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Moving a Windows Install or Swapping Motherboards Without a Clean Install

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by crjdriver, Jun 1, 2009.

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  1. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator Thread Starter

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    Let me start out by saying a clean install is the better way to go; however there may be some instances where a motherboard swap without having to reinstall is preferred. If you are like me and want to avoid all of the custom settings, shared drives, etc; then this option can save a LOT of time.
    Recently I did this task on my own network storage system or home server. Some more modern parts became available to me for doing a build. Not only was the motherboard swapped, the system drive was cloned from an ide drive to a more modern sata drive. Here is how you go about swapping boards without a clean install.
    This will work on both sata and ide type drives however if you have sata and the sata controller mode is set to AHCI or Raid, you may have problems. If your sata controller mode is set to ahci, you can attempt to swap to native ide in the system bios before beginning this task. If it boots using native ide, then you should be able to do the swap. If it does not boot when changing the controller mode, then you are out of luck.
    The old motherboard was a NForce4 with a single core AMD FX-55. The new board was an Epox 945 intel chipset with a Pentium D 940. It does not get much more different than those two chipsets/cpus.

    With the old board still installed, do the following. During this procedure, DO NOT reboot. Tell the system later for the reboot.
    1 Uninstall any software that is dependent on the old board. This would be things like onboard sound driver, onboard nic driver, or any monitoring software.

    2 Uninstall your anti-virus or if possible set it to not start with windows. You can reinstall or reconfig once done.

    3 Open Device manager and select IDE/ATAPI controller. Open and right click the first on. Go properties>update driver. Have the wizard show all compatible drivers so you can choose. Select standard ide driver. Repeat for each of the controllers listed. Note this is the most important part of the procedure. If you want the system to boot with the new board, you must change all of the controllers listed to standard ide.

    4 While in device manager, remove devices dependent on the old board. This would be things like floppy controller, sound controller, etc. If you miss one here, no big deal; it is the atapi controllers that are really important.

    5 Once done with the above, shutdown and do the motherboard swap.

    Note if you are going to replace the hard drive with a more modern sata drive, now is when you clone the old drive to the new one. I went through this as well and as always Acronis True Image performed flawlessly. If you are not cloning to a new drive, then skip right to powering ON the new system.
    From this point on, reboot when prompted.

    Power ON and enter the bios. Set time, date, boot order and any other custom settings you need. Check your temps. Once done, save settings and restart. When windows boots, it will find new devices and load any native drivers for the new hardware. Once it is complete, reboot when prompted. Now install your drivers in this order. Note many newer boards come with a support CD/DVD that will automate this process for you. If you do not have this option, then install in this order;

    1 Install chipset/motherboard driver

    2 Install sound driver

    3 Install network driver

    4 Reinstall your video driver.

    5 If going from a single core cpu to a multi or dual core, you will also need to change to a multi cpu in device manager. This is under computer in device manager. Open it and right click properties>update driver. Again have it show all compatible. Choose ACPI multi processor.

    6 Reinstall your AV software or reconfg to start with windows.

    If using XP or later ver of windows, you will need to reactivate windows. With Win2K, this is not necessary.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2016
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  3. rimzan

    rimzan

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    Very informative thanks for posting
     
  4. lisaruss1

    lisaruss1

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    say ,i have a sata drive w/vista using VIA CHIPSET 8237 ,i need to use that drive with a new motherboard,VIA CHIPSET 7142, PROKS ARE A INTEL 4/3.0 AND GOING TO A AMD 2.8, what are my odds,and what can you tell me that would help w/out reload of windows ?
     
  5. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator Thread Starter

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    If you follow the directions, you have a very good chance of not having to reinstall or do a repair install.
     
  6. lisaruss1

    lisaruss1

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    Thanks for your edvise,hope it works ,cause the vista program was pre loaded when i got it ,i guess if it dont ill put good ol xp on it !
     
  7. LargeGnT

    LargeGnT

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    Thanks for this. I'm going to replace my current IDE boot motherboard for a SATA boot mobo sometime soon and this has given me hope that I may not have to spend several days inventorying software and reinstalling it (even though I know it is the right thing to do).
    As a point of clarification, I assume that you mean for the clone of the IDE drive to the SATA drive to take place before step 5 - "shutdown and do the motherboard swap".
    I'm not trying to be pedantic (honest), I just want to be sure I correctly interpret your very useful procedure.
     
  8. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator Thread Starter

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    No. Do it in the order in which posted. You are swapping the mb however you are booting the system from the acronis boot CD. The os installed on the old drive will never "See" the new board until you finish with the clone process. Do be sure CD is set to the first boot device in the bios.

    When you are done with the clone process, then again shutdown and pull the old drive. Now pw ON the system with just the new sata drive. Windows will load any native drivers it has; you must now install chipset, etc.
     
  9. LargeGnT

    LargeGnT

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    Many thanks for your swift and helpful reply. I haven't used Acronis True Image so hadn't properly appreciated how it fitted into the sequencing.

    I've just realised/recalled that the free Maxtor's MaxBlast and Seagate's DiskWizard are Acronis TrueImage "Lite" which is useful for Maxtor users like me.
    Thanks again.
     
  10. CJS23

    CJS23

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    Thank you!!
     
  11. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator Thread Starter

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  12. Crazy10

    Crazy10

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    Just curios, would the same still apply to Vista/7/8/8.1?
     
  13. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator Thread Starter

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    I can tell you I just moved a win7 enterprise install from a z68 chipset asus mb with a 2500k to an amd 990fx chipset asus board with a fx8350. No problem at all.
     
  14. Crazy10

    Crazy10

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    Good to hear. Does this save you buying another license for a OEM copy of Windows?
     
  15. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator Thread Starter

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    No. You cannot move an oem copy of windows. OEM type license lives and dies with the original hardware ie mb. If you install a new board in a dell, hp, whatever, you have to purchase a new copy of windows. In addition, you do understand that you would also have to reactivate windows since a board swap will trigger the need for activation.
     
  16. Rockn

    Rockn

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    I would hazard a guess that most users on this forum have OEM installations of Windows. You should probably preface this in your How-To
     
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