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  1. #1
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    Building new system w/ new Windows but keeping Old HDD w/ Old Windows

    I'm building my first PC and have a question about what to do about my Windows install. The only thing I'm keeping from my previous PC (Dell Inspiron XPS 710 - a BTX system) are the 4 hard drives (3 500GB and 1 smaller that the OS was installed on). I've read that anytime you upgrade the motherboard it is important to do a fresh windows install, and I intend to do that, but I wouldn't be able to do that fresh install until I get it all put together and boot it up. The original motherboard went out, which is what prompted the build.

    I had Windows Vista, and I'm upgrading to Windows 8.1 (on an ATX motherboard). Can I just put it all together, boot it up like normal to Windows Vista, then install 8.1 over it? Or are there other steps involved? Thank you.

  2. #2
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    Building new system w/ new Windows but keeping Old HDD w/ Old Windows

    According to Microsoft, you can only upgrade to 8.1 directly from Win 7. For Vista, you have to install 8.0 first, install all the Windows updates, then download 8.1 from the Windows store. You'll need to install from the 8.0 DVD, not from Vista.

    I bought the "Builder" OEM version from Newegg. I got it on sale, but I think the normal price is $99.99. The 8.1 update is free.

  3. #3
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    May 2015
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    Building new system w/ new Windows but keeping Old HDD w/ Old Windows

    I purchased Windows 8.1 64 Bit OEM from Newegg for that same price. Will this not work for me? I have the disk and a product key..

    So I've found that my system will not boot to my old Windows Vista. Can anyone help me troubleshoot this? Trying to boot like normal gives me the blue screen of death and restarts. Launching startup repair didn't do anything, it just kept checking and never found anything.

    I also tried booting from my Windows 8.1 disk. I can't get it to work.. It told me a few different things:

    When I try to do the install, I selected the normal option which saves old files from my hard drive, instead of the custom which wipes my hard drive out and starts fresh, and it told me to restart my computer using my older version that's already installed.

    When I tried to troubleshoot, I can refresh, reset, or choose advanced options. Choosing refresh, it states "the drive where windows is installed is locked. Unlocked the drive and try again." I don't want to reset because it wipes everything.

    Under advanced options, I can use system restore, system image recovery, startup repair, or command prompt. System restore says "To use system restore, you must specify which windows installation to restore. Restart this computer, select an operating system, and then select System Restore." System image recovery can't find a system image. Startup repair just restarted my PC without even doing anything.

    I pulled my 4 hard drives from my 5+ year old Dell Inspiron XPS 710 BTX system, and I'm using them with my new ATX setup. Intel i5-4670k CPU, MSI Z87-45 Gaming motherboard.

  4. #4
    Junior Member
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    May 2015
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    Peru
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    Building new system w/ new Windows but keeping Old HDD w/ Old Windows

    Partial success - found my vista cd and reinstalled vista. Got it to boot up and it recognizes all my new components. Now to figure out how to get windows 8.1 to work..

  5. #5

    Building new system w/ new Windows but keeping Old HDD w/ Old Windows

    Here's the page that says you can't upgrade directly from Vista:

    http://www.microsoftstore.com/store/...ctID.288401200

    Newegg should have posted this warning on the product page. To avoid having to return your disc and get an 8.0 disc, I would call Microsoft Support and ask them for advice. Maybe they can give you a downloadable 8.0 .iso image you can burn to a DVD. If not, you'll have to go back to Newegg.

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