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transfering drivers from old computer


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#1 thesand4

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 12:39 PM

I happen to have a laptop and that laptop has a hard drive which still runs windows but SMART says it's failing, and about 15 of its 40 gigabytes doesn't work, and to top it off, many windows components (like application layer gateway) fail and it can't do certain things (like adobe acrobat and matlab won't work no matter how many times I reinstall them, even though I have cleverly filled up the 15 gigabytes with files which I keep in the bad files directory and of course I don't defragment the hard drive - I essentially filled up the hard drive to the last sector with random junk because apparently utorrent can allocate hard drive space without actually being able to write to or read from those sectors - so I downloaded a bunch of torrents, and then deleted the files that could be read and written to). Needless to say it CAN do certain things, like connect to the internet, which is what I'm doing right now, but I want to replace it.

There's just one problem. The driver disk that came with it has mysteriously vanished. I can install windows XP but there are big problems with it with a new hard drive. For instance, the WiFi doesn't work, for instance when I go to shut down, instead of 3 choices, "stand by", "shut down" and "restart" being available, "stand by" is grayed out so it only lets me shut down and restart. If ONLY hp still had these drivers available that would be great. In addition, some other things are conspicuously different, though some of them may be windows settings that can be changed or things that I don't care about - like when I right click in my computer and go to the hardware tab under system properties, "device manager" is in the MIDDLE between drivers and hardware profiles instead of at the top. As it is, they directed me to hp.com/support and to click on drivers, but you know what? They don't friggin work! It's NOT the same as putting that disk in. The wifi doesn't work, nor does the stand by function, and device manager still reports none of the things that are unidentified as becoming identified, and on top of that, it installs a bunch of junk into specific folders it asks me for (It puts them in the root directory by default but I at least put them in program files), but the original disk on the original computer did no such thing, it just installed the drivers into system32 as it was supposed to.

I searched the internet for drivers to these devices - and SO many people have SOME of them and they all say "file not found" when you actually try to download them. Most of them were originally upped in 2002 and they all redirect to the manufacturer's site instead of hosting the friggin' 50 kilobyte files themselves. But they still CLAIM to have them.

Anyway, I'm including two pictures. One is of the device manager with the new hard drive, showing all the unrecognized things under "Other devices". The other one is the device manager in the failing hard drive.

My question is this: Is there any way to get the drivers off the old cruddy computer and install them on the new one? Sure, it tells me the ".sys" files in the system32 and system32/drivers directories that are being used as drivers when I click on drivers under device information in device manager, but I know there's junk in the "inf" directory as well as junk in the registry it is NOT telling me about. Is there some program out there for this purpose, that is taking some kind of image of the installed drivers for any device in hardware manager and turning it into some form which can be installed in another computer with the same devices which are not currently installed (or rather the same computer but with a different hard drive)? Or maybe every driver in the system32 and system32/drivers directory... There certainly should be such a program since surely I'm not the first one to want to transfer drivers from one HD to another.

Or maybe someone else has a less all-in-one-convenient solution for getting the drivers off the old and onto the new?

There's one thing I'd like to note though. Under network adaptors on the old one, there are 2 things that are disabled. Those are components of a virus. I couldn't get rid of all the components of the virus - but I came up with a novel solution, to let it be there but disabled. Kind of a vaccine, a weakened version of it to prevent from getting the real thing again. So actually I would rather not carry that over even if it is a vaccine because it would kind of make me uneasy a bit...

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Edited by thesand4, 06 November 2009 - 12:48 PM.


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#2 ThunderZ

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 12:52 PM

I have to ask. What leads you to believe that those two devices are\were from a virus? A quick Google shows them to be very likely legit drivers.

Instead of digging back through your post, please, what is the make and model of the machine.

#3 hamluis

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 01:14 PM

FWIW: You cannot "transfer" installed drivers/programs from one system to any other media...unless you are doing something greater such as copying the partition/hard drive.

<<There certainly should be such a program since surely I'm not the first one to want to transfer drivers from one HD to another.>>

Many people seem to realize that installing a program/driver...involves more than just copying files. There are settings, registry entries, and file entries involved...which are only duplicated as they exist...by cloning or using backup software to capture the system partition. There's plenty of software around that will backup or copy partitions/drives.

Louis

#4 thesand4

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 02:54 PM

Well, z, it's a paviliion ze5730us.

What lead me to believe they were from a virus? Well, it was almost a year ago, but I seem to recall the rogue antispyware program that came with it as a less than subtle clue. The two things shown there weren't there before, they were there afterwards, they ran tasks that weren't there before, global startup tasks according to hijackthis, I was quite familiar with every single process that should have been there in the task manager so I'm very aware of these things when suddenly there are a couple new ones that were never there before, especially when they claim to be system tasks and when they were never there before. And the viral tasks were run by those two components. And I looked up the files they had listed under "drivers" for those two devices on google or altavista and everyone was saying they were viruses, that it was a hack into the vulnerable legitimate drivers for the wireless lan device. They constitute a trojan downloader for the rogue antispyware program. I was only able to eliminate it and keep it eliminated when I disabled them, and if I was to re-enable them, they would immediately proceed to download the trojan once again, I guarantee it. So that's why I think it's a virus. It is more than a wild superstition from an ignorant boob. It is not up for debate either. Really. It's a virus. Trust me on this.

ham, as I said, I already know there are registry entries as well as files in the windows/inf directory that aren't listed when I click on the show drivers button. I never said it was just files in the system32 and system32/drivers directory. But that not being all that is required of course does not mean it is impossible to do. It certainly means that it would be a nuisance of Herculean proportions to try to do it manually - to find all the driver files, to use regedit to find every occurrence in the registry of every one of those files, to save each of those entries and add them into the other computer, and do whatever else needs to be done - and it's only that last phrase that keeps me from actually doing that. My knowledge of windows is incomplete, and I'll bet there is something more that would need to be done in addition to the registry entries. But my point is that it is NOT fundamentally impossible and so there may be a program out there that DOES it. Copying the entire partition is of course not an option because everything in the "bad files" directory is written to the bad sectors and cannot be read. I could run scandisk - but I don't think it would complete within a human lifetime. It takes a long time to finally decide that each and every individual bad sector is indeed bad and cannot be read, and then takes several minutes to try to read the next 4-kilobyte sector. And even if I did that and copied the instance of windows fully, I would copy along with it all the problems (like its inability to run adobe acrobat or matlab - and search for files or folders makes explorer crash, and there are other problems - windows is plainly damaged in places). So you are saying that you are not aware of the existence of any program which reads all the drivers associated with a particular installed device, finds and copies all entries in the registry and all associated settings and creates, say, an executable file that will install that device in another computer with those settings then. Great. Thank you very much but if it's all the same to you I'll cross my fingers and hope for a comment from someone who gives me the link to such a program.

Edited by thesand4, 06 November 2009 - 03:01 PM.


#5 ThunderZ

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Posted 06 November 2009 - 03:02 PM

HP still provides support for that machine. Depending on the OS. HERE

#6 hamluis

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Posted 07 November 2009 - 01:37 PM

Well...you can use Autoruns to visually see ALL the drivers installed on a system.

But the key concept, IMO, is that they are already installed.

I've not heard of anyone just copying an installed driver or set of driver files...in the same manner that one can copy some Windows files from either CD or other location...and use the copy to supplant a file that is either missing or damaged.

I think of drivers as being programs...when a program has a problem, we don't normally attempt to copy a file (even if accessible) to fix it...we uninstall the program and reinstall it...or install over it, assuming that the good file will replace the bad.

I don't think there's a way to do what you describe...but I've grown accustomed to being wrong about many things :thumbsup:.

Louis

#7 thesand4

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 01:02 AM

Ok, thanks, I guess if anyone has that knowledge or the hypothetical program I want, it's so arcane that I'd never find that person or program.

I tried the drivers on hp's website already. I mentioned that already though of course if you got impatient with the quantity of words I guess you probably skimmed what all I said. But as I said, I was already at that very same page you gave the link to and the "drivers" that were there were NOT the same ones that were on that missing disk because all the devices that were unrecognized before were still unrecognized after I installed ALL the drivers that remotely related to it, the "stand by" function was still disabled, and to top it off, it insisted that it install a bunch of junk to a directory of my choosing (I put it in the program files directory since it was the root directory by default) instead of properly installing drivers into system32. No problem with the hardware, it all still works just fine from the sucky hard drive (that's how I'm connecting to the internet wirelessly RIGHT NOW), but the alleged drivers on that page on hp's site DO NOT WORK.

#8 hamluis

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Posted 13 November 2009 - 10:45 AM

Well...if you gave the right system info...the drivers on that page should be appropriate for that system.

If, in fact, they do not function correctly...something other than drivers would appear to be wrong with your laptop. What that might be, I can't say.

But...since you received a SMART warning re the hard drive...I think I'd go along with that as a primary suspect. I'd say that a failing hard drive may make a system totally disfunctional, which appears to be a possibility...IMO.

Louis




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