Author Topic: time for a new laptop  (Read 1864 times)

MatthewK

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Location: Michigan
time for a new laptop
« on: September 14, 2017, 01:14:36 PM »
Ok, currently have a Toshiba Satellite M645. It's been a great computer but is getting old and unresponsive. This has been all I have needed, would like something similar. Not willing to pay a lot for a Macbook or similar. What are some of my options/recommendations. It's mostly used for my finances and recreational things, youtube, netflix and such. And I'm not very computer literate. Thanks in advance.

BiochemicalDJ

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 194
  • Location: Ottawa
    • My FI Journal
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2017, 01:52:00 PM »
Before you get a new computer, wonders can be done by backing up your important files (to Google Drive or whatever) and then restoring the computer to factory defaults/reinstalling Windows.

A fresh Windows install can really pep things up. Alternately, if you just use it for browsing, switching to a much lighter weight OS like Linux Mint would breathe new life into an older Laptop.
Having fun isn't hard when you have a library card.
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/biochemicaldj-redox/

rymmm

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2017, 02:06:02 PM »
You have an i5 cpu, albeit an early generation-- but it sounds like that model commonly shipped with a very slow 5400rpm hard drive.  A hard drive is a mechanical device-- which heads and platters where you data is stored.  They have been largely replaced now by solid state drives, which have no moving parts and are insanely fast by comparison..

There are lots of blogs and posts about how to do this- but the simplest (assuming you are running windows 10) is to download the media creation tool from Microsoft for the windows 10 installer, and then burning it to a blank dvd-R. You can buy these at any store pretty much. The media creation tool will walk you through the process and do it mostly for you.

You would then backup your current files (anything you have added to your computer since it was new that you want to keep) to either a cloud service like google drive or dropbox, USB flash drive, or you could even burn those to a dvd as well.

Remove the mechanical hard drive, install the solid state drive, put the windows install dvd in the dvd drive and boot the computer.  The windows installer should start, and walk you through the process of installing windows on the new hard drive.

This is the more complicated-- but best performing way to accomplish the upgrade.

The easier way, is to purchase a 2.5" USB hard drive enclosure in addition to the SSD. You can install the SSD in the enclosure, and use software (typically included with SSDs) to move all of your files and windows install from the old hard drive onto the SSD. You would then remove the SSD from the enclosure, and install it in your laptop and turn it on. Everything would be copied 100% in this process, no additional work needed.

Samsung EVO 850 is the recommended SSD model for performance and reliability by most enthusiasts, although a bit more pricy than some others.  Other decent brands are sandisk, intel, crucial. Note you will need a 2.5" drive with a SATA connector.

Expect a pretty big improvement in boot time and launching applications, for about $100 and an afternoon of work.

katsiki

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 656
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Louisiana
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2017, 02:07:53 PM »
You may also want to do some maintenance (if you are not already).  How full is your hard drive for example?  You can run something like ccleaner to remove temp files, updates, etc.

Hard drive upgrade is a great idea as well.
"busy eating lentils in a van by the river"

marielle

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 821
  • Age: 24
  • Location: South Carolina
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2017, 02:14:35 PM »
I second the Linux Mint/Ubuntu options. There are others, but those are pretty popular options with great support in case you have any issues. My laptop is ancient, I think at least 6-7 years old, and it's easily usable for the things you describe because it has Linux Mint now. Definitely not good for gaming or anything intensive, but for general use it's fine.

Sibley

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2178
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Chicago, IL
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2017, 02:27:58 PM »
OP, you have already found one person who LOVES solid state drives (SSD). Yes, they're great. But honestly, that laptop you reference has been on the market since 2010, so it's potentially over 15 years old. I wouldn't go buying new parts for it. Also, replacing the hard drive would involve a fresh install, which often is a decent chunk of the speed increase anyway.

Given the sheer age of the machine, there's a couple questions that will help you determine the best path. Note: I assume below that you know very little about computers.

1. Have you tried backing up the machine and doing a fresh install? If not, do that. Overtime, computers get junked up. Like you need to take the trash out and clean your house or it gets gross, the same happens to computers. If the overall hardware is ok and it's just really junked up, a fresh install may return you to perfect happiness. If so, done! Total cost: time. Given the age though, the hardware may be on the way out, forcing your hand.

If #1 doesn't fix your situation:
Are you willing to consider something other than Windows operating systems? It's ok if the answer is no - though all the computer nerds are going to push all sorts of options, you can ignore them if you want. If yes, I'm sure someone will come along and recommend Linux, Unix, etc. I don't want to spend time futzing with my computer (including educating myself on the many non-Windows options), so I don't bother with any of those.

If you were to buy a new laptop (or desktop), it would most likely come with Windows 10 installed. You can get decent laptops for $300-500 last I checked, no need to go nuts. If you don't want files on the machine, you can get a ChromeBook even cheaper.

You can also look into using tablets or similar in place of a laptop. That is entirely dependent on what you actually do on the computer. Tablets are not a full substitute for laptops, so it may or may not work for you.

Daley

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3626
  • Location: Cow country. Moo.
  • Got that mustache feeling.
    • Technical Meshugana
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2017, 11:14:01 PM »
Gonna go counter to Sibley's recommendations with my seemingly ancient advice as I've been saying some variant of this for nearly a decade:

Buy a refurbished Lenovo Thinkpad T series (430/530 is the sweet spot feature/price wise currently), or Dell Latitude E series (The E5430/6430 models are the sweet spots here). US Micro has a good refurbish program, good prices, and decent warranty. Following these recommendations, you shouldn't have to spend more than $200-300 for a solid laptop built like a tank and easy to repair/upgrade.

Don't get too lost in processor speeds. Pretty much any 2-4 core i3/i5 will be plenty for most anyone. The biggest changes hasn't been so much processing speed as power consumption and battery life for some time now. There's some screaming multi-core processors out there, but they're not worth the premium given that all but specialty high-end applications and games don't need them to run. Even Windows 10 doesn't have much beefier system requirements (beyond RAM/graphics) than XP SP3 and Win7. Don't sweat it, and care more about how much RAM the thing has... that'll be the biggest performance booster. Aim for 4-8GB.

It's short, pithy, but lacks detail. I finally fixed the lack of elaboration after the post quoted above wound up getting me interviewed for laptop shopping advice by The Simple Dollar back in December. Their editors gutted the advice I gave on laptop shopping for reasons but still left a couple sentences and a link, so I capitalized on their clickthrough traffic and posted this: How to Laptop Shop

Covers most major points. Repair, replace, etc. About the only thing I'd change at this point is the light Linux distro recommendation. It's not that Lubuntu or distros with the Mate desktop aren't great, but I found a Lubuntu variant called LXLE that's just mind-blowingly lean, even by light Linux distro standards. I've been using it on an absolutely ancient Lenovo Ideapad S10 here recently, and the laptop is actually quite peppy and responsive... and we're talking about a nine year old netbook (not even a full laptop) running an Intel Atom N270, a 32-bit processor so gutless that some Celeron processors five years its senior (we're talking circa 2003, here) were about on par, and it's paired with only 1.5GB of RAM. I'm so impressed by its performance and actual usability with LXLE that I'm considering pulling it back out of retirement for a go-bag toss-in since it's about the size of a tablet but a little thicker, better built, has a GSM modem, a physical keyboard, and isn't Android. Might even toss in a cheap $20 SSD just for giggles just to see what happens.

So keep this in mind next time someone tells you (including yourself) that switching operating systems isn't worth it, or that a seven year old i5 processor is too slow to consider repairing a laptop that may otherwise still be stable, electronics-wise. Any electronics you keep out of the landfill and exhaust its full lifespan on before replacing it is a good thing. Be open to change or climbing out of your comfort zone to learn a new skill for that reason alone. If it potentially means learning a new operating system or fiddling with a few small screws to be a good steward of the resources you've been so fortunately blessed with, then be open to the idea.

...this said, the Satellite is plenty speedy configuration wise. If the motherboard and RAM check out fine but the HDD is actually failing and not just suffering years of bitrot, stuffing an SSD in will still give you more than enough machine from a machine you already own. Even if the hard drive isn't dying, the SSD would still be a good upgrade.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2017, 11:21:04 PM by I.P. Daley »
Hi, I'm Daley, the Howard Cosell of MVNOs and the Technical Meshugana. I'm also the author of the Frugal Communications Guide and our own Superguide.

Thegoblinchief

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7216
  • Age: 33
  • Location: SE WI
  • Lunatic urban homesteader
    • The Goblin Chief
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2017, 06:39:05 AM »
Daley- what's the learning curve like for LXLE if I'm already familiar with things like Mint? I've got an ageing laptop that I'd love to keep going but I don't use any Windows specific software anymore, it's almost all web or very basic photo editing.
Rabbit: it's what's for dinner.

MatthewK

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Location: Michigan
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2017, 01:49:17 PM »
So I'm going to do a backup/install soon. I'll see how that goes, but now I'm very curious about this Linux Mint. It appears that it's less than $20 on Amazon, just a little boot drive.https://www.amazon.com/Linux-Cinnamon-Bootable-Flash-Drive/dp/B06Y413ZWN/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1505677192&sr=8-3&keywords=linux+mint I'll still be able to browse, do turbo tax, use all the google app's etc.? Basically what I do now on this device but without windows? I use to use MS office a bit for spread sheets etc., but have been using google sheets, doc's and such lately. Sorry, sure I'm coming across as a light weight compared to some of the replies/idea's mentioned above. Thanks for the suggestions.

rymmm

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2017, 06:06:16 PM »
No need to apologize-- asking questions is what this forum is for.

Do not "buy" Linux Mint on amazon. You can download the installer for free and make a boot CD or flash drive yourself. http://www.wikihow.com/Install-Linux-Mint

You can also buy official dvds from the project itself, however you can make them pretty easily.
https://linuxmint.com/download.php

With your computer, you will want to download the x64 (64 bit) versions of mint (or windows).

If everything you do is already web based, it could be a good option for you since you would still have google chrome or firefox web browsers. If your turbo tax is a desktop version for windows- you will be out of luck by switching to Linux.

Another reason to think about the SSD-- all of your data lives on either an SSD or Hard drive. Your previous windows install and all of your files will be on your old hard drive still if you take it out an install an SSD. If you realize you forgot to back something up, or want to go back to windows(if you put Mint on the SSD), it is as simple as putting back in the hard drive you took out. If you decided to stay on windows and bought the SSD, you could do fresh windows install on the SSD, and still have a "backup" copy of everything on the old hard drive in case you mess something up.

I agree with I.P. Daley about the used thinkpads (X/W/T series)-- I have been doing this for years. Every 2-3 years I buy a ~5 yr old model, and then pass down my old one to family members. Never paid more than $120. If you have mastered the skills of moving an SSD, backing up files, and installing windows- you can easily find these laptops in great shape for a very low cost with "missing hard drives\SSDs" on eBay, and install your SSD into them when you want another upgrade.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2017, 06:24:58 PM by rymmm »

Daley

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3626
  • Location: Cow country. Moo.
  • Got that mustache feeling.
    • Technical Meshugana
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2017, 01:00:41 PM »
Daley- what's the learning curve like for LXLE if I'm already familiar with things like Mint? I've got an ageing laptop that I'd love to keep going but I don't use any Windows specific software anymore, it's almost all web or very basic photo editing.

Well, if you're familiar with LXDE as a desktop environment, it's pretty trivial. Even if you're not, it's pretty simple when you're already familiar with other Linux desktop environments like Cinnamon or Mate.
Hi, I'm Daley, the Howard Cosell of MVNOs and the Technical Meshugana. I'm also the author of the Frugal Communications Guide and our own Superguide.

MatthewK

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Location: Michigan
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #11 on: September 19, 2017, 01:43:15 PM »
Thanks for all the suggestions! After doing some research I think I will replace the hard drive with a SSD, also purchase the enclosure to make the swap a bit easier. Looks like I can get a San Disk for about $75, enclosure for $15 and I think I may replace the battery as well since it's been dead for more than a year....it'll be nice not having to leave it plugged in all the time. All totaled for about ~ $140.00. Not cheap but better than buying new, also the keeping it from a landfill really resonates with me. I'll post back once updates are made.

Thegoblinchief

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7216
  • Age: 33
  • Location: SE WI
  • Lunatic urban homesteader
    • The Goblin Chief
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2017, 01:53:18 PM »
Daley- what's the learning curve like for LXLE if I'm already familiar with things like Mint? I've got an ageing laptop that I'd love to keep going but I don't use any Windows specific software anymore, it's almost all web or very basic photo editing.

Well, if you're familiar with LXDE as a desktop environment, it's pretty trivial. Even if you're not, it's pretty simple when you're already familiar with other Linux desktop environments like Cinnamon or Mate.

Had the time to download and play around with it as a live boot disk and like it quite a bit. Installing it right now. Thanks for the recommendation, should hopefully let me get a few more years out of this machine.
Rabbit: it's what's for dinner.

MatthewK

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Location: Michigan
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2017, 07:55:46 AM »
so this is turning out to be a P.I.T.A. I ordered a sandisk SDSSDA-120 drive. Created a repair disk and a media creation disk Windows 10. Swapped out the drives no problem, getting good a that as I have to keep doing it to use this computer. Problem is I'm getting nowhere with the new hard drive as far as setting it up with these disks. I've moved important files to an external hard drive, not the system because I wanted to start from new and will just move files over once I have an operating system on device. I keep getting boot fail notices and all kinds of gibberish I don't understand. Whats my easiest solution to getting this sorted out? Get a hard drive enclousure and go that route? Also someone noted if I go that route I also need software that should have come with my SSD in order to move from old drive to new, I didn't get any, just the drive. Kinda thinking this is beyond my capability/desire and I should send the drive back and use computer as is.

Daley

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3626
  • Location: Cow country. Moo.
  • Got that mustache feeling.
    • Technical Meshugana
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #14 on: October 08, 2017, 09:56:08 AM »
Did you download and perform at minimum RAM and processor stability tests on the system before you ordered the SSD and got started using Ultimate Boot CD or Toshiba's diagnostic suite? I just ask in advance, because I suggested doing hardware tests before replacing the drive to make sure the system was sound. I want to eliminate that possibility from the mix.

That said, without knowing the exact sort of error messages you're getting, it's hard to advise.

If the hardware is solid, you didn't get a defective SSD (it's theoretically possible), and you're just having difficulties on setup/migration, and you'd like to try and just migrate your existing install, EaseUS Todo Backup Free can do that, just be sure you pay close attention to the configuration settings on migration and make sure you utilize the SSD migration settings, or else TRIM and the other useful bits for SSD performance such as partition block size changes under the Windows partitions won't be enabled.

It's also worth noting that depending on if Windows was installed with secure boot/UEFI enabled and the factory drive was partitioned using GPT instead of MBR/DOS, you'll need to run Windows' repair tool from your recovery media first before you'll be able to boot into the OS after data migration. You'll basically know if you need to do this if it doesn't boot after migration using the EaseUS tool.

Hope this gives you a few more starting points. Any other issues, include greater detail of what exactly is going on and any diagnostics error codes, and I'm sure someone here will be able to help you out.
Hi, I'm Daley, the Howard Cosell of MVNOs and the Technical Meshugana. I'm also the author of the Frugal Communications Guide and our own Superguide.

AccidentialMustache

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 73
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2017, 10:36:02 AM »
At a very very basic level, get a small (in both sizes, 4 gig is all you can use and the physically smaller it is the better) USB key. Plug it in and don't plan to remove it (you may remove it when the computer is off, for safe transport. Plug it in before you turn it on again.). Open file explorer. Opposite-click on the USB drive, pick properties. On the window that opens there will be something called "readyboost" -- click on that tab and turn it on for the USB key. Use the machine as normal and it will gradually speed up as it caches important files onto the USB key. The USB key will be slow to write data, but it is faster than a mechanical HDD to read data -- by a lot.

If that isn't enough, then worry about other options.

Daley

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3626
  • Location: Cow country. Moo.
  • Got that mustache feeling.
    • Technical Meshugana
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2017, 11:23:42 AM »
"readyboost"

Performance improvements using Readyboost on a system like a Satellite M645 are going to be almost unnoticeable, and really not worth the effort. Readyboost was mostly designed to improve performance on RAM limited systems by shunting virtual memory (swap) off of a mechanical harddrive and onto a device with faster non-sequential read-write access speeds.

If the motherboard and RAM are solid, replacing the HDD with an SDD is the appropriate path for performance improvement with the system in question.
Hi, I'm Daley, the Howard Cosell of MVNOs and the Technical Meshugana. I'm also the author of the Frugal Communications Guide and our own Superguide.

dang1

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 71
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2017, 05:10:50 PM »
check out a Chromebook. Have my ASUS Flip for a while now and pretty happy with it.

AccidentialMustache

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 73
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #18 on: October 08, 2017, 07:53:03 PM »
"readyboost"

Performance improvements using Readyboost on a system like a Satellite M645 are going to be almost unnoticeable, and really not worth the effort. Readyboost was mostly designed to improve performance on RAM limited systems by shunting virtual memory (swap) off of a mechanical harddrive and onto a device with faster non-sequential read-write access speeds.

If the motherboard and RAM are solid, replacing the HDD with an SDD is the appropriate path for performance improvement with the system in question.

After swapping out my FIL's laptop's failing 7200 rpm hdd for a 5400 rpm one, readyboost and a 16Gb USB3 micro-key brought performance back up beyond what the 7200 used to do. It isn't just for ram-limited (8Gb on that system), its for any time you thrash a mechanical HDD. That includes cold boots and cold program loads, as well as swap. A friend used it back in the "SSDs are expensive" days to boost level load times -- I don't recall his numbers but he'd timed before and after and it did make a difference for him.

Side bonuses: cheap and easy to test if it helps someone's situation without actually investing much (or anything), low risk (not asking someone to open up a machine and replace guts).

rymmm

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #19 on: October 10, 2017, 10:07:17 PM »
Matthew-

I am confident we can get this worked out if you have not already.

How far along the Windows install process are you getting before having a problem? What steps do you complete before the failure happens?

When creating the media, are you using a DVD or a USB flash drive? I have seen defective blank DVDs botch windows installs before.

You are right that clean install is preferred, but if you want to try the migration route --You mentioned you have an external hard drive, so you might be able to open the enclosure from it and install the new SSD into it to perform the migration. This guide should help out using the sandisk clone tool. http://mp3support.sandisk.com/downloads/um/ssd-install-guide.pdf



re: readyboost.
I could see it making a difference in a system with a small amount of memory, very low performing older 5400/4200rpm hard drive, and a very fast USB3 flash drive. I believe the OPs laptop is USB2, and most 5400rpm drives will outperform what a USB2 interface is capable of, with the exception of random IO if a very high quality USB2 drive is used. I think for the OP the performance gain would be negligible.  IIRC ready boost predicts which files will be needed and preloads them from disk and maps into memory. Windows does this into RAM already, so if the system has sufficient memory, the performance gain should not be that great since RAM is insanely fast compared to the best of USB flash drives. With an SSD, loading files from disk is still slower than ram, but the SSD improves the performance of all files, not just files which are predicted to be needed.

MatthewK

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Location: Michigan
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #20 on: October 11, 2017, 01:38:24 PM »
 Rymmm, I had a few free minutes so this is what I'm seeing..
  Installed new SSD and booted computer. Installed my media creation disk and get as far as step 7 which is where to install windows ( by the way I select windows 10 home x64 from the 4 selections in step 5. Also in step 3 it asks for windows product key which I don't know so it gives the option to select "I don't have a product key". Not sure if that is relevant.) So now I'm at step 7 for where to install. Two choices, 1) UPGRADE : INSTALL WINDOWS AND KEEP FILES, 2) CUSTOM : INSTALL WINDOWS ONLY (ADVANCED). Two sounds like the one I want but neither selection seems to work. Drives and Partitions are mentioned and and each one say's windows can't be installed. I've seen partitions mentioned here but not sure what they are.

acroy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1469
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Dallas TX
    • SWAMI
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #21 on: October 11, 2017, 01:39:45 PM »
return the parts,
give the laptop away and get a Chromebook
I'm sure your notebook is fixable but unless you know what you're doing, the thing will never run again.
SWAMI (Satisfied Working Advanced Mustachian Individual) 1 stash, 1 DW, 7 Mini MM's...
God, Family, Country. Everything else is details.

Daley

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3626
  • Location: Cow country. Moo.
  • Got that mustache feeling.
    • Technical Meshugana
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #22 on: October 11, 2017, 02:46:30 PM »
Rymmm, I had a few free minutes so this is what I'm seeing..
  Installed new SSD and booted computer. Installed my media creation disk and get as far as step 7 which is where to install windows ( by the way I select windows 10 home x64 from the 4 selections in step 5. Also in step 3 it asks for windows product key which I don't know so it gives the option to select "I don't have a product key". Not sure if that is relevant.) So now I'm at step 7 for where to install. Two choices, 1) UPGRADE : INSTALL WINDOWS AND KEEP FILES, 2) CUSTOM : INSTALL WINDOWS ONLY (ADVANCED). Two sounds like the one I want but neither selection seems to work. Drives and Partitions are mentioned and and each one say's windows can't be installed. I've seen partitions mentioned here but not sure what they are.

First, ignore the negativity from the peanut gallery.

Quick question for you: Is this the install recovery media you created from your running operating system, or did you download a Windows 10 install disk image from Microsoft's website? It's possible you have a corrupt recovery image, and honestly I've never been able to get those OS made Windows reinstall disks to work for a hill of beans. Fortunately, you can easily download a legit, fresh Win 10 install disk with zero hoop jumping from Microsoft if this is the case (follow the prior link). As for activation and the serial number, here's the thing: Win 10 upgrades from Win7/8 where you don't have a serial number can do clean Win 10 installs as well. Just install without the serial, and let the thing phone home after you complete the install. After a few minutes (even up to an hour later), it should auto-detect the motherboard and auto-activate.

You can do this. I have faith in you.

As for installation specifically and the steps involved? Yes, you'll want to go with the custom install Windows only choice, wipe the drive, let it autopartition.
Hi, I'm Daley, the Howard Cosell of MVNOs and the Technical Meshugana. I'm also the author of the Frugal Communications Guide and our own Superguide.

rymmm

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #23 on: October 11, 2017, 05:02:36 PM »
Rymmm, I had a few free minutes so this is what I'm seeing..
  Installed new SSD and booted computer. Installed my media creation disk and get as far as step 7 which is where to install windows ( by the way I select windows 10 home x64 from the 4 selections in step 5. Also in step 3 it asks for windows product key which I don't know so it gives the option to select "I don't have a product key". Not sure if that is relevant.) So now I'm at step 7 for where to install. Two choices, 1) UPGRADE : INSTALL WINDOWS AND KEEP FILES, 2) CUSTOM : INSTALL WINDOWS ONLY (ADVANCED). Two sounds like the one I want but neither selection seems to work. Drives and Partitions are mentioned and and each one say's windows can't be installed. I've seen partitions mentioned here but not sure what they are.

Thanks for the information.  Do you have a windows 7 product key on the bottom of your laptop?

 If so, you should be able to enter it in the box for license key, if not, assuming your old hard drive has windows 10 home installed, you are selecting the correct option.

Drives and Partitions are mentioned and and each one say's windows can't be installed.

This is very good information, On the screen that says windows cannot be installed, what happens when you press "(show details)"? Do you have that option?

Also, when you start the installer, make your external USB hard drive is NOT connected. It could be the windows installer is not seeing the SSD, and only seeing the external hard drive and trying to install there.

Are you using a USB flash drive as installation media or a dvd?

This also could be a weird GPT vs. MBR compatibility issue, to confirm, knowing the result of the "show details" option would be helpful. You can try googling this error message and\or post back here with any questions.

MatthewK

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Location: Michigan
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #24 on: October 11, 2017, 08:25:36 PM »
Thanks for the words of encouragement guys! Yes, not sure how I missed the product key on the bottom especially since I'm constantly flipping it over to change drives.
    I.P. Daley, I have been using a disk and I did create it from the same link you referenced. Maybe a bad disk like you suggest. It was an old disc I found laying in the bottom of a drawer. I'll pick up some new ones or a 4 gig flash drive to try again.

    Rymmm, as far as the show details it says "windows cannot be installed to this disk. Selected disk is of the GPT Partition type" and  "Cannot be installed to this hard disk space. Partition is a microsoft recovery partition." They all say something similar to this.

   Like I said I'll pick up a flash drive and download the media tool again and give it a go. What do you think? Thanks guys!

rymmm

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #25 on: October 11, 2017, 09:39:20 PM »
    Rymmm, as far as the show details it says "windows cannot be installed to this disk. Selected disk is of the GPT Partition type" and  "Cannot be installed to this hard disk space. Partition is a microsoft recovery partition." They all say something similar to this.

A partition is simply a way in which one hard drive/SSD is split up into smaller usable pieces. Windows be default uses two of these.

I would:
1) Make sure any USB hard drives are unplugged.
2) Follow these directions, http://www.instructables.com/id/Windows-10-Installation/ -EXCEPT in step 9, select any partitions that show up, and press delete. IIRC you can just press next after deleting them and windows should create what it needs.

Post or Google any error messages or issues you might have.

Some troubleshooting suggestions:

1) If you have the same issue,  try holding F12 while turning on the laptop, or pressing F12 immediately following powering it on. You should hopefully get a boot menu, see if the DVD drive boot has two options, one might be called MBR/CMR and one might be called EFI\UEFI after the name of the dvd drive. If one fails, try the other option.

2) If that fails, try entering the system bios and changing boot mode.. https://aps2.toshiba-tro.de/kb0/TSB2B03F30002R01.htm

AccidentialMustache

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 73
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #26 on: October 11, 2017, 09:43:58 PM »
With win10, you *should* be able to skip the product key if it was previously upgraded to/running win10. It *should* reactivate itself against Microsoft's servers when it detects a sufficiently similar host configuration to one that was in their DB.

I did use the "s" word there though, so YMMV, but I recall this working on a laptop of ours.

MatthewK

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 44
  • Location: Michigan
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #27 on: October 12, 2017, 12:06:12 PM »
Success!! The problem were Partitions on step 9 of install. Rymmm once I deleted those as you suggested I was able to install. Thanks for all the help and words of encouragement especially Rymmm and I.P. Daley. This laptop seems quicker and is much more quiet, with the old drive in it sounded like it was spinning all the time. Glad I didn't pitch it, It was a $75 investment which I'll take any day over $300 plus. This community is awesome and I'm glad to be a part of it, thanks again!!

Matthew

Daley

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3626
  • Location: Cow country. Moo.
  • Got that mustache feeling.
    • Technical Meshugana
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #28 on: October 12, 2017, 01:21:54 PM »
Congrats, Matthew, I knew you could do it. Sometimes you just have to take a step back and make sure all the proper steps were taken.

Now you have a better feeling for how to properly reinstall Windows in the future, how to do hard drive upgrades/repairs on other existing machines, and you get to keep a system you're already familiar with that can run circles around and do far more tasks with than some flimsy internet appliance wholly dependent upon sacrificing all your data to the Googleplex to use - all for a fraction of the price.

That's a win on multiple fronts worth celebrating!
Hi, I'm Daley, the Howard Cosell of MVNOs and the Technical Meshugana. I'm also the author of the Frugal Communications Guide and our own Superguide.

boognish

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 124
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #29 on: October 12, 2017, 04:16:24 PM »
cool thread, good job dudes.

Mariposa

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 167
  • Location: NYC
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #30 on: October 12, 2017, 08:03:13 PM »
Agree. Excellent thread. This community is so helpful.

I just put an EVO 850 into my old MBP. I had a hard drive enclosure lying around, though. Now I'm going to keep my computer until it physically melts.

rymmm

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 19
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #31 on: October 12, 2017, 10:15:29 PM »
Glad you got it working!

acroy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1469
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Dallas TX
    • SWAMI
Re: time for a new laptop
« Reply #32 on: October 13, 2017, 12:11:41 PM »
Congratulations!

Apologies for my lack of faith. I am reasonably techie and have struggled worse with simpler tasks; thus I thought your efforts doooomed. Perhaps I am not as techie as I think I am ;)
SWAMI (Satisfied Working Advanced Mustachian Individual) 1 stash, 1 DW, 7 Mini MM's...
God, Family, Country. Everything else is details.