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I have a stationary computer with Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit. The primary (SSD) hard drive seems to have stopped working completely, it is not even visible in BIOS. The computer has a secondary hard drive (non-SSD, NTFS, 2TB). I have had Windows backup running and saving backups to that secondary drive.

I am planning to buy a new SSD drive to replace the faulty one. I want to restore the backup to this new SSD drive.

What is the most straightforward way to do this? A step-by-step description would be greatly appreciated.

Further information:
I have a Windows install DVD and the computer has a DVD-drive. The secondary drive is not bootable, so I cannot currently access it. The new SSD drive will probably not be identical to the original, so it might need different drivers

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Both SSDs will likely use SATA. No driver changes needed for that. – Hennes Jul 8 '12 at 20:24

Assuming you were making System Image backups then you can insert the Windows install disk and run the recovery during setup. It's very well laid out and easy to follow, but here's some basic steps to get you started:

  1. Insert the installation disc or system repair disc.
  2. Restart your computer using the computer's power button.
  3. If prompted, press any key to start the computer from the installation disc or system repair disc.
  4. Choose your language settings, and then click Next
  5. Click Repair your computer
  6. Select a recovery option, and then click Next.

More info from Microsoft: Back up and restore: frequently asked questions.

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Unfortunately, after I choose "Repair your computer" (step 5) I get this message box "System Recovery Options This version of System Recovery Options is not compatible with the version of Windows you are trying to repair. Try using a recovery disc that is compatible with this version of Windows." I have googled for it and I cannot find any obvious solution – Klas Mellbourn Jul 9 '12 at 7:27
Normally that error means that the version of Windows on the disk is different than what your backups contain. Example: you are trying to restore a Windows 7 Professional x64 with a Windows 7 Professional x86 disk. Make sure the Windows edition on the disk matches the edition of the backups you are trying to restore. – N_Lindz Jul 26 '12 at 16:11

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