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Hard drive swapping on windows reinstall


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I would like to reinstall xp and I happen to have two hard drive, one of which is empty. I was wondering if I can just install windows on my unused hard drive and then plug in my used hard drive and transfer the files. Can a hard drive with windows installed on it be used as if it were an external hard drive if it is plugged directly in the mobo sata port? How about if I plug it into an external hard drive enclosure?

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If you have a network, just make the hard drive shared and you'll be able to copy the files to the new drive with drag and drop. Without a network, you can install the old hard drive in your new computer, and just access the files on it as your D: drive.

edit, you really don't want to just copy everything, because there's probably a ton of junk on there you can't see, screwed up left over registry crap and such. Just keep the things you have to , then wipe the other drive , and use it until you think it's going bad, unless this is the whole reason your doing this. There are programs out there that will  " clone " your HDD, but hey, I wouldn't do it unless it was a fairly new drive , w/ hardly anything on it.

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