Harddrive swap from GX280 to GX620


Desktop computer Forums (Audio, General Hardware, Video)

Harddrive swap from GX280 to GX620

  • I purchased a new GX620 and would like to move a primary hard drive from a GX280 to the GX620 without reinstalling the operating system.  When i do this the bios recognizes the drive ok but windows will not start.  Is there something i can do to make this work properly. 
  • Yes, you have to reinstall Windows.

    Windows 2000 and XP (and 2003 server) can only be moved between systems is the disk controllers are the same (so that they can share the same driver). On Optiplex systems generally the controller is determined by the chipset (the only exception would be if you added/purchased a SCSI or ATA/SATA controller card.

    The GX280 has the Intel 915G chipset. The GX620 has the Intel 945G chipset. As you can see here, the 915G uses the ICH6-family controller. You can also see that the 945G uses the ICH7-family controller so they are different.

    The only option I can think of that might work (wouldn't hurt to try (or not more than a regular driver update would)) is to upgrade you chipset drivers with the drive in the GX280, as Intel tends to release new driver packages that are downward compatible, so upgrading to the later driver may also add support for the newer controller (depends on how Intel designed the driver, which I cannot tell you and don't have the ability to test (don't have a GX280 or 620)).

    Member since 2003

  • If you have a standard Windows XP Pro install disk, you could try doing a repair install - start the install from CD and go to the third or fourth page where it asks if you want to repair (NOT the first one).  Don't elect to format the disk.  This option redetects the hardware and reinstalls the right drivers; I have used it to switch motherboards on Dells......
  • Put the drive back in the GX280 and install the latest chipset driver then shut down.

    Move the drive to the GX620.

    Put the GREEN XPSP2 slipstreamed Dell cd in the drive and boot from it.

    Make sure there are NO NETWORK CABLES ATTACHED.

    When it says do automated recovery skip that part

    Then say install a new copy of XP.

    During that process there will be a second prompt to repair EXISTING xp on the drive.

    Choose that repair option and the drive will repair and about 1 hour later you will be able to use the drive
    with all your apps etc without reinstalling.

    DO NOT PUT IN A PASSWORD OR ACCOUNT. When it gets to that part hit the SKIP BUTTON.

    Done this with several GX270 AND 280 already. Works fine.

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  • Thank you all for the advice.  the chipset was definatly the problem.  I reinstalled the chipset in the GX280 and then moved the drive and did the reinstall and all worked great.  This has saved me hours of work.  this forum reall y does save time.  thanks again.
  • The problem is the Vender PnP-ID is not loaded; therefore, XP never initializes a Drive Controller Driver becasue it doesn't know which one to use.

    Your error is probably a Blue Screen of Death almost identical to this:

    STOP: 0x0000007B (0xF741B84C,0xC0000034,0x00000000,0x00000000)

    Here is an quote from Microsoft about this issue. People were very upset about this, so Microsoft helped out.

    Each chip set has a different Plug-n-Play identifier (PnP-ID).

    "The PnP-ID information of mass storage controllers for the backup computer must be in the registry before startup so that Windows XP can initialize the correct drivers."

    If you prime the registry by adding all the vender PnP IDs for all the various controllers XP supports, you will have support for 99.9% of all hard drive controllers on the market! XP will no longer BSOD and will continue to boot.

    Here, read about it here:


    Basically, you just copy the registry file and paste it into notepad and save it as a .reg and double-click. It will add support for every controller XP natively supports including most SATA controllers!!!

    After this, XP should boot just fine on a GX 620, GX520, GX280, GX270, GX260, GX240, GX10, GX110, GX110, and GX1. If you DO NOT belive me, try it via something like Symantec Ghost Imaging. It will also work with all the SX computers and it won't matter what form factor. It will also boot on other Non-Dell and even Pentium 2, Pentium 3, Pentium 4, and Pentium D. You can even do laptops. We have D610, D600, D505, D400, and some other lattitudes. All Wireless drivers were added too and have no bad side effects on desktops. Windows knows the hardware isn't found and doesn't bother to load the drivers.

    Obviously, an SATA hard drive is only going to work on a GX 270 and above due to the connector, but if you use imaging software to copy the image to an IDE drive, I guarantee XP will boot. If you get the drivers installed for both the 280 and the 620 and re-activate once, it will probably let you move the hard drive back and forth as needed and plug and play the drivers at boot if you move the drive. I.e. it should work perfect in both.


    You will need some different drivers though for each computer. Also, if you do not have the Volume Licence Agreement edition of XP, you will most definitly need to re-activate each time.

    Obviously, if you are a business that owns more than 5 computers and has a Valid Volume Licence, you are permitted to image and do massive deployments of XP.

    At work, we have more than 10,000 computers on a Novell Network. SIDS are not an issue like they would be in an Active Directory Domain, so we don't bother with SysPrep.

    Instead, we started with a GX620 and slipstreamed SP2 Volume Licence. We applied all updates and our software programs with Volume Licences. Next, we applied this fix and installed all the driver for the 620. I don't think we ever did the chipset though.

    Then we imaged it to a GX280 and added the drivers for that, then the 270, then the 260... all the way till we got to the GX1. If we had more than one configureation for any particular computer, we would load the driver for both different configurations. Eventually, when we got to the not so bleading edge computers no drivers were needed!

    With no SysPrep or need for Random Sids, Volume Licences, and imaging software, we can multicast entire labs of computers of different types all at once without worrying about drivers. We have imaging setup to boot via PXE off of the network and restart when done. Needless to say all applicatios that need to be installed after the imaging and different apps for different people are deployed to users via the network by group and container assignments thorugh ZENWorks. We do not carry any media with ust to do our job.

    Just thought I would run this by all you people who think moving Windows to a slightly different computer requires a re-install or repair install. This is not the case. If Widnows can load the sorage controller, has the drivers, and doesn't get affended via Product Activation, it will work fine.
  • Sorry to re-open thread years down the line. Is it possible to swap HD from SFF gx280 into a desktop gx260? 280 has some bad caps below the power supply. Just need my bands song masters and some TV and Movies off the drive.

  • M32Mirach   

    Answered in your other post here :-




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