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Repair information on hard drives or hard disks. Hard drives are magnetic data storage devices. They are used in most desktop, laptop, and server due to their low cost and high data density.

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Motherboard died, How to make the hard drive work on an older machine?

The one with the dead motherboard is running windows 7, my older machine uses vista. Can't use the 7 machine to boot up sysprep or anything to make it compatible with the vista hardware. Likewise when they're both installed on the vista machine, the 7 hard drive's OS programs are not compatible to run with the vista OS.

I've tried all I know how to do, but the things I need don't work with vista and are on the 7 hard drive.

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If these are OEM (Brand name computers), then you will need to manually install Windows 7 on the Vista Machine. The computer should be old enough so that Windows 7 contains all the drivers. However, as an anti-piracy measure you cannot simply move a hard drive from one computer into a different computer.

If you have a Windows 7 ISO on a USB or DVD, you can manually install it on the Vista machine using the Product Key sticker found on the bottom of the machine that no longer works.

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To my knowledge you cannot do what you want to do. You have to reinstall the os then all the programs. However if your willing to either spend the money on the newest Acronis software or to find it on a website, they claim to be able to clone the os to a different machine. Although, I havent had any success getting it to work.

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If you have your Win 7 install disc, couldn't he just install Win 7 on the vista machine?


as long as his older machine can support a 64 bit architecture, assuming he still has a license for win 7 .


i've looked around and found how to retrieve the windows 7 license and product keys, and downloaded the OS to the vista hard drive. i'll need to get a flash stick to put it on as the hardware for both computers does not have a DVD writer. can copy some things to the vista hard drive before the reinstall formatting. but is there also a way to get the old files afterwards?


You can make a bootable ubuntu flash drive and use it to boot the computer and click on try ubuntu, dont install it. You can then access your hard drive to get you old files. You will want to do this before installing the new os.




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If you only need the data, you can use a virtual machine running windows 7 on the PC running windows Vista! Windows 7 Virtual Machine

Microsoft installation instructions

VirtualBox (This is what I use)

How to mount drive

OR why not take out the motherboard from the Vista PC and put it in the Windows 7 machine? You can run your vista programs in windows 7 using compatibility mode. and obviously, you can also run your windows 7 programs on windows 7.

how to use compatibility mode

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