How to Transfer a Drive from One PC to Another in Windows 11

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This article provides a guide on moving a hard disk drive from one computer to another in Windows 11. It outlines the step-by-step process from pre-disconnection checks to confirm the drive’s health, taking the disk offline and uninstalling via Device Manager, to installation in the new computer. It specifies the process applies only for secondary…

This article describes the steps to move a hard disk drive from one computer to another in Windows 11.

Windows lets you take a disk from one computer and transfer it to another. However, the Disk must be a second disk drive, which means it cannot be the operating System or OS drive.

You can safely unplug the disks from the computer if they are external. If the disks are internal, turn off the computer and physically remove them.

Also, when you move a disk to another computer, a drive with primary volumes will receive the following available drive letter.

Below is how to do that on Windows 11.

Transfer a disk to another computer on Windows 11

As described above, Windows lets you take a disk from one computer and transfer it to another. If a data disk is attached to a computer and you want to transfer to another computer, the steps below show you how.

Before disconnecting a drive from a computer, ensure the drive is healthy. If not, repair it before disconnecting.

First, open the Windows Settings app.

You can do that by clicking on the Start menu and selecting the Settings app. Alternatively, use the keyboard shortcuts (Windows key + I) to launch the Settings app.

windows 11 new settings button
windows 11 new settings button

When the app opens, click the System -> Storage tile to expand.

windows 11 system storage tile
Windows 11 system storage tile

Expand the Advanced storage settings on the System -> Storage tile, then select the Disk and volumes tile to expand.

windows disk and volumes tile
windows disk and volumes tile

On the Disks and volumes settings pane, locate the Disk you want to move and confirm it’s healthy. Next, click the Disk’s Properties button.

windows disk and volumes properties
windows disk and volume properties

On the Disk’s Properties settings pane, under Status, click the Take offline button. This will take the Disk offline, so no activities are taking place.

windows disk and volumes properties take offline
windows disk and volume properties take offline

Uninstall a disk via Device Manager

Now that the Disk is offline, open the Device Manager to uninstall the Disk you want to transfer. To do that, click the Start menu button, search for Device Manager, and select it to open.

windows search device manager on start menu
Windows search device manager on the start menu

Double-click Disk drives to expand when the Device Manager app opens in the device list. Then select the drive you wish to transfer, right-click it, and select Uninstall device.

windows disk drive uninstall via device manager
windows disk drive uninstall via device manager

In the Confirm Device Removal dialog box, click OK.

If the disks you want to move are dynamic, in Disk Management, right-click the disks you want to move, and then click Remove Disk.

Install the Disk on a new computer

Once you remove the Disk from the old computer, please take it to the new one and install it. If the disks are external, plug them into the computer. If the disks are internal, ensure the computer is turned off and then physically install the disks in that computer.

Turn on the computer, and Windows might most likely identify and install the Disk. If not, use the steps below to install.

On the new computer, open Disk Management.

Click Action and then click Rescan Disks.

windows disk management rescan disks
Windows disk management rescans disks.

Right-click any disk marked Foreign. Next, click Import Foreign Disks and then follow the on-screen instructions.

That should do it!

Reference:

https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-server/storage/disk-management/move-disks-to-another-computer

Conclusion:

This post showed you how to move a disk from one computer to another on Windows 11. Please use the comment form below if you find any errors above or have something to add.

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One response to “How to Transfer a Drive from One PC to Another in Windows 11”

  1. Follow these steps to find out the partition style of a disk drive on Windows 11 - Geek Rewind

    […] way to determine your device’s disk drive partition style is to use the Windows Disk Management […]

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