You’d think that installing a new hard drive would be a simple thing, well read on.   I have the Windows 7 Ultimate edition installed on my VAIO laptop already, so I decided to use the System Recovery tools that come with the Ulitimate edition (I knew that extra cost of getting the Ulitimate edition would pay off).  Plus I really didn’t want to buy Norton Ghost.  I have disgust for them with their crappy Norton 360 product.

After backing up the entire C: drive on to my 1.5 Tb USB drive using the instructions from here: and few hours later.

I created the backup and the CD to do the recovery.  Then I shutdown the laptop to install the new drive.

Here’s a big tip when changing hardware on a laptop, disconnect the battery.  I don’t know exactly why, but everyone seems to do it.

After getting the back plate off then removing all the screws to get the drive bay out of the laptop, I removed the old drives  (2 Striped 160Mb to be exact).  Installing the new drive was easy.  Everything went in ok and we’re good to go.

Then I tried to boot off the CD I made.  Well now things get interesting.  It boots up and complains that;

“System Recovery Option is not compatible with the version of windows you are trying to repair”

Ok, road block number one.  So I grabbed my original Windows 7 disk and booted off of it.  Tried the Restore again and the same thing.  Block number two.

Next, I tried to do an install of a blank Windows7 OS.  Then it wouldn’t let me install on the unformatted drive space. Things are getting annoying now.  Looking at the drive partitions I noticed that the first partition on the drive was labelled EFS.  So I Googled it: Looks like something to do with Mac machines.   Holding my breath I deleted the EFS partition.  Now some joy, I was able to create a new partition and Windows7 was happy to start the install.

After going through the install and entering in the Product Key.  I unchecked the register automatically checkbox.  I don’t want it to register, since I’ve already done this.   It asked to connect to my Wifi, I didn’t allow this either.  This means that Windows can not connect to Microsoft and no virus’ can get me.

Now the desktop is up and running. So far so good for this new harddrive, things are running really fast.  But now I need to get my original System image back on here.   I inserted the System Restore CD into the DVD drive I created earlier, and booted off it.   Watch the screen, the “Boot off CD, DVD” goes by real fast.  I missed it twice.

Using the Method 2 described here: I proceeded to reimage the system back to what it was.  It warns this may take hours, so off to enjoy some NetFlix.

Several hours later, with the progress indicator slowly creeping across it finally finished.  I rebooted and it worked great.   I had to reboot twice, and Norton 360 had a problem but it fixed itself.

The new hard drive is working great, and is a lot faster than I expected.  My laptop is back to running quick again.  Mission accomplished.

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