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I've bought a new SSD for my notebook. The old hard disk (with old OS) is now in an external case which is connected via USB to the notebook. I hoped that I can simply connect the old HDD via USB and boot my old system (windows xp pro) from it. Unfortunately I get a blueescreen when I want to boot from USB.

Maybe somebody has an idea what could be the reason?

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What was the original OS on what model of netbook, and when does it bluescreen? – tobylane Feb 9 '11 at 13:29
it depends alot on the notebook, many older, Win XP based systems will not allow you to boot from a USB drive. you'll have to go into the BIOS to see if booting from a USB drive is possible. – Patrick Feb 9 '11 at 13:41

Quick search on Google brought up the following:

It's most probably a driver issue, and as most people will point out, Windows is not designed to boot off a USB drive and will require some modifications to do so.

You might want to start with the article above and try to find more information on Windows XP specifically.

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Please mention that the article doesn't apply to Windows XP, only to Vista and 7. – Cristian Ciupitu Feb 10 '11 at 17:26
I did. "You might want to start with the article above and try to find more information on Windows XP specifically" ... – akseli Feb 14 '11 at 17:52

Similar to akseli's answer above, Microsoft offers this KB article for Windows XP:

I've used a fix based on this before when moving a HD to a different PC, and it has worked. I'm not sure whether it will work for a USB-based drive since the controller might act differently than a "standard" IDE controller would.

I can't find the site I've used the step-by-step instructions from before, but this appears to achieve the same goal:

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was the old disk IDE or SATA, you can try to hook it up to SATA port, some enclosures offer SATA / eSATA port

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While you can select boot from USB, it will not boot the OS without some tinkering. There are several sites that explain. Basically, the system starts to boot (as you know) and then it drops the USB connection and the boot fails.

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Get software to transfer (image) your XP installation to the SSD. There are some free options:

Drive Image XML and Macrium reflect are other free options in imaging software.

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