Hi -- I'd describe myself as a mid-level user. I built the PC I'm using now, but there are many, many things I don't understand when it comes to computers and Windows.
When I built my PC two years ago, I included a 64gb OCZ Vertex 3 SSD for the OS and frequently-used programs, such as Chrome, device software, and system support applications. Over two years, updates and so froth have eaten into the SSD, to the point where I have to run disk clean every few days to stay operational.
I've ordered a new 128gb SSD and plan to migrate the same software to it, leaving much more empty space to account for bloat and caching. I'm willing to do a reinstall of Windows and the many programs currently installed on the drive, but I'm wondering if there's any way to maintain the programs (games, Steam, etc.) currently installed on my D: (data) drive.
In short, what's the best way to handle this migration?
I've certainly thought about it! I've seen guides that I think will help me, and it would certainly save some time. I do, however, think I've got a couple of problems with my registry -- for example, I uninstalled Bulletstorm, but I must've lost power or something in the middle, because it still appears on the Control Panel's Programs list. When I select it for uninstallation now, I get a message saying that the action can only be performed for items that are currently installed. Doing a full reinstall would solve problems like that, make it easier to get rid of unused programs, etc., but it would probably also eat a weekend, considering how much I'd have to reinstall, just within Steam, for example.
On the whole, I gather you'd suggest doing the reinstall, but do you know of a way to selectively retain installed programs when doing so?
Try using Revo uninstaller for that Bulletstorm thing. It goes deeper into the registry depending on what uninstall setting you choose. You can also just remove the name from the list using CCleaner(which has uninstall features).
I'd recommend doing a clean install. I can't see a way to clean the computer completely of just the unused files and leave only the usable installed ones because of stuff in the registry.
Although you'd have to install your games all over again, what you probably can do is find and backup the saved data for those games so you don't lose your progress in the game. These save data are usually found in the My Documents folder or in the hidden Appdata folder. Google how to find the save files for your particular game.