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  Topic : [Sharing]Installing SSD on G73jh New Topic
GSF
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Posts : 8
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Tech Points : 26
From: United States
Posted:4/3/2010 4:17:00 PM # 1
Hello fellow owners. I got my G73jh and ordered a 64GB SSD to improve performance. Installing and using an SSD was far from trivial due to the lack of a REAL win7 install disc.

I'll first outline the steps that *SHOULD* work to get you up and running with your SSD on this machine WITHOUT having to pirate win7 or buy a retail copy. After this I'll explain some of why this has to be done...

First you need a way to alter the partition table in a broken system, I used LinuxRIP, a bootable linux CD for system recovery.

The steps:
1. Burn the recovery DVD's (6
2. Remove the 500GB hard disk, remove the bracket and flip it to allow your SSD to go where it was and the old drive becomes your second drive. This may not be necessary. If you have 2 HDD's, remove the second one too.
2.5. Enter BIOS ( del key on startup) set the BOOT order for SSD first, ODD second.
3. Boot the recovery DVD and install to your SSD.
3.5. Re-install your 500GB disk to the second port in the laptop. Set up the BIOS boot order to enable your SSD, disable your 500GB.
4. IMMEDIATELY reboot to LinuxRIP, do not try to boot the SSD. Log in as root. Alternately do the below modifications with your partition tool of choice...
4a. Use the command sftp -N4 /dev/sda and set this partition to 0 0 (empty partition) MAKE SURE /dev/sda IS YOUR SDD! It may be /dev/sdb. You can tell by th total size.
4b. DO the same for partition 3
4c. Modify partition 2 so that it spans the rest of the disk instead of 500GB, since your SSD is probably less than 500GB. The syntax is [] [].
4d. Use normal fdisk to make sure the partition table is intact. Make partition 1 bootable ('a' command) and delete partitions 2, 3 and 4 ('d' command). If fdisk gives you a "cannot seek /dev/sda" there was a problem above with sfdisk. Thank God for sfdisk.
4e. Ensure you can mount /dev/sda1 (mount /mnt/sda1) and that the data in here is intact.
4f. Disable bootable partitions in the 500GB drive. I copied everything on there to a backup directory so Windows didn't try to load it as the C: drive.
5. Reboot, your system should boot into the recovery partition and install the system successfully.

I spent about a day on this, reinstalling several times, so this is from memory. I hope this will help save someone else a lot of time and frustration. If these steps don't work perfectly, reply to this post and we can try to work through together, I may have omitted something important. I accept/assume no responsibility whatsoever for your bricked laptop. Just be careful with your recovery partition and recovery DVD's.

Now here is why you have to go through these contortions rather than just reinstalling the system to your new HDD. ASUS, if you're reading, please note that this recovery system SUCKS IMO.

The recovery system is meant for use ONLY with the 500GB disks that ASUS provides with this system. The recovery writes the first 20+GB of the hard drive INCLUDING the boot sector, partition table and recovery data. The big problem here is that the system reads the partition table and thinks the disk is a 500GB disk, mine was 64GB. The first time I tried rebooting into the SSD it corrupted the whole drive. Linux fdisk doesn't work, luckily sfdisk allows us to manually rewrite a corrupt/nonsense partition table.

The other issue I ran into was the Win7 bootcfg crap trying to boot the old hard drive once I reinstalled it. Windows seems to store the drive letter or something on the disk, possibly in "System Volume Information".

It may be easier to just remove everything on the 500GB disk (minus the recovery partition, just in case) to avoid windows confusion. I wanted to keep the integrity of this disk in case something got broke and I needed to boot it quickly.

Good luck to you all, again I hope this saves someone else a bunch of time that I spent.

One last thing, ASUS: PLEASE PROVIDE A REAL RECOVERY SOLUTION!

Best, G

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gsk3rd
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From: United States
Posted:4/7/2010 8:29:00 AM # 2
awesome info!

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Asus G73jh-A1(X2 converted into A1)
Marvic_nl
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From: Netherlands
Posted:4/8/2010 3:24:00 PM # 3
I read it, but it's really not an easy thing to do. I e-mailed ASUS the following, hoping they will give alternative options:

Hello, since you don't put a restore / rescue cd with the G73, I made th asus rescue disc (6 DVD's) of the hidden partition. Problem is I want to upgrade my G73 with a Intel 25X-M SSD of 80 or 160GB but the rescue cd or image on the hidden partition seems useless as it expects an 500GB HD.

So do you have tips how to get the Asus Win7 edition on my SSD? Is there any way to have a backup cd of only win7 premium so I can do a clean install or another Asus cd that works with an SSD (as you deliver also versions with standrd SSD built in)? Thank you for your help.

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G73JH
Marvic_nl
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From: Netherlands
Posted:4/8/2010 9:00:00 PM # 4
I got an answer from ASUS:

Dear Sir,

If you place a SSD disk in your notebook and you want to recover it, then it can be done with your own made recovery disks. Important is that you format your disk as Fat and then it shoudnt be a problem.

Best regards,

Asus TSD

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G73JH
EagleOne
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From: United States
Posted:6/6/2010 5:38:00 AM # 5
Why would you put your original 500GB disk in at all? I would think if there's only one hard disk available that's what the DVD will restore to. Cheers,

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Rob
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From: United States
Posted:6/6/2010 1:32:00 PM # 6
Agreed...I wouldn't bother using the entire recovery system. Just install a fresh copy of Windows 7 (isn't this on recovery disc #1?) onto the SSD and then install the 500gb after that's done. Even if the recovery disc doesn't work like I thought, then it's handy to just have a fresh copy of Windows 7 around for this sort of work.

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EagleOne
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From: United States
Posted:6/6/2010 6:40:00 PM # 7
Well after some testing I determined the recovery disks will only restore properly to the exact same size drive as the one the system came with. Then you can clone the result to the SSD. A really lame approach by ASUS! Using a fresh copy of windows 7 and manually installing all the drivers is another way to go. Cheers,

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Rob
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From: United States
Posted:6/10/2010 8:06:00 PM # 8

Quote:
Author: EagleOne Posted: 6/6/2010 6:40:00 PM

Well after some testing I determined the recovery disks will only restore properly to the exact same size drive as the one the system came with. Then you can clone the result to the SSD. A really lame approach by ASUS! Using a fresh copy of windows 7 and manually installing all the drivers is another way to go. Cheers,


Jeez, that really is gay...probably Asus' attempt to prevent piracy and maintain uniformity. Though nobody in their right mind would install any of the junk coming from Asus. I'm glad my old habit of having a fresh copy of an OS lying around isn't a bad habit. All of this recovery disc crap that companies have been doing for awhile is a joke. I preferred the days when you bought a computer, it came with a full version of an operating system and another disc containing drivers. That's it, LOL.

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Billyray
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From: United States
Posted:6/16/2010 4:00:00 AM # 9
Wouldn't it be easier to just clone the drives in your laptop first then restore to new drives?  You might have to resize your partition if you are increasing your disk size.  If you are decreasing your disksize with an ssd, everything should be ok.  I use Clonezilla, it's free.

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Asus Maximus V Extreme (rev. 1.xx and BIOS 1309), I7 3770k CPU with Corsair H80 liquid cooling, 32GB Corsair Vengeance Ram, 256GB OCZ Vertex 4 6GB/S SSD, 1TB Seagate Constellation 7200rpm hdd, Sapphire HD-7970 Dual X Graphics card, Thermaltake Toughpower Grand 1200W psu, Cooler Master HAF-X Tower on wheels. Windows 7 Pro, 64 bit, Office 2010. Asus G73 jh Laptop with 8GB of Ram, 160GB Intel SSD and 500GB Seagate hdd. Windows 7 Pro 64 bit, Office 10
joshuapillar
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Tech Points : 0
From: United States
Posted:7/2/2010 3:49:00 PM # 10

Quote:
Author: Marvic_nl Posted: 4/8/2010 9:00:00 PM

I got an answer from ASUS:

Dear Sir,

If you place a SSD disk in your notebook and you want to recover it, then it can be done with your own made recovery disks. Important is that you format your disk as Fat and then it shoudnt be a problem.

Best regards,

Asus TSD

I assume Asus just means, install the new hard drive, remove the old one, insert the recovery DVDs that were created when you first bought the notebook and boot form the DVD. That's what I'm doing. If this doesn't work well I'll do as others have suggested and restore my old disk, repartition to match the size of my new one and clone. FYI, I use EasyCopy to clone and Windows to partition.

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