[SOLVED] Moving my windows 10 installation

Feb 20, 2021
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My windows installation is currently on a small m.2 drive, but it's getting full and I want to move it to a partition on my SSD. i already backed up all of my files, and also have a spare os disk if I need it. I just need to figure out how to move it.

It would be nice to have a fresh install but if that's not possible I understand.
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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Yeah a clean install, If I missed any files on my c drive I could just redownload it.
What is the drive you will be installing on?

Have ONLY that one drive connected during this.
 

Lafong

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Dec 2, 2021
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You should be able to "move" the current installation to a new drive by imaging or by cloning, using software built for that purpose.

You say "move it to a partition on my SSD". Do you mean to one specific partition or do you mean to that SSD in general?

You say "nice to have a fresh install". Why wouldn't that be possible if you wanted to do that rather than transfer the existing system?
 
Feb 20, 2021
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Okay, so I have a 1tb ssd that I use for files I access regularly like games media etc, I also have 2 x 1tb 7200rpm HDD. I have one free and the other with backups on it and they're both on an external dock. I don't have a partition made just yet.

Also I want to do a fresh install to get rid of the bloat ware since the m.2 is from an HP omen laptop so there's a ton of bloat in it.
 

Lafong

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If you want to get rid of bloat, you should just do a clean install onto the new drive.........rather than trying to get rid of bloat on the existing install.

"Fresh install" is not "move from old drive to new drive".
 

USAFRet

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Yeah a clean install, If I missed any files on my c drive I could just redownload it.
What is the drive you will be installing on?

Have ONLY that one drive connected during this.
 

Lafong

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Dec 2, 2021
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Standard method:

Make a bootable USB flash drive by using Windows "Media Creation Tool" available at Microsoft web site.

Using your own USB flash drive. Might have to be 8 GB in size or larger?

Back up everything you want to save on the old drive.

Disconnect all drives other than the drive you want to install Windows on.

Boot from the USB flash drive you made. Follow the prompts.

You will have a chance early in the installation to delete all partitions from the new drive. Do that.

Cross fingers.
 
Feb 20, 2021
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Standard method:

Make a bootable USB flash drive by using Windows "Media Creation Tool" available at Microsoft web site.

Using your own USB flash drive. Might have to be 8 GB in size or larger?

Back up everything you want to save on the old drive.

Disconnect all drives other than the drive you want to install Windows on.

Boot from the USB flash drive you made. Follow the prompts.

You will have a chance early in the installation if you want to delete all partitions from the new drive. Say yes.

Cross fingers.
Okay, so I could do a clean install on another drive using me existing os or did I misinterpret?
 

Lafong

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Okay, so I could do a clean install on another drive using me existing os or did I misinterpret?

Your "existing OS" drive has nothing to do with it. It should be in the closet, totally disconnected.

You need to make the installer for the new installation yourself.

If that installer will NOT boot your PC, you fouled up.
 

USAFRet

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Okay, well if I'm doing the clean install, what all areas should I back up in my c drive
With this clean install, you're starting from a bare OS.



Any personal files, copy them to some other drive.
Just the files, not the Libraries they may live in.
Later, you can copy them back to this new drive and OS.

Export the Profiles from whatever browsers you use.

On a different flash drive, it might be helpful to download whatever drivers you may need for your hardware. Easier to do it now, rather than later.

Document all your username/password combinations.
Download the installs for any software you use.
 

Lafong

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Dec 2, 2021
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Email if any.

Browser bookmarks if any.

If you typed up a spaghetti sauce recipe right now, where would you save it?

Somewhere under C:\users\your user name whatever it is ??

That's where most people keep stuff.

Where are the pictures of your dog?

It's up to you to know where your personal stuff is. You ought to be backing that stuff up anyway.
 
Feb 20, 2021
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Back when I had my laptop I did all default installs, but a buddy of mine found all the apps I use and redownloaded all the apps he found on my c drive, he used his weekend and searched every directory. If something doesn't work, I can fix it later. The only thing I can think of is my user path up to all the roaming stuff. That's all I can think of.
 

Lafong

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You probably should back up everything in that roaming folder.

Or maybe EVERYTHING under C:\users\your-user-name-whatever-it-is

No harm done by having multiple backups. Better safe than sorry, etc.

After your new install, you should also be able to re-connect your old drive and copy a lot of stuff from it back to your new installation.

Ultimately, it's up to you to find and backup whatever you will need in the future from the old drive.
 

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