Can I move my old hard drive to my new computer?

Episode 1286 (2:01:19)

Sam from Costa Mesa, CA

Sam says it's time to get a new computer, and wants to know if he can bring along his old hard drive and put it in. His hard drive is pretty new, so can he swap one hard drive out and plug another in and start it up and get working? Leo says that would be nice, but it doesn't work that way. The Windows OS will look for the motherboards and chipsets and if it doesn't find that, it will have issues.

Leo advises deleting all the devices in his old computer and then shut it down. When he swaps out the hard drives, Windows should install all the drivers for the new hardware configuration. He should also make sure he installs all the latest drivers for the new computer. Once he has all that done, it should work. It will be a journey, though. Microsoft will have a hiccup on which computer the operating system is on and if it doesn't see it, he'll have to call Microsoft and explain that to re-register the computer.