’s loaded on them

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    You might have permissions issues with some of the system files on the Vista drive; but, you shouldn’t need access to those anyway.

    Before you do anything, I’d go into Vista’s device manager and make a note of the hardware you have. Particularly, the motherboard chipset and the network adapter. Worth looking for some sort of auto-updater on the laptop manufacturer’s website too; they vary in quality but it can sometimes take a headache out of it.

    An in-place upgrade from Vista to W7 is surprisingly painless, but there’s certainly an argument for a clean start.

    mk1fan
    Member

    Thanks again yo’all.

    Ordered a 128gb Sandisk SATA III unit today. I’m using 82gb of hd space at the moment (including a load of rubbish that came preinstalled that I don’t use) so 128 should be fine. Storage of files is on external drives .

    I’ll also get a hd docking port just in case I need to get onto the old unit.

    As I have nearly zero IT skills I ordered a couple of ‘For Dummies’ books to help install and set up the new system.

    After that it’s sorting out NAS boxes to replace my external drives.

    Premier Icon DezB
    Subscriber

    My wife’s Dell came with Vista and some drivers never have been made available for Win7 (sound card drivers).
    Best check the manufacturers website before upgrading (like what I didn’t).

    Premier Icon FuzzyWuzzy
    Subscriber

    Start from scratch but ideally have another PC handy in case you need to download drivers during the install (unlikely though with Win 7, it should install to a point you can get it’s own Internet working even if you haven’t got the best drivers for everything).

    mk1fan
    Member

    Bits and pieces slowing arriving in the post. I’ve set up an old laptop I had spare to use as a back up whilst I change the current one over.

    Looking forward to it. :mrgreen:

    mk1fan
    Member

    Just a quick update;

    Spare laptop now up and running – Windows XP! Taken three days to sort out the updates and drivers but all is [apparently] well.

    SSD has turned up.

    Win 7 Pro has turned up.

    Now just waiting on the idiot guides.

    Running through check list of things to copy off the laptop;
    Drivers and Hardware.
    Website Bookmarks.
    Emails.
    Firefox and Thunderbird settings.
    Desktop files.
    Penassignments for AutoCAD.

    With a bit of luck it’ll be a go on Sunday morning.

    Have to say the spare laptop is not much slower than the one I’m updating. Seems to handle AutoCAD 2011 just fine. Web browsing doesn’t seem slow and video seems fine. It’s an Intel Centrino processor (1.6ghz iirc), 128g HD and 1.5gb RAM. It used to run 256 MEG of RAM when I was at my last practice!

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    My wife’s Dell came with Vista and some drivers never have been made available for Win7 (sound card drivers).

    It’s the same driver model, they’re both NT6. Vista / W7 / 2008 drivers should all be cross-compatible, unless you’ve gone from 32-bit to 64-bit as well.

    mk1fan
    Member

    All the dummies books are here!!!

    All systems go. I may sort out my tax return before attempting the swap though!

    mk1fan
    Member

    Update Ahoy;

    Just finished the tax return and was attempting to sort out a quick job before doing the swap. Then Micrsoft and Norton sent out updates that didn’t like each other. Dreaded BSD. Worked fine in safe mode but computer didn’t like normal mode – tried going back two restore points too.

    So necessity brought about the swap.

    Managed to locate all my back ups in safe mode so got two copies of each. Then whipped out the HDD and slipped in the SDD.

    Powered up and loaded Win 7. Loaded my other programes and Microsoft Security Essentials. All is working great. Can’t find my copy of Office but if push comes to shove I’ll just get a new copy.

    Laptop seems very quiet, I didn’t think I’d notice it so much. It’s noticably faster (although this maybe mainly Win 7). Battery lasts longer.

    Not sure what was storedon my old set-up but (minus Office) there’s nearly half the hard drive space used on the new set up.

    Next job is fixing the office network!

    Premier Icon scaled
    Subscriber

    It’s not windows 7, it’s the SSD. I promise

    mk1fan
    Member

    Eitherway, it’s guooooooood. :mrgreen:

    xiphon
    Member

    I’m rolling our SSD’s on our work laptops – re-install was not a practical option – so I used this little gem…

    http://www.paragon-software.com/technologies/components/migrate-OS-to-SSD/

    Works a treat!

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    I’ve used their Partition Manager software before. Pretty decent.

    Does that thing work on a live system, or is it a boot disc job? Pretty impressive if so.

    skids
    Member

    I would get all new drivers from the website, not try to get them off an old laptop

    xiphon
    Member

    Live system – either via eSATA / USB (laptops) or use a second internal SATA port.

    Re-aligns the drive for you too!

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I reinstalled my machine last night, made two partitions and whilst not watching what I was doing installed the OS on the big one instead of the small one. D’oh.

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