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Transfering files from one hard drive to another


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#1 monkeydog

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Posted 16 June 2011 - 07:29 PM

Hello all. My Mom has an HP compac presario lap top and the motherboard has gone bad. She has some data on that computer that she needs to recover. I'm wondering if I can transfer it to my computer and then to a flash drive.

I have a desktop I built with an amd 965 black edition, a western digital 500 gig caviar black hard drive and a gigabyte 870A-UD3 motherboard. What I'm wondering is can I take the hard drive out of her lap top and simply connect it to the external sata port on my desktop and be able to view the data on it and then transfer to a flashdrive. Or would I have to set it up as a slave to mine (if it is even compatable).

I really appreciate any thoughts y'all have on this!

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#2 MrBruce1959

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Posted 16 June 2011 - 08:25 PM

One of the things you can do is download UBUNTU Linux Live CD and boot to that disk, have your USB flash drive in the USB port and transfer the files to the flash drive.

You do not need to install UBUNTU, the disk acts like a stand alone operating system, choose use UBUNTU without installing, then navigate the menus until you see your hard drive, you should be able to access all the folders and files that are on your hard drive, transfer them to the flash drive, which should also be visible.

This also allows you to try UBUNTU without installing it, if you like the looks and feel of it, you can install it on a good hard drive if you so desire.

Here is a link to the ISO image for UBUNTU Live CD, use an image burning software to burn the ISO image to a CD-R disk.

You will note that the link below also explains what a LIVE CD is used for:

LiveCD sessions are good to:
•give a 'demo' session on a machine before installing or upgrading ◦checks hardware works as expected

check the look & feel of the distro


•repair or preparation for awkward installations ◦
repair/replace/install grub perhaps after (re)installing Windows


fix Windows problems on a machine that doesn't have a dual-boot


anti-virus problems on a Windows system


data recovery


resizing partitions to give Ubuntu more (or less) room


adding a new partition(s) to your hard-drive for other distros or for a new Windows


•preparing a machine for installing Ubuntu, if you are shy of using default or automatic settings or if the hardware is too unique or awkward
•'showing off' Ubuntu to people on their own machine
•using on a random computer where access is limited
•a familiar desktop environment on an unfamiliar machine

safely using a computer which seems to have poor security or lacks privacy. This is particularly good if you have a Usb stick or something to save your data and settings on


https://help.ubuntu.com/community/LiveCD

Bruce.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 16 June 2011 - 08:41 PM.

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#3 monkeydog

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 04:54 AM

Thanks Bruce. Let me make sure I understand everything correctly...I run the ubuntu live cd on my good desk top pc. Then I connect the hard drive from the dead laptop into my external sata port on my desktop. Now I can read the files on the laptops' harddrive just like on any other storage device and transfer them to a flash drive?

I am running windows 7 on my desktop and have no experience with linux, so I am curious, what is the main advantage to doing this with the ubuntu cd as opposed to doing it through windows? Also, If there was any malware on the laptop hard drive, what are the chances that it would infect my clean desktop machine during this process?

Thanks!

#4 Drovers Dog

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 06:15 AM

Is the Laptop HDD Sata or IDE? that is very important.

Ray
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#5 MrBruce1959

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 12:13 PM

I apologize for a slight error on my part, I was under the assumption the hard drive was bad, not the motherboard. <_<

Since you mentioned your external SATA port, we can assume your hard drive is a SATA hard drive.

You can connect the SATA power connector and the SATA data port to your desktop computer and make sure you do not boot to that drive for now, boot to your usual hard drive.

Once the computer is booted up, run a virus scan on the laptop hard drive first to make sure it is clean of any viruses, then once the scan is complete, you can transfer the files to either your hard drive or the flash drive.

If you use the Live CD as I instructed earlier, there may be, but no guarantees from me, a lesser chance of infecting your computer. I say this because most viruses are usually geared towards Windows based operating systems and have no effect on Linux based distros.

Again, sorry for my misunderstanding in my original reply to you.

Bruce.
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#6 monkeydog

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 04:33 PM

Allright, I think I've got it. Let me run through this again just to make sure. I shut down my desktop, hook up the HDD from the laptop. Now I boot my desktop like normal. As long as I dont make any changes in the boot order, the computer will boot to my normal hard drive, correct?

At this point, if I insert the Live CD and run it, I will be able to find the laptops HDD somewhere in the menus and can then transfer from it?

Will I be able to access and run my anti virus software while using the LiveCD, or would I have to do that while still in windows?

I really appreciate the help. On a side note, I'm looking forward to trying the Ubuntu. I've never had any experience with Linux, but have been wanting to check it out, so this is a perfect opportunity. I understand from the link you provided that if I choose the option to use Ubuntu without installing, when I'm done all I have to do is shut down the computer and then when I reboot everything will be back to normal with my windows 7. Is that correct?

Thanks again Bruce, I will be doing all this tomorrow night or sunday and will let you know how everything goes!

#7 MrBruce1959

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Posted 17 June 2011 - 07:34 PM

NOTE: my answers to you will be in bold type like this. Bruce.

Allright, I think I've got it. Let me run through this again just to make sure. I shut down my desktop, hook up the HDD from the laptop. Now I boot my desktop like normal. As long as I dont make any changes in the boot order, the computer will boot to my normal hard drive, correct?

Yes


At this point, if I insert the Live CD and run it, I will be able to find the laptops HDD somewhere in the menus and can then transfer from it?

If you boot from your original hard drive, you will not have any need to load the UBUNTU disk.
The purpose of this disk would be to boot from it and not your hard drive.
The Live CD contains a boot-able Linux operating system called UBUNTU, this means the CD disk loads on your computer system just as if it was actually loading from a hard drive.


Will I be able to access and run my anti virus software while using the LiveCD, or would I have to do that while still in windows?

While you are booted from the Live CD, you have access to your entire computer, including the Internet, using the built in Fire Fox Browser, you can do a live on-line scan of your system if you wish to, there are on-line scanners that will work with Linux operation systems.
I suggest for piece of mind and making things easier for you until you learn more about Linux, you boot to your usual SATA0 hard drive of your computer system, while the laptop drive is designated as the SATA1 hard drive, SATA0 is usually the first boot device on SATA hard drive systems and the SLAVE drive is usually designated SATA1. Make sure what I just stated is correct for your system, I would hate it if your system labels the drives SATA1 and SATA2 and you accidentally boot to the laptop's hard drive first.
Double check the main BIOS screen for the hard drive setup, this is NOT to be confused with the BOOT order menu, where you would choose which drive boots first. Once you know which drive is which, now you can double check the BOOT menu to be sure your original hard drive boots first.
Once booted to Windows 7, run your Anti-Virus scanner program and check mark or choose the drive from the laptop as one of the drives checked for Viruses during this scan.


I really appreciate the help. On a side note, I'm looking forward to trying the Ubuntu. I've never had any experience with Linux, but have been wanting to check it out, so this is a perfect opportunity. I understand from the link you provided that if I choose the option to use Ubuntu without installing, when I'm done all I have to do is shut down the computer and then when I reboot everything will be back to normal with my windows 7. Is that correct?

Yes, you can boot from the UBUNTU disk while it is in your optical drive (DVD/CD drive) if you choose the option to 'try UBUNTU without making changes to your system' the UBUNTU OS will load on your desktop and act like a normal installation, you can explore the OS and even access the Internet and visit web sites all from running the OS just from the CD disk, when you are finished with it, you can look in the upper right corner of your screen and you will see a power icon, click this and choose shut down the computer or restart, remove the CD and when your system restarts or when you turn it on again, Windows 7 will boot and no signs of UNBUNTU will be on your system.
If you choose to install it, you can choose to dual boot with Windows 7 or putting it on a separate hard drive.

Here is more details about what you can do:

Other Ways to Try Ubuntu

LiveCDs are designed for people that want to use Ubuntu on a computer for a few hours. If you want to carry a LiveCD around with you, a persistent image lets you customise your live session. If you want to use Ubuntu on a computer for a few weeks or months, Wubi lets you install Ubuntu inside Windows. If you want to use Linux on a computer permanently, dual-booting lets you install Window and Ubuntu (or which-ever distro) side-by-side on the same computer.

Because Wubi needs Windows and Ubuntu to co-operate, you have to deal with all the problems of both systems. For example, it's not easy to completely uninstall Wubi. An experienced linux user or someone with considerable technical knowledge about Windows might find it better to try Wubi in some certain circumstances where dual-booting is infeasible or inadvisable. See the Wubi guide for more information about Wubi, particularly how to uninstall it cleanly.

Dual-booting can be daunting at first, but tends to work better once you've got it set up. This allows Window & Ubuntu to work without relying on the other for anything, except the boot-loader. As you get more comfortable with Ubuntu, you can just forget about your Windows partition. Reinstalling Windows is quite tricky, so it's best to leave your Windows partition in place unless you're absolutely sure you'll never use Windows again.


Thanks again Bruce, I will be doing all this tomorrow night or sunday and will let you know how everything goes!


My answers to you are above in bold type.

You are most welcome for my time. :thumbup2:

Bruce.

Edit: fixed a few typos. Bruce.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 17 June 2011 - 07:46 PM.

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#8 monkeydog

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Posted 21 June 2011 - 07:41 PM

Wanted to let you know how it all worked out. Had some problems. I hooked the hard drive up to my computer, double checked with my motherboard manual to make sure I had it right. According to my mobo manual I must configure the bios, only problem was I could not get the computer to post so I could access the bios. When I turned it on, I would get a series of beeps indicating motherboard error. tried several times and alwys same thing.

My son brought me a usb to atp bridge that he uses at work to do this same thing. so we plugged everything up and I was able to find the contents of the laptops hard drive. Had problems opening some files though. some would open right up, others would freeze up. Same with trying to copy files over to the flash drive.

Went to control panel and it told me that there was a problem with drivers for the bridge, never could get it resolved. The laptop had vista on it and my machine has windows 7. My son says that they often have troubles at work trying to get certain files off of vista and onto 7. He says he can hook a hard drive up with xp and retrieve files no problem, same with 7.

At this point my mom said she would just take it down to the local shop and let them do it. They assure her that they can do it for $50. Earlier today I remembered that my daughters computer still has vista on it and we should have tried hooking the bridge up on her computer. That way we would be transfering from vista to vista and everything might have worked better?

Anyways, thanks for al the help, wish I had better news to report. Guess things just go that way sometimes. Thanks again and y'al have a wonderful day!

#9 MrBruce1959

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 05:09 AM

Thanks for the update and sorry to see you going through so many problems.

Sadly, that is just the way things are with electronics and it will always be that way, because we have come to rely on them so much in everyday life, plus the fact that we add more and more features to such devices, there is more and more things that can go wrong with them.

Computers are wonderful devices, what would we do without them?

But now we have to look at the positive side of it, you may have ran into problems, but you still have some new experiences and knowledge under your belt. :wink:

Because you had to take the problem to a professional to resolve it, please do not feel like you failed to resolve it yourself, you did accomplish the task of getting a few files off of the hard drive, which may also be in the process of failing.

The laptop in question failed do to some internal error, that is not to say that the hard drive was not the original cause of this failure.

If the controller board on the hard drive was part of the failure, a shop that specializes in data recovery usually has a spare controller board handy that they switch out with the original that allows the hard drive to function again long enough to retrieve the data on the disks.

That is not always something the casual home computer user would have at their disposal and it's not always the case that one board would automatically play nicely with a drive it is attached too.

Bruce.
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