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Swapping out faulty motherboard

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#1 doveman


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Posted 12 August 2012 - 05:58 PM

So it seems my Biostar TA790GXBE motherboard http://www.biostar.c...on.php?S_ID=419 has died :(

All the caps all look fine to me. I've tested the PSU and RAM on another PC and I'm planning to test the CPU on my Dad's PC, as he's only got the stock cooler so it will be a lot easier to swap the CPU than on my boards which have massive third-party heatsinks bolted onto custom backplates, which means I'd have to disconnect everything and remove the board from the case.

So assuming the CPU's OK I'll just have to get another board. I'm hoping if I get another ATI chipset board Windows 7 won't put up too much of a fight and will just reinstall any required drivers. The ATI motherboard one's shouldn't need changing/reinstalling and that covers the AHCI driver which tends to be the major source of problems when changing boards I think. The onboard graphics will still be ATI and the onboard sound Realtek, so they'll probably be OK although I might need to reinstall the drivers for both if they're different chipsets.

Are there any other things to be aware of or is there a procedure/guide for doing this or should it be fairly straightforward? I'm not going to get the exact same chipset (790GX) but should any ATI chipset board be OK?

On the hardware side, I've been using a Minja CPU heatsink but as you can see this blocks two of the RAM slots http://img69.imagesh.../fanziptie1.jpg . I'm trying to find a fairly cheap topdown cooler as it will be easier for my brother to replace the fan if that ever needs doing. I've got a Thermalright SI-128 on one of my boards that I could use and get something else for that but even that blocks the two nearest RAM slots, which isn't ideal in case my brother ever needs to add RAM to them (or replace the installed RAM, I know some boards, like my MSI990FX-GD80 http://www.msi.com/p...90FXA-GD80.html require you to use the slots 1 and 3 first). I'm not sure if it's possible to orientate the SI-128 with the heatpipes up on AM3+ boards, as shown on an Intel board here http://www.silentpcr...e719-page4.html but I don't think there's enough room above the board in my case to do this anyway. It might be possible to have the heatpipes facing down as long as they don't clash with the NB heatsink but again that depends whether the AM3 mounting allows for that orientation.

#2 RoyM


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Posted 14 August 2012 - 02:57 AM

Hi doveman

It appears you have a good grasp on what needs to be done.
With Win7 you should have good luck with your planned move, and hopefully
the OS will boot with new hardware and it will reconfigure/install new drivers
for the new hardware.

You may run into a snag with the old installed drivers and the new hardware,
but highly unlikely. unless of course you are using raid, scsi or hardware
that requires F6 drivers. Since you are sticking with somewhat similar
hardware, you should do ok.

If the move goes off without a hitch, you should be good to go after
loading new drivers.

If you run into problems on first boot in new machine.
You can always try booting to safe mode.

Here are some alternative methods that may work for you.

Using Sysprep

Acronis TrueImage
Backup the Drive with Acronis TrueImage and restore it
to the new drive using the TrueImage Universal Restore.
The Universal Restore plug-in strips the incompatible
drivers and loads the OS generic Drivers instead.
( http://kb.acronis.com/content/2149 ).
Thus after Universal Restore Windows Boots up regardless of the chipset
(hardware) and adjusts most of the drivers.

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