The simplest way to run two hard disks in the same PC is to have a dual-boot start-up menu. Using a switch to flick between the two can lead to loss of data
Q My son-in-law recently helped me upgrade my PC to install a bigger hard disk. I can still access data stored on the old hard disk, which contains Windows XP, but there are times when I need to use some of the software applications it holds, too.
To do so at the moment, I remove the side of the PC’s case and physically switch the connecting cables: in this way, the old drive is detected first and Windows XP launches accordingly.
I wonder if it’s possible to do this differently. Perhaps someone has invented a simple physical switch? Both drives use Sata connections.
A Having exchanged a few emails with you we know that you aren’t particularly interested in other solutions, such as a dual-boot start-up menu or changing the drive boot order in the PC’s Bios.
Our answer, then, is that while we have seen such physical switches in the past, they are not widely available – and we would anyway find it difficult to recommend such devices. The reason for their limited popularity is that they are inventions that carry significant risk in use.
In simple terms, flicking the switch is akin to cutting power to the drive: doing it at the wrong time could lead to data loss.
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