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Keeping the Original HDD after Migrating to an SSD

  1. #1


    Posts : 128
    Windows 8

    Keeping the Original HDD after Migrating to an SSD


    In the next few weeks I plan to migrate from my Win8 HDD to an SSD. I know how to do that so that is not the question. I would like to know if I can keep the old HDD installed and boot to the SSD without confusing things. If I do that will having two Win8 installations offer any problems even though the one on the SSD will be drive C:? Can I just assign another or no drive letter to the HDD Win8?

    Thanks for any suggestion?

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  2. #2


    Posts : 474
    Win 8 (64) : Win 7 (64) : Vista (64) : Android JB 4.2 : iOS 6


    I have that set up on my Win 7 when I installed an SSD (2 OS on different drives but SSD is the primary boot drive C). It should work on Win 8 too by simply changing the drive letter of the HDD. So if something goes terribly wrong with the SSD, I could probably just switch back to HDD without reinstalling the OS. The HDD is just a storage for all other files and I just have the OS and primary programs on the SSD.

    But of course a still have my recovery discs as backup.
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  3. #3


    Posts : 128
    Windows 8


    Thank you very much. I was kinda hoping that would be the case.
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  4. #4


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Quote Originally Posted by JJG View Post
    In the next few weeks I plan to migrate from my Win8 HDD to an SSD. I know how to do that so that is not the question. I would like to know if I can keep the old HDD installed and boot to the SSD without confusing things. If I do that will having two Win8 installations offer any problems even though the one on the SSD will be drive C:? Can I just assign another or no drive letter to the HDD Win8?

    Thanks for any suggestion?
    Per EULA you can't have more than one bootable installation of the "same" (i.e., same product key) Win8 at the same time.
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  5. #5


    Sloe Deth, Californicatia
    Posts : 3,908
    Windows 8 Pro with Media Center/Windows 7


    Quote Originally Posted by JJG View Post
    In the next few weeks I plan to migrate from my Win8 HDD to an SSD. I know how to do that so that is not the question. I would like to know if I can keep the old HDD installed and boot to the SSD without confusing things. If I do that will having two Win8 installations offer any problems even though the one on the SSD will be drive C:? Can I just assign another or no drive letter to the HDD Win8?

    Thanks for any suggestion?
    If you do, you'll end up with a dual boot. Whenever I am migrating from an old drive to a new, I always remove the old drive from the system so that won't happen. You can always add it back in later, after you have gotten the new drive booting.
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  6. #6


    Posts : 474
    Win 8 (64) : Win 7 (64) : Vista (64) : Android JB 4.2 : iOS 6


    If the SSD is set as the C drive and the first bootable drive, there will be no problem. I had that setup for quite a long time. I know it's not necessary but I have nothing to lose if I keep the original OS installation in a secondary drive (1TB). There will be no licensing issue as you have both drives in one and the same PC with only one in use which is the cloned OS. MS is very much aware that a lot of people are migrating to SSD this way.

    Click image for larger version
    Last edited by fourthofjuly; 12 Apr 2013 at 22:31.
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  7. #7


    Posts : 474
    Win 8 (64) : Win 7 (64) : Vista (64) : Android JB 4.2 : iOS 6


    Quote Originally Posted by znod View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JJG View Post
    In the next few weeks I plan to migrate from my Win8 HDD to an SSD. I know how to do that so that is not the question. I would like to know if I can keep the old HDD installed and boot to the SSD without confusing things. If I do that will having two Win8 installations offer any problems even though the one on the SSD will be drive C:? Can I just assign another or no drive letter to the HDD Win8?

    Thanks for any suggestion?
    Per EULA you can't have more than one bootable installation of the "same" (i.e., same product key) Win8 at the same time.
    The poster is going to make a bootable cloned copy of his existing OS drive. He is not going to do a second INSTALLATION.
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  8. #8


    Hafnarfjörður IS
    Posts : 4,376
    Linux Centos 7, W8.1, W7, W2K3 Server W10


    Quote Originally Posted by znod View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JJG View Post
    In the next few weeks I plan to migrate from my Win8 HDD to an SSD. I know how to do that so that is not the question. I would like to know if I can keep the old HDD installed and boot to the SSD without confusing things. If I do that will having two Win8 installations offer any problems even though the one on the SSD will be drive C:? Can I just assign another or no drive letter to the HDD Win8?

    Thanks for any suggestion?
    Per EULA you can't have more than one bootable installation of the "same" (i.e., same product key) Win8 at the same time.
    Hi there
    The EULA doesn't say that at all -- what it DOES say is that you can only use ONE license of Windows on a specific machine which is NOT the same thing at all.

    You could have 96 HDD's all with your copy of Windows on it -- but you could only boot ONE of them at the same time.

    Where this starts getting "dubious" is if you are running W8 as a Virtual Machine. Since Virtual machines can be "Cloned" (so they have identical "Virtual" hardware) it's theoretically possible to say boot up 10 identical VM's. Now this IS against the EULA. For licensing purposes a VM is considered identical to a Real computer.

    What you are actually implying is that it's technically illegal to have say several backup copies of your OS stored on HDD's on your computer which quite plainly is totally absurd.

    Cheers
    jimbo
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  9. #9


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Quote Originally Posted by fourthofjuly View Post
    There will be no licensing issue as you have both drives in one and the same PC with only one in use which is the cloned OS. MS is very much aware that a lot of people are migrating to SSD this way.
    What you say is true provided that both drives are not installed (i.e., bootable) at the same time on one or more machines.

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo45 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by znod View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JJG View Post
    In the next few weeks I plan to migrate from my Win8 HDD to an SSD. I know how to do that so that is not the question. I would like to know if I can keep the old HDD installed and boot to the SSD without confusing things. If I do that will having two Win8 installations offer any problems even though the one on the SSD will be drive C:? Can I just assign another or no drive letter to the HDD Win8?

    Thanks for any suggestion?
    Per EULA you can't have more than one bootable installation of the "same" (i.e., same product key) Win8 at the same time.
    Hi there
    The EULA doesn't say that at all -- what it DOES say is that you can only use ONE license of Windows on a specific machine which is NOT the same thing at all.

    You could have 96 HDD's all with your copy of Windows on it -- but you could only boot ONE of them at the same time.

    Where this starts getting "dubious" is if you are running W8 as a Virtual Machine. Since Virtual machines can be "Cloned" (so they have identical "Virtual" hardware) it's theoretically possible to say boot up 10 identical VM's. Now this IS against the EULA. For licensing purposes a VM is considered identical to a Real computer.

    What you are actually implying is that it's technically illegal to have say several backup copies of your OS stored on HDD's on your computer which quite plainly is totally absurd.

    Cheers
    jimbo
    I didn't say what I intended unambiguously. I meant to convey"per EULA, you can't have more than one (bootable) installation of the "same" Win8 (i.e., same product key) installed at the same time on one or multiple machines. In other words, you can't install (with boot capability) under the same product key on more than one machine at the same time, and you can't have multiple simultaneous installs (with boot capability) of Win8 on the same machine under the same product key.
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  10. #10


    Portsmouth Hants
    Posts : 772
    Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center


    You could have 96 HDD's all with your copy of Windows on it -- but you could only boot ONE of them at the same time.
    Strictly, no - because this could lead to versioning of each copy - if games were installed on one, office software on another, or just a particular set of updates etc., you could have in effect, 96 differently purposed OS copies for the price of one.

    More threatening to Microsoft is that a large number of contemporaneous OS clones, each with a minor modification, lead to a situation where the intricacies of the OS may be hacked - much harder to do on a large number of different licensed valid copies.

    The EULA is pretty clear on this:

    One copy of the software on one machine for use by one person at a time. A backup copy may be made.

    The software is the bootable installed OS, with any personalizations for any users which may have accounts on the machine - you could potentially have 96 user accounts though, each with their own installed software. The backup copy could contain all the accounts and all the installed software.

    The difference between "the software" and the installation media is the inclusion of the product key activation.

    You can also keep your installation media, and a backup of that (i.e. a sysprepped unactivated image of the software).
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