Solved How to unscramble a dual-boot system

nitewulf

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I need some advice on how to unscramble this scenario. I upgraded in-place from Windows 10 to 11, but without keeping files, apps, etc. I ended up with some issues and against my better judgment decided to reinstall using an ISO on usb . Because I have 3 1TB SSDs in my system, I accidentally selected the wrong one for the second installation. The original C drive from the first installation is now "J" and the new one for the second installation is now "C". See pictures.

Upon startup, I'm presented with a dual-boot menu and both open to their respective Windows 11 desktops. My ideal situation now would be to somehow switch drive J with drive c. I would then reformat what is now C and use it for more storage. C now shows it has the boot info, but J has the UEFI and recovery partitions. If this is too complicated, I can just leave things as they are as I have adequate storage,. Disregard Drive M in the pictures; it's just a mechanical storage drive.Screenshot 2021-11-09 164637.pngScreenshot 2021-11-09 164949.png
 

My Computer

System One

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    Windows 11 (beta)
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    i9-9900KF
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    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
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    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
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NavyLCDR

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I am really confused. Which disk number do you want the computer from? Disk 0 or Disk 2?
 

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  • Operating System
    Windows 11
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    PC/Desktop
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    Homebuilt
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3800XT
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Crosshair VII Hero (WiFi)
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Education
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    Dell Inspiron 7773
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    Intel i7-8550U
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    32GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Geforce MX150
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    Realtek
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Scott

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From what I understand, you want what occupies New Volume C on Disk 0 to occupy volume J on Disk 2?
if so, you could clone C to J using a program like Macrium Reflect Free.


In Disk Management, you would need to right-click C and select shrink volume (the source can't be larger than the destination)
 

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My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Win 11 Pro 21H2 22000.348
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    PC/Desktop
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    Home Built
    CPU
    Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-8700 CPU @ 3.20GHz 3.19 GHz
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    ASUS Prime Z370-P II LGA1151
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    CORSAIR Vengeance LPX 8GB DDR4 3000 (x4)
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    Creative Labs PCIe Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium (dan_k drivers)
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    Samsung LT27A300ND/ZA 27"
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    SAMSUNG 970 EVO M.2 2280 1TB PCIe Gen3. X4, NVMe (x2)
    SAMSUNG 870 EVO Series 2.5" 2TB SATA III (x2)
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    CORSAIR HX Series HX750
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nitewulf

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Thanks for the replies, guys. Let me see if I can explain this a little further. Drive C (Disk 0) is the second installation of Windows 11 that I don't want as it's on a slower SSD. Drive J (Disk 2) is the faster NvME SSD and is the original copy of Windows 11 and used to be the C drive. What I'm wondering is do both drives have a boot record? In other words, can I boot up to the copy of Windows that's on Drive J (the original installation) and from there simply reformat drive C and use for storage? I obviously don't need 2 copies of Windows 11. I've never tried to reformat a drive C (disc 0) from within Windows, but if I've booted up to Windows using Drive J, it sounds like it might be possible, but I wanted to ask you guys first. It looks like C is just one large partition. Once I'm able to reformat C, I can change it's drive letter and J would then become C and the only copy of Windows. Since J is the original installation of Windows 11, I assume it would have the boot record and all the files it needs to boot. If I can't reformat C within Windows even booting up from the other drive, could I do it in diskpart> So, I don;' want to move data from C to J, I want to reformat C altogether. Hope I've explained this better.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
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    EVGA 750
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    Fractal 5
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    Fractal Celsius S24
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    Corsair K55
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    Razer
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TigerTom

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Start Windows on your faster NVME disk through the bootmanager. Windows will then automatically assign drive letter C: for it. From there you can then format the other drive.
The bootmanager itself can be removed later by booting into WinPE eg from the installation media and running some appropriate commands from a command window. I don't have the exact commands at hand, was something with fixmbr .. but it will depend if you have GPT or MBR. Probably someone else here in the forum can help further with that - or maybe there is even a tutorial from @Brink

bzw recently I had the same with two parallel Win11 installs, one was on a SSD, one on a HDD. Wanted just to keep the one on the SSD adn also got rid of the boot manager screen so now PC starts with the SSD :)
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • Operating System
    W10 Enterprise LTSC
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    custom
    CPU
    i7-2700K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte GA-P67A-D3-B3
    Memory
    24GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    MSI GeForce RTX2060 Super
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    onboard
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    Samsung curved
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    FHD
    Hard Drives
    Samsung EVO870 SSD 1TB
    Seagate Barracuda HDD 8TB
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    be quiet 550W
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    CoolerMaster
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    be quiet PURE ROCK SLIM BK008
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    KLIM Domination k852
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    Logitech standard cordless
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    10/1 DSL (the fastest line speed available here...)
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    W10 GUI heavily modified with Stardock Blinds "7 for 10" skin and Startmenu.
    No MS Account and no MS apps.
    I upgraded to W10 only for gaming purposes, otherwise I'd kept my beloved W7 Ultimate x64
  • Operating System
    W11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    custom
    CPU
    Intel Core i5-2500
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte PH67A-D3-B3
    Memory
    4GB
    Graphics card(s)
    MSI Geforce 1050Ti
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    onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    FujitsuSiemens 19"
    Screen Resolution
    1280x1024 (oldschool 4:3)
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    Samsung EVO850 SSD 250GB + Samsung 1TB HDD
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    Mars MCNW ATX Gaming
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    be quiet PURE ROCK SLIM BK008
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    oldschool Dell optical wired
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    Dell German 102
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    This is an older PC for testing new OS,
    Furthermore: 4 Dell/HP laptops on Win7 Ultimate x64, used for NAS, Media server, browsing, workshop and sound studio

Brink

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Hello nitewulf, :)

Are you wanting to change the default OS to load at startup?


Afterwards, you could safely delete the OS you don't want.

 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 980 PRO M.2,
    1TB Samsung 970 EVO Plus M.2,
    6TB WD Black WD6001FZWX
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3 wall mounted
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
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    Logitech wireless K800
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    Logitech MX Master 3
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    1 Gbps Download and 35 Mbps Upload
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    Google Chrome
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    Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
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    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    Linksys EA9500 router,
    Motorola MB8611 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G phone
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 2in1
    CPU
    i7-1065G7 3.9 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR4-3200
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel Iris Plus
    Sound Card
    Intel SST
    Monitor(s) Displays
    13.3" 4K UWVA AMOLED multitouch
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    3840 x 2160
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    512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
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    Google Chrome
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    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium

nitewulf

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Hello nitewulf, :)

Are you wanting to change the default OS to load at startup?


Afterwards, you could safely delete the OS you don't want.

Brink, my goal was to get rid of the second installation of Windows 11 and I just fixed it taking the easy way out. I simply removed the older SSD that contained the 2nd installation of Win11 from my computer. I replaced it with a spare SSD I had lying around and that will be for storage. Now I can fool around with the SSD I removed and attach it to a cable and reformat it using diskpart when I have the time. So I'm good to go now except for the dual boot-loader entry and with your tutorial, I'm sure I can figure that out. So now I'm back to my original C drive. Thanks everyone for their help.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
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    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
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    Windows Defender

Brink

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:shawn:
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 980 PRO M.2,
    1TB Samsung 970 EVO Plus M.2,
    6TB WD Black WD6001FZWX
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3 wall mounted
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gbps Download and 35 Mbps Upload
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    Linksys EA9500 router,
    Motorola MB8611 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G phone
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 2in1
    CPU
    i7-1065G7 3.9 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR4-3200
    Graphics card(s)
    Intel Iris Plus
    Sound Card
    Intel SST
    Monitor(s) Displays
    13.3" 4K UWVA AMOLED multitouch
    Screen Resolution
    3840 x 2160
    Hard Drives
    512 GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium

Scott

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Okay, so you just wanted to switch the drive letters around, cool. As for the boot loader, EasyBCD 2.4 can do wonders.
 

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My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Win 11 Pro 21H2 22000.348
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-8700 CPU @ 3.20GHz 3.19 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS Prime Z370-P II LGA1151
    Memory
    CORSAIR Vengeance LPX 8GB DDR4 3000 (x4)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti SC GAMING
    Sound Card
    Creative Labs PCIe Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium (dan_k drivers)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung LT27A300ND/ZA 27"
    Screen Resolution
    1920 X 1080
    Hard Drives
    SAMSUNG 970 EVO M.2 2280 1TB PCIe Gen3. X4, NVMe (x2)
    SAMSUNG 870 EVO Series 2.5" 2TB SATA III (x2)
    PSU
    CORSAIR HX Series HX750
    Case
    Antec Dark Phantom DP502 FLUX
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro Series H60 AIO
    Keyboard
    Logitech MK 320
    Mouse
    Logitech MX 1000 Laser
    Internet Speed
    200Mbs
    Browser
    Firefox
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    Winows Defender
    Other Info
    UEFI, Secure Boot, TPM 2.0
    MR 8 HE

nitewulf

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Thread Starter
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I had no trouble fixing the bootloader. I did find that I was missing a couple of apps from the Microsoft Store and I ended up having to do a system restore back a couple of days, but I'm back up and running and everything appears to be working normally.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
    Browser
    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender

jimbo45

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Hi there
OK I see you've fixed it -- but for others -- or next time the easy way is to boot say winpe or macrium free stand alone recovery media then
1) in the command mode type bcdedit (macrium free has a console option on bottom taskbar), winpe boots into console mode if using winpe media.
2) type bcedit with no parameters - this will display a list of the OS'es so look for the OS you want to get rid of -- it will be in between the { } with either {default} or { a long guid }
3) copy the guid and the {} so copy the whole string -- if you type manually you will probably make a mistake(ctrl C)
4) bcdedit /delete {the guid or default} - use ctrl-v to paste the guid string including the {} into the command after the /delete
5) job done

Don't do it from your running version of windows because that can hose it all up !!!! although it might work. It's safer to use winpe or something like macrium free to do this.

BTW with bcdedit you can also change default OS or change the description to a more useable name than just say W11 if you have several versions etc

bcdedit /set {the guid} description "Your own description" . This will appear in the boot menu on your next boot.



Q.E.D !!

Cheers
jimbo
 
Last edited:

My Computer

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  • Operating System
    Windows XP,7,10,11 Linux Arch Linux
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    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    2 X Intel i7

nitewulf

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Thread Starter
Local time
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10
Thanks, jimbo. I guess I got a little cold feet. I will study up on bcdedit and I also want to download Macrium Reflect as I need to have periodic good backups of my system. I have 2 old core 2 duo laptops running Windows 10 that I use as test machines and backups. The first thing I want to do is wipe that 1TB SSD I removed from the computer using an external SATA cable. Yhanks for yours and everyone else's help.
 

My Computer

System One

  • Operating System
    Windows 11 (beta)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self-Built
    CPU
    i9-9900KF
    Motherboard
    Asus ROG STRIX Z390-E Gaming
    Memory
    G.Skill DDR4-2132 32GB XMP 2.0
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus Turbo GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Sound Card
    Creative Soundblaster G6
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell P2715Q
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 970 Evo 1TB x 2
    PSU
    EVGA 750
    Case
    Fractal 5
    Cooling
    Fractal Celsius S24
    Keyboard
    Corsair K55
    Mouse
    Razer
    Internet Speed
    300
    Browser
    Edge, Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
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