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Ssd installation help

Last response: in Storage
January 1, 2012 5:41:55 AM

I recently bought a 120GB vertex 3 SSD and I want to add it to the system. I've seen many guides on ssd installation, but none actually helps with my situation. Right now I have a fully functional PC with windows 7 installed on a typical 7200rpm hard drive. I want to install windows 7 on the SSD and make the hard drive a storage. I don't really care if the hard drive gets formatted at this point. The question is how to format a hard drive without installing windows on it. What happens if I ignore the hard drive and just plug it back in after I install windows on the SSD? What happens to windows on the hard drive? What about my files and documents?

Thanks for reading

More about : ssd installation

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January 1, 2012 6:21:23 AM

Be sure to back up your Windows license from the HDD if it was an OEM license.

Disconnect the HDD and connect the SSD while the system is off (dont worry about formatting the SSD at this point)

Install Win7 on the SSD following a normal guide. The installation will make it the primary boot partition (C) since the other drive isn't present. Once the new SSD is set up for Windows, shut down. Go and plug the old drive in, start and make sure the boot order in BIOS sees the SSD first. When it goes to Windows it will be recognized as a D or higher drive, not the boot drive. All your files should still be there, but a full format would be a good idea anyway to make sure there's no conflicts. You can copy your old files to the SSD first if you want. Be sure to remove the "system reserved" partition on the old drive, not the SSD.

Should be fine, I did it this way with no conflicts. I might have had to initialize the HDD in disk management before it was recognized though.
January 1, 2012 7:03:47 AM

I have the retail windows 7 ultimate so no need to back up the license there. To make it less of a hessle, my plan is to format the hard drive after installing windows on SSD(drive C) and setting up the hard drive as drive D, so what do I do to format the hhd after backing up the old files? I've never had more than 1 drive, so sorry for the dumb question. Thanks!
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January 1, 2012 8:07:43 PM

Best answer selected by asurastrike.