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Re: Quest: Moving IDE drives between machines

On Fri, 30 Nov 2012 12:06:51 -0800
Kelly Clowers <kelly.clowers@gmail.com> wrote:

> On Fri, Nov 30, 2012 at 10:55 AM, Dennis Wicks <wix@mgssub.com> wrote:
> > Greetings:
> >
> > One of my Linux machines has crashed and root drive or IDE
> > controller is bad.
> >
> > Can I unplug an IDE drive and plug it into another machine?
> > I have a vague recollection that this caused problems back
> > when I was running MS/DOS, but not sure. Is it OK today?
> Now, Windows still has some issues with that (if booting), due to the
> the NT HAL...but even there it should* be possible as long as stay on
> the same brand (Intel/AMD) on relatively modern systems (say, x86-64
> era)
> * I have not tested this. Not responsible if it lets the magic smoke
> out of your computer :-)

Not for some time. Many years ago, I had a triple-boot Windows machine,
and moved the drives into new hardware:

NT4.0 complained of a non-working network card, fixed by a new driver.
Apart from that, it didn't even notice that it had a new home.

Win98 asked for its CD and rebooted about a dozen times, but eventually
staggered to its feet and ran reliably.

XP got reinstalled. Nothing at all could I do to get it running again.
It was a retail version, there was no license issue, it had just
committed itself so thoroughly to the initial hardware that it would
not boot at all. 

I'd guess that nothing since XP will boot into new hardware. It does
take a bit of effort to design a boot process that will check for new
hardware and still manage to boot into wherever it finds itself. Once
Microsoft had committed to requiring reactivation if more than very
small hardware changes had been made, presumably it made no sense to
continue this effort.

OEM Windows versions, if anyone isn't aware of this, are tied to the
computer they are sold with, and the license does not permit
reinstalling into a different one (or virtualising, usually). If the
motherboard dies and the model is no longer on sale, the OS is dead as
well. For servers, you buy retail, and preferably virtualise. Restoring
an image backup of a base OS to different hardware is a real pain the
the rear.


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