Question If I install my Windows OS in my SSD, can I play games on HDD without reinstalling them?


Nov 3, 2015
Hello, I have a question.

I'm planning to buy a 120GB SSD and I'll be using it for Windows OS, Office and gaming(2 often played games: max). So I'm concerned on how can I delete the old OS in my HDD without wiping the games inside it? I can't move all of them to the SSD(temporary storage) and wipe the whole HDD(move the games back to the newly formatted HDD) since they're kind of heavy (which is 600GB total of games, files, etc.). I just really want to stay in that way and play like nothing happened and also at the same time, not reinstalling(if possible) them because it's tiring and takes a lot of time(slow internet here). If I install my Windows OS in my SSD, can I play games on HDD without reinstalling them?

It depends on the game. Some will require a complete reinstall. Some games are better about being portable. For example, GW2 stores everything in one big binary blob. If you copy that file to a new location, the first time you run it again it recognizes it's been moved and reconfigures Windows to run it from the new location. I'd try copying it and see if it works. You only need to reinstall if it doesn't work. Steam games in particular allow you to restore an old game library location in a new installation.

Do note that a lot of games now store savegames in the C:\Users\Username\Documents\MyGames folder. So you'd have to copy that from your HDD to the SSD in order to restore your saved games.
Reactions: hopsteriam


I'm planning to buy a 120GB SSD
250GB, $40

500GB, $68

To your question, it depends on the game platform.
Steam games can be located on different drives, probably without reinstalling.

Just have to tell the new Steam client where those games live.
Steam games location
In the steam client:
Steam Library Folders
Add library folder

However, doing that in the context of not deleting the old Windows install and everything else on that drive/partition will be a pain.
Reactions: hopsteriam


Mar 12, 2018
A lot of people do not know how an SSD works. As stated above DON'T buy a 120g SSD as it will fill up fast as windoze balloons. The more free space you have on an SSD the longer it will last. I grabbed a 500g and will never allow it past 300g so it lasts a long time. I have a 2tb for programmes. A 120 will wear out fast due to swapping more with less free space. Plenty of youtube videos explaining how SSD's work. Check it out, helps when you understand how things work. If you already know this then you know you should at least get a 250g. The games re install issues and saved games location part has already been covered above so no need to say anything there. Happy gaming :).


Apr 19, 2017
i tend to use a 500 gb ssd for my main drive and have my current games on the same ssd and a hdd for storage for files / games im not playing etc best way to do it 😁

i would just have the ssd plugged into the pc dont connect the hdd until you have install the os then plug the hdd in while pc is off make sure to boot to the ssd and then can edit the files if using steam as some one has said you can tell the game launcher where the games are and it will be fine with it but depending on the game if not installed by steam it may or may not work 🤔