Okay so I'm ready to make the jump over from IDE to Sata, but I've got a few questions before I tackle this and I was hoping the Tom's community could share some wisdom.
Currently i've got a 250gb Maxtor on IDE, and I just got my fresh new 7200.12 500gb delivered. I do have a few questions about how to get this done, namely: how do I get this done? I'd really like to not have to reinstall windows, etc, so I guess imaging is what I need to do? I'm running windows 7 though, and I'm not sure exactly which program to use for this or if I can do it from the OS or need to make a boot disk. I don't even know if my mobo (gigabyte p35ds3l) will recognize both IDE and Sata simultaneously.
Go to the website of the manufacturer of your new 500 GB SATA drive, Seagate I presume from your model number. Download for free and install their software called Disk Wizard - it is a customized version of Acronis True Image. Read its manual. and it will show you how to make a clone of absolutely everything from your old drive to your new one. In doing so, be sure to pay attention to two items:
1. By default it MAY want to make your new clone the same size as you old drive. You can let it do this, and it will leave half of your new drive as Unallocated Space. You can use it later to create a second Partition on the new drive which will be treated by Windows as a whole separate drive with its own letter name. OR, as you make the clone, you can use menu options to have the clone occupy ALL of the new drive as one larger Partition.
2. This is probably default, but check that the new clone will be created in a BOOTABLE partition so that your machine can boot from it when done.
Once the cloning is done, I recommend you shut down and disconnect the old Maxtor, maybe leaving it mounted inside for now. When you reboot, go directly into the BIOS Setup screens and make sure the SATA drive you just worked on is set to be your boot device, and there is no attempt to use the old Maxtor on the IDE port for booting. Maybe the SATA drive is your second boot device, after trying an optical drive first. Save and Exit the BIOS setup and boot into Windows. After you're satisfied all is working as planned, you can decide what to do with the older Maxtor unit. In the meantime, it is a complete backup up to the point of your change-over.
Awesome, thanks for all the input. I'll see what I get tonight!
- also, Norton Ghost seemed to work, but wouldn't load the task bar... only gave me a light blue screen with the mouse after "Configuring your desktop" for about 5 minutes. Only option at that point was to restart, I booted to a windows 7 restore disk that I had just previously created and it said it found a borked windows 7 installation but also that it couldn't repair it. Hopefully I have better luck with Acronis.
You sir win at life, you've shown me that I clearly don't belong on the internet, and have no business asking a tech question on a tech forum. I commend you for pointing this fact out, and I can only hope that some day when you own the world I may be your footrest.
To everyone else that helped out, thanks! Acronis works with windows 7