Move HDs to a new machine

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Properly this is a Windows 98se question, but I've seen this
tangentially discussed here before, so I thought I might ask:

Can I just move my HD, with a Windows 98 se install, into a new PC?

The old PC:

Compaq Deskpro EN Series
Pentium II 233 MHz

The new PC (yet to be purchased):

Microtel Desktop
AMD Sempron 2200+

I wouldn't really be that big of a deal to reinstall after the HDs are
put into the new machine, but the current installation is still quite
clean, and the new PC does not have a floppy drive.

Thanks for entertaining, if you in fact do, this off-topic question.

Re: Move HDs to a new machine

Grinder wrote:

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I do that sort of thing quite often. One of the drives in this system
boots via Bios menu into Win98FE (not SE). It came from an older Athlon
1GHz system that failed. It now runs (not at this very moment) on this
late model Compaq Presario Pentium.

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Some years ago I moved a drive from a Gateway P-233 to that same Athlon
system above.

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It's not always a piece of cake. The biggest problem is finding hardware
drivers for the hardware in your new machine. Integrated video & sound
need new drivers and many are simply not supported and not available at
all for Win98 and it's necessary to play around and find one that works
from a different Win. Best to go to manufacturers' websites to see what's
available. NDIS has a bug in it for cpu's faster that 2Ghz and needs an
updated version. Plus any other hardware that's different and that you
need. Watch out for Win98 (can't remember for SE) as it can't support
drives over 137GB. If you enjoy that sort of thing, then fine.


Re: Move HDs to a new machine


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& bump it immediately to 200FSb ... take a nForce2 chipset MoBo...

more than 90% chance that will NOT work, even if you delete prior a
transplant (of HD or cloning the system to other HD) the Enum key in
the registry in Safe mode. On the contrary to this; the viceversa way
would probably work /AMD_2_Intel/ with 90% chances or more ...

IMHO , you need a reinstall ! & having a FD drive is sometimes very
usefull, it costs no more than 10$; really not a big money! Mount it!
                         Regards ,  SPAJKY ®
   mail addr. @ my site @
3rd Ann.: - "Tualatin OC-ed / BX-Slot1 / inaudible setup!"

Re: Move HDs to a new machine

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With 98SE this will work.  I just retired a Compaq Deskpro EN, combining its
parts with those of two other computers into a single tower. Now I can boot
W98SE or ME, but that's just a side effect; the SE installation from the
Compaq is the one that I'll keep.  Both OS's went through the following
process on install:

When it boots up for the first time it will go through a long series of
"Found New Hardware" screens, so you need to either have the installation CD
on hand or copy the i386 folder from it to the hard drive before the
transplant so you'll have the cabs.  Expect the machine to frequently need
your manual help finding the files. With Win98SE it does not have to be the
same installation disk you used to install the system; the cabs from any
Win98SE installation disk will work.

This is apparently legal provided the old machine is no longer running that
copy of W98. If it is an OEM installation, you lose the support of the OEM
provider, but you probably haven't had much for a while anyway.

Compaq places the SETUP program for the EN series on the hard disk drive
instead of in a firmware chip.  This will not be a problem for your new
computer, which will ignore it, but if you put another drive in the older
one you'll need to go through some hoops to restore it.


Re: Move HDs to a new machine

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 01:01:58 GMT, Grinder

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yes, if done properly it is certainly do-able.

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1)  Obtain all patches for Win98SE and apply them now, prior
to swapping the drive.

2)  Put a folder on the drive with all the newer drivers
needed, in it.  Mainly you need a "connectivity" driver, the
method to obtain any further drivers.  For example this
could be a network adapter driver, or modem driver, etc.
Doing at least this much makes it easier to get the rest of
the drivers later if you decided to... I suggest you do use
the newest drivers right at first, NOT the old ones that
come on a motherboard CD.  

3)  Uinstall any drivers that apply only to the old system,
as well as any types of hardware monitor software or
"tweaking" apps.  It's not necessary to disable things
loading with MSCONFIG, but it wouldn't hurt either.   In
particular you want all drivers in Add/Remove programs,
uninstalled.  This should be done on the last time you boot
your system, all of them at that point.  If it prompts that
you need to reboot to finish, you dont' have to yet, can
swap the motherboard before doing that.

4)  Go into the registry (run Regedit.exe) and select the
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ENUM] key.  With it highlighted, delete
that entire key.  It is easier to delete the entire key than
going through it and deleting everything but a few items,
BUT it is then _necessary_ to add back a couple of items,
this step can't be skipped for modern (sound cards in
particular) items to work later.  The registry information
that needs added back is this, which is same thing in a
regostry file you can simply copy to the drive before
swapping the board, then merge it anytime after deleting the
"ENUM" key.




"DeviceDesc"="Plug and Play Software Device Enumerator"

As mentioned, all of the above is in this reg file:

5)  Shut off system, swap the drive, boot the new system.
It'll detect a lot of hardware, you'll reboot a few times.
Any drivers you don't have, you can skip for the moment,
coming back to them later if necessary.  Until a certain
point in the redetection (and a reboot later) you will not
have use of the CDROM/DVD/etc drive yet.  This means that if
you had previously inserted the WIn98 disc anytime Windows
needed make OS changes, you should FIRST, prior to swapping
the drive, create a folder on the hard drive and copy the
Win98 CD's "Win98" folder to it.  By doing so you then can
point windows to these files instead of having to provide
the WIn98 disc (while the optical drives aren't functional

Some video drivers (and perhaps sound) may require newer
DirectX version than WIn98 used.  If this is the case,
download the newest DirectX from Microsoft and install it
after swapping the drive into the new system.  You could
install it before the swap, but just as well afterwards,
after a reboot or two.

These steps should pretty much cover the entire swap, at
this point it's similar enough to installing Windows clean,
you simply install the drivers as you would then.  Provided
you have installed the Win98SE patches first and (re)added
the above metioned registry entries, there is no reason to
believe ANY system that could run Win98SE as a fresh
install, won't work afterwards.  It's possible I've
overlooked minor details, but nothing crucial AFAIK... the
above has worked with 100% success rate.

Re: Move HDs to a new machine



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In retrospect, one detail I did overlook is that after the
first reboot or two, it is often necessary to go into Device
Manager, and delete the legacy/generic devices used before
the OS redetected the new devices.  In other words, wherever
there are multiple entries for the same device (type) with
one of them being flagged as problematic, Delete _both_
entries, for all such occurances, then reboot.   At that
point of rebooting, the OS will then redetect only the
proper device.  This step would typically be done after at
least the first reboot or two, and double-checked once it
appears the entire OS migration is complete and you're

Re: Move HDs to a new machine

kony wrote:
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Thanks for the roadmap.

Re: Move HDs to a new machine

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 01:01:58 GMT As Andoids Dreamed Of Electric Sheep

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Yes but you will have to install the news System's mother board
drivers pack.You may also have to do a,"repair install<not hard>",
and you will have to clean up the system anyway as per,

HTH :)

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