You can do the cloning within the box and move the drive as suggested. Make sure your BIOS supports the size of the drive you want to buy. I have a personal opinion about Maxtor drives, however. I wouldn't buy one. I service instruments connected to Windows workstations and have seen more Maxtor drives fail within the first year or two than any other brand I've dealt with. Your experience could be different.
I have an HP Pavilion a562n. I get a message when I turn my computer on that says Pri Master Hard Disk: S.M.A.R.T. Status BAD, Backup & Replace. Press F1 for setup F2 to continue. If I press F2,Windows loads and we're in business as usual. Everything I've read says run don't walk to the supply store and get a new hard drive. Currently I have a Maxtor 6Y200P0 200GB UDMA/133 7200RPM 8MB IDE HDD (I think I copied that all right). I'm hoping to be able to clone my hard drive onto a new one as my computer came pre-installed with everything including the OS(Windows XP) so I am without any startup disks. I found a Maxtor 250GB ATA/133 7200RPM 18MB drive online for a decent price. Would this work as a replacement? Also, how difficult would the cloning be if I don't have another computer or external hard drive to use for the process. Someone suggested installing the new hard drive as a slave drive, copying everything over and then moving it to the master slot. Would that work? Keeping in mind I'm not a tech genius on my own, but I'm really good at following directions. That being said, I must admit I've been seeing the message for at least 6 months now. Exactly how desperate is the situation?