How to Move a Disk to another Computer in Windows 11

This article describes the steps one can take 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 secondary disk drive, which means it cannot be the operating system or OS drive.

If the disks are external, you can safely unplug them from the computer. 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 basic volumes will receive the next available drive letter on that computer.

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 you disconnect a drive from a computer, make sure 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 button 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 on the System -> Storage tile to expand.

windows 11 system storage tile
windows 11 system storage tile

On the System -> Storage tile, expand the Advanced storage settings, 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 volumes 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 on it.

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

Uninstall a disk via Device Manager

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

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

When the Device Manager app opens, in the device list, double-click Disk drives to expand. 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 disks, 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 get the disk out of the old computer, take it to the new one and install it. If the disks are external, plug them into the computer. If the disks are internal, make sure 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. 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. If you find any error above or have something to add, please use the comment form below.