I need my files from old HDD

Alright so here it goes, I've spent the last 6 hours trying to deal with this... and I'm giving up the search.

Basically I have an old HDD from a laptop that was originally win vista, with an win 7 upgrade disc (not win 7 full install disc). Well that computer is fried, HP pavilion dv9700 if you know its history. I have a lot of things I want to take off that old HDD and transfer to my new laptop. I only know a little, I know how to change bios and how to install hardware, but I've heard things about having a slave and I know nothing about it.

My new laptop is win 7 (all os's mentioned are 64bit) and I'm wondering which way would be best/safest to try and retrieve these files. I've seen things about the HDD's can be set not to interfere with each other and also where HDD(2)can be accessed while booting from HDD(1). If I've left anything out, I'll gladly get the information for you.

I know there are USB to SATA adapters but I dont want to spend days trying to transfer files. From the ones I looked at (cheapest, no way I'll pay a lot for probably one time use) and it was USB 2.0 with something like 480Mbps. correct me if I'm wrong but i figured sata would have a lot faster data transfer, I think I read somewhere 3.0 Gb/s.

Thank You.
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  1. SATA will be faster(3-4 times) but not that much faster, as harddrives can't even hit 1.5Gb/s . Unless you have esata/USB 3 on your new laptop, a second harddrive bay, or a desktop, USB 2.0 is your only option. There's no reason for it to have to be one time use though. You can use it as an external drive. And enclosures are cheap.

  2. Ya, I've seen all those. I think I want to use my 2nd HDD location and maybe keep it in for extra use. The controversy I have is I have an OS already on the 2nd HDD and want to retrieve files. While if I choose to keep as a secondary will I have to make it a slave (which I know nothing on how to do) and basically if I can access those files on 2nd HDD while booting from new HDD without any issues. I don't need to be told exact details. If you tell me I can access old (2nd) HDD while still booting from new (1st) HDD and in doing such that I will in fact have to make 2nd HDD as a slave, than I can research how to make it a slave drive. I just don't know much about it, so say since I have my 1st HDD with its own win 7 OS, and I install 2nd HDD while it has its own win 7 OS ( 2nd HDD was originally win vista with upgrade to win 7, NOT a full win 7 install, not sure if it would make a difference) will making the 2nd HDD a slave destroy the information I am wanting to retrieve from it.
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