Replace motherboard without reinstalling Windows

By steeve ยท 13 replies
Nov 9, 2010
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  1. i want to replace my motherboard without reinstalling windows (xp non-oem).
    microsoft offers a method to do this:;en-us;824125

    in brief, the method is:

    From the Windows CD, select Install Windows XP and then Upgrade
    Follow the instructions on the screen until the computer begins to restart.
    Just as the computer begins to restart, turn off the computer and replace the motherboard
    Turn on the computer, and then allow the upgrade to continue.
    Setup installs the HAL, the IDE controller drivers, and any other drivers that the new motherboard must have.
    After the upgrade is completed, reinstall any service packs or hotfixes

    i have also seen other methods which involve replacing all specific mobo drivers with generic ones, then changing the mobo and installing the new drivers manually. like this one:

    any advice on which might be a better method??
  2. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Please provide more details on the motherboard.
    Microsoft's way is basically automated and might not work if the change is too significant.
    The other one basically wants you to get rid of as much system specific portions of windows so that you you'll (hopefully) have less trouble. Really, it's kind of a tossup, things like this are quite unpredictable, but I'd think the second link would have a better chance. Don't go do it right away based on my opinion, I may just be spewing nonsense.
    A fresh install is always better.

    BTW why are you changing?
  3. steeve

    steeve TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 146

    it's a way overdue upgrade
    my current board is an asus K8V-VM with a sempron 3000 cpu
    i'm replacing it with an asus M4A88TD-M EVO with a phenom II X4 955
    quite exciting!

    i know you are right about the fresh install - it's just that i did one not long ago and i have just got the system perfect - and a lot of software installed...
  4. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +117

    I personally would do a fresh install, thats quite a change, and it'll certainly be less stressful for you to format the hard disk and start again with a fresh copy.

    It might also be quicker, especially if you factor in the time spent trying to remove old drivers and then re-configure the old OS.
  5. steeve

    steeve TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 146

    you are probably right

    and also factoring in the time spent trying to fix things that didn't quite work and then eventually reinstalling anyway!

    been there before :(
  6. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Indeed, sort of a big jump, but don't lose hope!
    Worst case is that it doesn't work out, and you reinstall anyway. Shouldn't take more than an hour or so.
  7. steeve

    steeve TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 146

    i actually have 2 machines about to be upgraded, so, based on your good advice, i have decided to do one with a fresh install and the other (my backup machine) without re-installing. will keep you posted...
  8. steeve

    steeve TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 146

    ok, the no-reinstall method didn't really work out - i could only boot into safe mode. probably could have figured something out, but a fresh install seemed more appealing. new system looking good so far

    (ps the old machine was a dual boot system and ubuntu wouldn't start either)
  9. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +117

    The old system won't boot into Ubuntu once a fresh install had been done, because Windows will have re-written to the MBR, removing the Linux boot loader.

    Throw in the Ubuntu CD and boot to the terminal and re-install the boot loader and you'll be good to go. :)
  10. steeve

    steeve TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 146

    leeky, that wasn't the case - ubuntu wouldn't boot before the fresh install of windows. actually it didn't totally fail to boot, but there were config issues which i decided not to deal with because i feel its time for a new flavour - mint maybe?

    maybe next time i'll look into sysprep
  11. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +117

    Sorry Steeve, I assumed you were meaning it wouldn't work having done what you did, as opposed to it not working prior to that point.

    I like Linux Mint, but its a personal taste like all distros are. I like the fact it blends Ubuntu, without some of the Ubuntu features I dislike as a Linux user, as well as blending stuff into the mix that I do like - media codecs are one example (but any linux can do that), and the menu setup is nice too.

    Try it on a Live CD and see if you agree. Under the skin its almost identical to Ubuntu, and the same software will work with it as it has in Ubuntu - UbuntuOne is one example; I use it for storage, and although it doesn't come with Linux Mint I was able to easily install then configure it for use once again, just like in Ubuntu.
  12. steeve

    steeve TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 146

    thanks for that, Leeky. i just feel that ubuntu has become a bit mainstream for me. i will give mint a try. i also lean toward debian and its solid reliable feeling, but it lacks the cutting edge...i've also dabbled in arch which i like but one can spend a lot of time...

    i had a few distros lined up on virtual box, which is great, but would prefer to have one (or two) as real installs
  13. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 3,797   +117

    Linux Mint is available using a Debian back-end as well if you prefer to use that.

    Click me to see.
  14. steeve

    steeve TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 146

    a nice selection they have. is mint 10 ubuntu-driven, then?

    not an easy choice to make. also which desktop...mmm..

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