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  1.    02 Sep 2017 #1
    Join Date : Jan 2017
    Posts : 38
    W10/Arch linux (dual boot)

    How to move Windows 10 from OLD desktop to NEW laptop


    so i was thinking installing this Best free backup software for Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 8, Windows 7, etc - EaseUS Todo Backup Free

    to cloning my entire OLD Desktop HDD to the NEW laptop HDD and then putting my laptop HDD back inside and then let windows auto configure it self is that ok or do i need to do some else or more


    NOTE old HHD is 500GB while new HDD is 1TB
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    02 Sep 2017 #2
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,325
    Windows 10 Pro

    There are two obstacles that you might face:

    UEFI Firmware v. legacy BIOS. Legacy BIOS uses MBR partitioning for the drive and an active partition to boot from. UEFI uses GPT partitioning for the drive and boots from an EFI System Partition that, in most cases must be formatted as FAT32. Most UEFI computers have settings in the UEFI Firmware (BIOS) to allow booting either in legacy BIOS or CSM mode. CSM is just a different term for legacy BIOS emulation. So - as long as you are moving from UEFI to UEFI - or moving from legacy BIOS to legacy BIOS or to UEFI set to boot in legacy BIOS or CSM mode you will be OK for that. You can convert a legacy BIOS installation to GPT partitioning and manually create the EFI System Partition so it would boot in UEFI mode if you wanted to do that.

    The second obstacle is the SATA disk controller mode. There are three basic modes: IDE, AHCI, and RAID. In a single drive system the most efficient controller mode is AHCI. You old computer may very well be set to IDE mode. These settings are in BIOS (or UEFI firmware) settings. In order to change modes you must first delete the IDE ATA/ATAPI Controller drive from Device Manager. Then you restart the computer and enter BIOS or UEFI setup, change the SATA controller mode to AHCI, then reboot the computer. If you don't delete the controller driver first from device manager, Windows will just hang during the loading process.

    If you have those two things set up in advance, cloning an existing Windows 10 installation to a new computer will usually work. Windows 10 will pick up the new hardware and install the drivers for it. If the new computer comes with the same version of Windows 10 as the old computer, Home or Pro, then activation should pick up the license for the new computer and activate itself. If there is no Windows license existing for the new computer, or the versions of Windows do not match, then you need to set up in advance to transfer the license from the old computer to the new computer through a Microsoft Account:
    https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/20530

    We like to use Macrium Reflect Free to do our imaging and cloning:
    Macrium Software | Your Image is Everything

    I've had personal experience with moving Windows between computers. My daughter's laptop needed to go back to ASUS for warranty repair. We moved Windows 10 from her ASUS laptop to a Gateway laptop we keep for a spare. Completely different hardware. Then when her ASUS was returned, we moved the same Windows 10 back to her ASUS computer.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  3.    02 Sep 2017 #3
    Join Date : Oct 2014
    New Jersey
    Posts : 1,386
    Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

    Didn`t the laptop come with W10 installed ?
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  4.    03 Sep 2017 #4
    Join Date : Jan 2017
    Posts : 38
    W10/Arch linux (dual boot)
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by AddRAM View Post
    Didn`t the laptop come with W10 installed ?
    no my laptop came with Ubuntu 16.04 (now i am using Arch Linux)
    i just want to use the windows install for some games every once in a while (it's not really essential for getting work done)


    Quote Originally Posted by NavyLCDR View Post
    There are two obstacles that you might face:
    The second obstacle is the SATA disk controller mode
    no my sata runs in ACHI mode so i am fine

    Quote Originally Posted by NavyLCDR View Post
    There are two obstacles that you might face:

    UEFI Firmware v. legacy BIOS
    it is EUFI so i should be fine
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    03 Sep 2017 #5
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    A Finnish expat in Germany
    Posts : 12,939
    Windows 10 Pro

    I am fully prepared to get quite a few objecting opinions from esteemed fellow senior geeks to this but although all major imaging and cloning software can do what you want to accomplish, I wholeheartedly recommend forgetting them.

    The easiest, painless, fast and 100% working solution to clone Windows 10 to another machine is simply to capture the Windows image to an install.wim file, then make an ISO based on it and install it on the new machine. You do not have to think the size of the source and target drive, you do not have to think partition system on them, you just go through an extremely simple process to capture Windows image and install it on a new PC. Windows 10 is extremely good in adapting to different hardware, that will not be an issue.

    See this tutorial: Create Windows 10 ISO image from Existing Installation Windows 10 Installation Upgrade Tutorials

    In above mentioned tutorial's Part Four you'll find instructions on capturing the Windows image, and in Part Five on how to make an ISO image based on that captured image. Everything will be captured, from user profiles to installed software and user data. To make process faster and generated install.wim file smaller, it is recommended (but not obligatory) to first empty all user profile folders by backing up user personal data (docs, pics, music etc.) to another drive, capture install.wim, make an ISO, install on new PC, then restore backed up user data to new PC.

    Use Rufus to create install media from your custom ISO to bypass FAT32 4 GB file size limit using highlighted settings:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This is my chosen method to clone Windows 10 to another machine, far simpler than restoring images on dissimilar hardware.

    Kari
    Last edited by Kari; 03 Sep 2017 at 16:00. Reason: Typos
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  6.    04 Sep 2017 #6
    Join Date : Dec 2015
    California, USA
    Posts : 147
    Windows 10 Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    I am fully prepared to get quite a few objecting opinions from esteemed fellow senior geeks to this but although all major imaging and cloning software can do what you want to accomplish, I wholeheartedly recommend forgetting them.

    The easiest, painless, fast and 100% working solution to clone Windows 10 to another machine is simply to capture the Windows image to an install.wim file, then make an ISO based on it and install it on the new machine. You do not have to think the size of the source and target drive, you do not have to think partition system on them, you just go through an extremely simple process to capture Windows image and install it on a new PC. Windows 10 is extremely good in adapting to different hardware, that will not be an issue.

    See this tutorial: Create Windows 10 ISO image from Existing Installation Windows 10 Installation Upgrade Tutorials

    In above mentioned tutorial's Part Four you'll find instructions on capturing the Windows image, and in Part Five on how to make an ISO image based on that captured image. Everything will be captured, from user profiles to installed software and user data. To make process faster and generated install.wim file smaller, it is recommended (but not obligatory) to first empty all user profile folders by backing up user personal data (docs, pics, music etc.) to another drive, capture install.wim, make an ISO, install on new PC, then restore backed up user data to new PC.

    Use Rufus to create install media from your custom ISO to bypass FAT32 4 GB file size limit using highlighted settings:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	image.png 
Views:	71 
Size:	161.1 KB 
ID:	151775

    This is my chosen method to clone Windows 10 to another machine, far simpler than restoring images on dissimilar hardware.

    Kari
    Kari,

    Thanks for this post and the link to that amazing tutorial. Can this method be used to clone a virtual machine install to a physical machine install, or a physical machine install to a virtual machine install?
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  7.    05 Sep 2017 #7
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    A Finnish expat in Germany
    Posts : 12,939
    Windows 10 Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by x509 View Post
    Kari,

    Thanks for this post and the link to that amazing tutorial. Can this method be used to clone a virtual machine install to a physical machine install, or a physical machine install to a virtual machine install?
    When you capture Windows image to a custom install.wim file and then create an ISO based on it, or for instance simply replace original install.wim with your custom one on an already existing USB install media for same Windows version, it's a totally normal Windows 10 install media apart the fact that it already contains software and user profiles.

    Image can be captured from any machine, physical or virtual.

    It can be used to install Windows 10 on any hardware or virtual machine capable of running Windows 10, regardless of if BIOS / MBR or UEFI / GPT.

    The installation using this custom ISO will of course take somewhat longer than using a standard original Windows 10 ISO for two reasons: first, the ISO already contains user profiles and software that has to be installed, and second because Windows setup needs to replace driver data ISO contains with actual drivers. Luckily, Windows 10 is extremely good in doing this.

    Usually when creating custom ISO images you would clean install Windows, boot to Audit Mode from OOBE region selection before creating any user profiles, customize Windows and finally run Sysprep with generalizing switch to make image hardware independent, containing only native Windows drivers. However, as an existing Windows installation can't be generalized without removing all UWP apps and even then it most often fails, this, the ISO containing drivers from one installation which need to replaced when installed on another hardware, this is the only con in the method. But, as I mentioned, Windows 10 is good in doing this. Personally I have had no issues transferring Windows 10 using ISO with install.wim captured from source machine.

    Kari
    Last edited by Kari; 05 Sep 2017 at 01:22. Reason: Several typos
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  8.    09 Sep 2017 #8
    Join Date : Jun 2017
    Posts : 20
    Windows 10

    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    When you capture Windows image to a custom install.wim file and then create an ISO based on it, or for instance simply replace original install.wim with your custom one on an already existing USB install media for same Windows version, it's a totally normal Windows 10 install media apart the fact that it already contains software and user profiles.
    Image can be captured from any machine, physical or virtual.
    It can be used to install Windows 10 on any hardware or virtual machine capable of running Windows 10, regardless of if BIOS / MBR or UEFI / GPT.
    The installation using this custom ISO will of course take somewhat longer than using a standard original Windows 10 ISO for two reasons: first, the ISO already contains user profiles and software that has to be installed, and second because Windows setup needs to replace driver data ISO contains with actual drivers. Luckily, Windows 10 is extremely good in doing this.
    Interesting idea @Kari... I am considering testing this out whenever the opportunity next arises but had some questions...

    1) In order to get around the 3rd-party drivers contained in the initial captured install.wim file from the source PC as you mentioned, could one use the dism command to remove all 3rd-party drivers prior from the install.wim?

    2) Give or take, how many times have you used this method in the past and what is your success rate?

    3) Would this work on a Windows 8.1 PC going to another Win 8.1 PC as well?

    4) I would presume the install.wim would be very large (considering you are saving applications + user data), would the install.wim still be able to fit in a Fat32 formated USB drive? I see you recommended using Rufus to format the partition to NTFS, but most new UEFI based PC can't boot from NTFS via USB right?

    Thnx in advance...
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  9.    10 Sep 2017 #9
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    A Finnish expat in Germany
    Posts : 12,939
    Windows 10 Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by KabyBlue View Post
    1) In order to get around the 3rd-party drivers contained in the initial captured install.wim file from the source PC as you mentioned, could one use the dism command to remove all 3rd-party drivers prior from the install.wim?
    Yes. You could also use Device Manager to uninstall all third party drivers, shut down and capture the image, However, this is quite unnecessary. Windows 10 is as I have mentioned really good in replacing drivers when deployed / installed on differencing hardware.


    Quote Originally Posted by KabyBlue View Post
    2) Give or take, how many times have you used this method in the past and what is your success rate?
    With Windows 10, I've not done it as often as my earlier posts might accidentally indicate. With earlier versions of Windows (7, 8 & 8.1) I've done this for sure 50+ times.

    Not sure what to answer, but with Windows 10 it must be at least 10 times, no more than 20 times since the release of first beta build of Windows 10 in October 2014.

    It has never failed for me.


    Quote Originally Posted by KabyBlue View Post
    3) Would this work on a Windows 8.1 PC going to another Win 8.1 PC as well?
    Yes, this works with Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 even better because those operating systems can be generalized (made hardware independent) after the installation without issues.

    In 7, 8 & 8.1, just run Sysprep first with following command:

    %windir%\system32\sysprep\sysprep.exe /generalize /oobe /shutdown

    That generalizes Windows image, then shuts down. Now capture the image, replace the install.wim on ISO for the same Windows version with your custom install.wim, burn the ISO to a DVD or USB flash drive and install on different hardware.

    In Windows 10, UWP apps will be provisioned in a way that makes generalizing almost impossible. Luckily, W10 is so good in adapting to different hardware.


    Quote Originally Posted by KabyBlue View Post
    4) I would presume the install.wim would be very large (considering you are saving applications + user data), would the install.wim still be able to fit in a Fat32 formated USB drive? I see you recommended using Rufus to format the partition to NTFS, but most new UEFI based PC can't boot from NTFS via USB right?
    A bit strange fact but theoretically there's absolutely no reason why UEFI computers can't be booted from NTFS. However, some (in fact most) hardware manufacturers still include this restriction to their UEFI. Rufus bypasses this artificial restriction by creating a small FAT32 partition on USB drive to boot a UEFI machine, which then gives the control to an NTFS partition containing Windows install image with your custom install.wim file.

    A quote from https://github.com/pbatard/uefi-ntfs:

    As an aside, and because there appears to exist a lot of innacurate information about this on the Internet, it needs to be stressed out that there is absolutely nothing in the UEFI specifications that actually forces the use of FAT32 for UEFI boot. On the contrary, UEFI will happily boot from ANY file system, as long as your firmware has a driver for it. As such, it is only the choice of system manufacturers, who tend to only include a driver for FAT32, that limits the default boot capabilities of UEFI, and that leads many to erroneously believe that only FAT32 can be used for UEFI boot.
    Rufus (download: Rufus, the creator of it @Akeo is our member) makes this automatically. You only need to take care of the highlighted settings, set Partition scheme to MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI-CSM, and set File System to NTFS:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This will create a USB flash drive with NTFS file system to allow you to add as big files as you want to / need to, creating a small FAT32 partition to take care of the boot phase. My own current custom install.wim is over 14 GB, I have had no issues in using that install media on devices not accepting NTFS boot.

    Kari
    Last edited by Kari; 10 Sep 2017 at 06:48.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  10.    12 Sep 2017 #10
    Join Date : Jun 2017
    Posts : 20
    Windows 10

    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    Yes, this works with Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 even better because those operating systems can be generalized (made hardware independent) after the installation without issues.
    In 7, 8 & 8.1, just run Sysprep first with following command:
    %windir%\system32\sysprep\sysprep.exe /generalize /oobe /shutdown

    That generalizes Windows image, then shuts down. Now capture the image, replace the install.wim on ISO for the same Windows version with your custom install.wim, burn the ISO to a DVD or USB flash drive and install on different hardware.
    In Windows 10, UWP apps will be provisioned in a way that makes generalizing almost impossible. Luckily, W10 is so good in adapting to different hardware.
    What about the SID (security identifiers) issue that is brought up on some articles in regards to multiple PCs having the same SID on a network? Also, do you recommend not running sysprep even though some articles online state that it is indeed possible to run sysprep on a Win 10 machine (except on a PC that had an OS version upgrade)?

    Using Sysprep in Windows 10

    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    Rufus (download: Rufus, the creator of it @Akeo is our member) makes this automatically. You only need to take care of the highlighted settings, set Partition scheme to MBR partition scheme for BIOS or UEFI-CSM, and set File System to NTFS:
    This will create a USB flash drive with NTFS file system to allow you to add as big files as you want to / need to, creating a small FAT32 partition to take care of the boot phase. My own current custom install.wim is over 14 GB, I have had no issues in using that install media on devices not accepting NTFS boot.
    I am familiar with Rufus. It's the best app IMO for the creation of a bootable ISO. They only concern I have is if I have to create the USB using an MBR partition, I would not be able to install a GPT based UEFI Windows 10. Could I convert the partition to UEFI GPT at a later time?

    Thnx for the responce in advance...
    Last edited by KabyBlue; 12 Sep 2017 at 09:07.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 
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