Can I move my hard drive from one computer to another without losing data?

by on October 25, 2009

Q: Can I replace the hard drive from my Gateway 4530GZ with the hard drive from my Gateway 4542 without losing any of the data? The 4530 is physically in much better condition except for a recent media failure (hard drive and or Ethernet Controller failure)? Also can I use other parts to upgrade the 4530 such as the RAM? I tried switching out the hard drives but the intended laptop reports “No Operating System” It seems this should be so simple being basically the same laptops?

One Response to “Can I move my hard drive from one computer to another without losing data?”
    Picked as best answer

    Both laptops use the exact same type of RAM. However, there aren’t going to be any free slots to add the RAM from the other laptop into the 4530. If you want to do a RAM upgrade you’ll need to buy new higher capacity sticks of RAM. You can use newegg’s memory finder tool to locate the correct parts:

    If you want to swap drives out you’re going to want to do an operating system reinstall on the drive for best results. As similar as the laptops might seem, the insides are still different enough that windows is going to have a hard time starting up when it’s configured to be running inside a different computer. If you just want to use one of these drives for some extra space, you can just buy an external hard drive enclosure for a few bucks and then you can attach the 2nd drive by USB.