Replacing hard drive in a Lenovo PC

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So, I caved in a few months back and bought my first store-built computer in almost 20 years. It was this deal. I'm now thinking about upgrading it a bit. I'm using it as an HTPC and want to give it a TV tuner card, more RAM, and I want to throw in an SSD as the primary drive and a 3TB drive as a secondary. Unfortunately, I've hit my first problem. How does one go about swapping an SSD into this box? I've always had a full version of Windows available anytime I've done an upgrade and that's not the case this time. Lenovo says that you can go in and create a "restore disc" for your computer since they don't bother to include one. I followed their directions and there is NO option to create a disc that will take you back to factory conditions. There IS an option to make a backup of your current configuration, but since I have music and movies and things on the hard drive, it says it will take 49 DVD's to get the job done. That's obviously not an acceptable solution and I'm here looking for ideas.

My media folder is about 150GB and I have an external drive with plenty of space to hold it. I could always move that stuff to the external, use Lenovo's software to restore the machine to factory status, and clone the drive to the new SSD......but that seems tedious to say the least.

My preferred option would be to simply put in the new drive, install a clean copy of the OS, and go from there. Is that possible with the setup I have here? I can't seem to find any sort of serial number or registration number or anything like that. I downloaded an ISO of the current OS last night, so if I can find that number that should be a reasonable option. Right?

Any thoughts anyone has would be greatly appreciated.

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How to create a recovery disk

click
Start → All Programs →LenovoLenovo Rescue System
.
After starting Rescue System, click Create Recovery Disc
to create a bootable recovery disc from the current system.
Follow the on-screen prompts to create recovery discs.

But, you can also image the hard drive. Generally you can download free disk image software from the mfr of the new hard drive. Just connect up both hard drives, run the image sw, and then remove the old hd


No option for factory default
Disclaimer

Current system backup takes 50 discs
Disclaimer
Thanks for the quick reply ellory.

As for the Lenovo Recovery System, the option you're referring to doesn't seem to be there for me. I don't have an option to create a recovery disc for the factory default settings. The only option I have on my system creates an image of the current system, which as of right now would take 50 DVD's. See the attached images. I've seen posts in the Lenovo forum that talk about something other than the Lenovo Recovery System (don't remember the name off the top of my head) but I don't have it and can't seem to find a place to download it.

I've read through that thread already and didn't see anything that helped me. Message 2 refers to the User Guide, which is the instructions you posted in your reply, so that didn't help. Everything else in that thread seems to either refer to Win8 or to be just random venting.

you may end up having to call Microsoft to re certify your windows license or something like that.
I don't think its difficult, but whenever my win 7 license breaks because i am moving disks I just use a patch.

I know someone told me to make a backup when I first bought my computer. You might be able to do a backup of just your system and settings. I know there are a few products that offer that. You could also download free windows from a torrent site since you have a valid Microsoft code.

izachpsk8 said:   You could also download free windows from a torrent site since you have a valid Microsoft code.

That's one of the options I've considered. I already have a Win7 Home Premium ISO and I know that I have a valid code.....I just can't find the stupid thing.

In addition to Ellory's suggestion, I would first move all of your media files and user created documents/data to an external hard drive. Then you can make a much smaller image of the hard drive in the PC to an external hard drive ( see my post in this link) for imaging software. Then, restore the image to your new hard drive.



ellory said:   How to create a recovery disk



But, you can also image the hard drive. Generally you can download free disk image software from the mfr of the new hard drive. Just connect up both hard drives, run the image sw, and then remove the old hd

skibum43 said:   In addition to Ellory's suggestion, I would first move all of your media files and user created documents/data to an external hard drive. Then you can make a much smaller image of the hard drive in the PC to an external hard drive ( see my post in this link) for imaging software. Then, restore the image to your new hard drive.

That's happening right now, though it's USB 2.0 so it's a slow process. I'm thinking my best option may be to simply move everything off of this box, use the Lenovo app to restore to factory fresh condition, and clone that image to the new SSD.

You might try this tool.I used either this or one like it (can't remember) to retrieve the product key from the bios on my new computer. Many new computers don't come with the product code stickers anymore. The product code is stored, encrypted, in the bios. Just Google "retrieve win product code" if the above link doesn't work for you.

I'll give that a look when I get home later tonight. Thanks for the link!



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