Personally I think you went about this the wrong way. In order to backup, you need to put your data onto something external to the machine. What if your laptop breaks down? how will you fire up the hard drive to get your data off?
Do you have a 2.5 to 3.5 ide adaptor to connect the new laptop hard drive into a pc to recover data?
The easiest solution would have been an external usb hard drive. That's if you need to backup your whole system using norton ghost or something. However, if it's just data, I'm sure a dvd writer would have been sufficient. The data in both these cases is very easy to restore onto any pc or other laptop.