External Windows 10 test drive, good idea?


  1. Posts : 73
    Windows 10
       #1

    External Windows 10 test drive, good idea?


    As a Mac technician, I found it very useful to boot from an external macOS test volume, best on an SSD.

    What about trying this for PCs too? I thought I may install Windows 10 on an external SSD on each machine I need to test (since driver incompatibility wouldn’t allow a universal Windows 10 test drive for all machines, if I’m not wrong).

    Installing Windows 10 on an external SSD should be a breeze and would then allow me to test any Windows Machine, such as leaving it running Videos or doing a Benchmark, which I can usually not do with USB tools like Hiren's BootCD etc.

    I heard you can install Windows on an external drive with tools like EaseUS TODO Backup or WinToUSB.

    I'd like to hear ideas on this? Anyone has ever tried this? Is it worth it?
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  2. NavyLCDR's Avatar
    Posts : 13,363
    Windows 10 Pro
       #2

    Yes, I've done it. Not worth it.

    Let's say Windows 10 works just fine on the computer. Then what? Are you just going to keep running Windows 10 from the external SSD? Or let's say it doesn't work. Then what? Are you going to reuse the external SSD for the next computer? But what are you going to do with the computer it didn't work on?

    And, in most cases, if you do the external USB SSD correctly, it can be moved from computer to computer. It can even boot on both legacy BIOS and UEFI machines. My external SSD is a rescue drive, though. Not simply a Windows compatibility tester.
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  3. Posts : 73
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    NavyLCDR said:
    Yes, I've done it. Not worth it.

    Let's say Windows 10 works just fine on the computer. Then what? Are you just going to keep running Windows 10 from the external SSD? Or let's say it doesn't work. Then what? Are you going to reuse the external SSD for the next computer? But what are you going to do with the computer it didn't work on?

    And, in most cases, if you do the external USB SSD correctly, it can be moved from computer to computer. It can even boot on both legacy BIOS and UEFI machines. My external SSD is a rescue drive, though. Not simply a Windows compatibility tester.
    Thanks for your prompt answer.
    Sorry, I don’t get you. What I mean is: if the drive works fine, even if just on this computer, then you’ll be able to stress test the PC (I’m thinking of a laptop or All-in-one) without having to crack it open, such as for example running a benchmark.
    If this worked with other PCs, that would be even better, just like a macOS test drive we use all the time.
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  4. NavyLCDR's Avatar
    Posts : 13,363
    Windows 10 Pro
       #4

    Ok. Stress testing and other troubleshooting, then yes, that would be something it would be useful for.
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  5. Posts : 32,919
    windows 10 professional version 1607 build 14393.969 64 bit
       #5

    To test drives on Windows PC there are multiple options:
    a) use windows > download and install software > run tests
    b) use computer manufacturer firmware installed in a drive partition
    c) use software that tests using DOS
    d) boot to a flash drive that has testing software
    e) boot to Ubuntu / Linux > run software
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