Which devices to delete when switching motherboards?

April 7, 2013 at 17:41:09
Specs: Win7
It's been a while since I've swapped motherboards. There are devices related to the motherboard that must be deleted before booting the new MB. Does someone know where I can find a list of these devices?

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April 7, 2013 at 17:54:53
What you are referring to is something that could be done with Windows 98. If you deleted all the current devices, Windows 98 would reload with default drivers.

However, this is Windows 7 and that method is not available. Your only choice you have is to reinstall the OS, via a repair install at the very least. Even that may not work depending on why type of Windows 7 disk you have, retail or OEM that came with the computer.


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April 7, 2013 at 19:05:45
With 98, deleting the ENUM key under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE with regedit prior to installing a new motherboard would remove all the hardware info. I don't think that will work for later OS's--it doesn't seem like it would be that easy--but if installing the new motherboard will otherwise result in a non-functioning OS I suppose you could try it.

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April 7, 2013 at 19:26:33
It wont work with anything after Widows 98, including Widows XP not least because the ENUM key does not exist in later OSs.

The reason is that later OS are tied to the hardware they were installed on. This was to facilitate the activation that is required with these OSs that is was not needed with Windows 98


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April 7, 2013 at 19:33:31
I know I did this with an XP machine last time and everything worked. There's a sysprep utility that's part of Win7 that will do it all for you but it throws an error message for me so I can't use it -- http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorial...

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April 7, 2013 at 21:12:56
Ahh, no ENUM. I probably should have checked that first. Well, if it had been that easy someone would have figured it out by now.

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April 8, 2013 at 09:54:54
As StuartS mentioned above what you can do depends on the type of Windows that you currently have. If you have an OEM computer that came with Windows pre-installed (SLP type), you can't legally install a different motherboard.

Weather or not it will actually work depends largely on the brand and age.

Post some system specs or model numbers and weather your version of Windows is limited (SLP) or full. Also, what motherboard you are looking at. If the RAM and CPU will be reused you may not have a problem but if all are different then most likely you will.

If you have a full version of Windows then you could uninstall some of the hardware but you will probably still need to perform a repair install. That would keep your personal files and installed programs, but would require reinstalling any updates to Windows.

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April 9, 2013 at 06:37:45
I am moving from a Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-S2H ver 1.1 motherboard to a Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H Z77 ver 1.1 board. I have a Windows 7 Home Premium disk I bought when I upgraded this original system from XP to Win7. Is this what you wanted?

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April 9, 2013 at 14:17:23
Your current MB is an mATX form factor. The new MB is a full ATX form factor, which is larger. Will your case hold a full size ATX motherboard?

The specs are so different you will need to perform a repair installation right off. The new board will probably stop Windows 7 from booting at all.

Something else to watch out for. Before pulling the old board out, boot into the BIOS screens and verify how the drives are configured. There may be 3 different ways which are:

1. IDE compatibility mode

The preferred setting is AHCI.

You may need to set the BIOS in the new board the same way. I am not sure if you set it differently that the repair install will work. It may.

I hope someone else here that knows that answer for sure posts a reply.

You may also need to re-register Windows.

You did not specify what else you are installing. A new graphics card may require a more powerful power supply.

If you supply the remaining hardware specs we can evaluate them too.

Are you using a case from an OEM computer?

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April 15, 2013 at 20:07:59
>Will your case hold a full size ATX motherboard?

Yes. In fact I installed the new board and have found it defective. I'm waiting on a replacement right now.

> 1. IDE compatibility mode
> 2. SATA
> 3. AHCI

> The preferred setting is AHCI.

It's set to IDE compatibility because when I first installed Win7 my C: drive was IDE. All drives are now SATA.

I just tried to reset it to AHCI. This corrupted the boot sector and now I'm having trouble fixing that.

> You did not specify what else you are installing.

I'm not installing anything else & I have a 600 watt PS which the motherboard book says is plenty.

> Are you using a case from an OEM computer?

No. I have an older mid-price ANTEC case.

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April 16, 2013 at 07:22:51
What model is the power supply. 600W in itself means little to nothing.

If your old hard drive was IDE and all drives are now SATA, how did Windows get installed as IDE compatible? If a new install then just start over or try a repair install.

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April 16, 2013 at 10:53:12
The power supply is a Corsair CX600

I don't understand the question. As I said, when I installed Windows 7 the main drive was IDE so I had to use IDE compatible.

Do you know anyway to recover the boot record?

I've tried restoring it using a Paragon recovery disk and also using Widows recovery console. No luck.

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April 16, 2013 at 11:02:49
The question is this. If you are no longer using the IDE drive then how did Windows get on the SATA hard drive and why did you use IDE compatibility mode?

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April 16, 2013 at 11:42:16
Oh. I restored a disk image onto the SATA drive. I really didn't know I needed to change it, but I would have been afraid to anyway because I didn't know what effect it would have on the other drives in the system.

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April 16, 2013 at 16:01:40
Do you have more than one hard drive installed?

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April 16, 2013 at 16:59:15
Yes, I have three SATA drives

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April 17, 2013 at 10:51:37
You may need to change the secondary boot order. Find it on a different screen further back. You need to select WHICH hard drive you want to boot to.

Are these drives all different or all the same?

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April 17, 2013 at 19:36:50
They are all SATA but two of them are an earler version of SATA and the other is the current version. Is that what you are asking?

I'm not sure what you mean by changing the secondary boot order? Do you mean where you set the bios to, for example, boot from the CD/DVD drive first, the floppy drive second and the hard drive next?

I'm not sure what "different screen, further back" means are you talking about a screen in the BIOS and mean past the second screen?

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April 18, 2013 at 08:12:09
After selecting the Hard drive in the boot order there is a second screen that allows you to choose WHICH hard drive to boot to first. Actually, multiple hard drives may be set in the boot order.

This section was added when motherboards with many SATA ports came to market. I have also seen motherboard BIOS settings which have some SATA ports that are intended for secondary drive and do not support a boot device.

The BIOS will automatically default to the last bootable hard drive that was installed but you need to verify which hard drive it is set for. If you assigned a name for a hard drive then that name will appear, otherwise the list will show SATA 0, 1, 2, etc.

In my BIOS, I can tap F11 at start up to bring up that list and choose to boot to a different hard drive than the assigned boot order you are familiar with. Hope this is clearer to you. I can't be more specific because BIOSes are customized by the manufacturer of the board or computer. Some options may not be in use. That said, if you have more than one SATA port that allows you to boot from it, which you do, then that list has to appear somewhere.

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