I am getting a new computer, replacing my 486. The old computer has a C drive and slave D drive. The new one has only a C drive. What is the best or easiest way to copy the files from the old IDE hard drives to the new computer's hard drive? I know I can use an external ZIP drive. I also know there is a connecting cable of some sort that will link the two computers, but I am not sure exactly what it is. For simplicity, can I temporarily mount the old hard drives (one at a time) in the new computer, as a slave drive, then copy files to the new hard drive? I know this might slow down my new system, but after I removed the old drive, the new system would be back up to speed wouldn't it?
A cheap and easy way I've done this in the past is:
1. Format the new hard drive. It must NOT be bootable
2. Make the new hdd a slave, and make the old drive a master. Hook them up on the same ide channel. Alternatively, they can be on different ide channels, as long as you set the jumpers right, and the new drive is not bootable.
3. Boot up your computer
4. In windows 9x click on start/run
5. Type in the command
xcopy32.exe c:\*.* /c /h /e /k d:\
Don't forget to put in spaces where they belong, observe the forward and backward slashes, and also replace the drive letters with the right letters on your system
6. Click OK, and this will copy every single file on your old hard drive onto the new drive, including system and hidden files
7. Once the copying is done, close the dos window, shutdown your computer.
8. Remove the old drive, change the jumper settings on the new hard drive to master, and reinstall it on the ide ribbon properly.
9. You're done.
If you wish to still use the old drive in your new computer, it needs to be formatted, because you cannot have two bootable drives on the same system. GOODLUCK!
For further reading on this subject, see this page