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How to change a motherboard or move a hard drive with windows XP installed. Option #2

We all know that moving a hard drive from one computer to another has been somewhat complicated by Microsoft in the Windows XP versions. Still, upgrading your computer without formatting your hard drive and then reinstalling Windows XP is still something that can be done. If you want to change your motherboard or move your drive to a whole new machine it can be done. This is the second installment in a series of articles on just how to upgrade your computer without reinstalling windows from scratch.
If your computer died and you had to change the motherboard (mainboard) in your computer then this will not help you. You will need to carefully follow the instructions HERE in OPTION #1 or HERE for new OPTION #3. If you have not started your upgrade yet then this should (no promises here) get you up and going in a short period of time without the hassle of reloading Windows.
Read the entire article before attempting to do this. If you choose to attempt the suggested information in the articles, I take no responsibility for any issues or problems you may encounter. The information below has worked for me on more than one occasion and I write the steps down as I do them on a test machine in my shop. If it didn't work for me I don't publish it on the site. 

Make a Duplicate of your hard drive!!! So if the process doesn't work right, you can make another copy and try again.

Before you start pulling apart your system you need to boot the system into safe mode. You can do this by using the F8 Key. You will be given choices on how you want to start Windows. Use the arrow keys on the keyboard to select safe mode. You do not want the one that has networking you want to go into the safe mode that has the least amount of support you can get to.

What you want to do now is get rid of all of your hardware settings listed in the system.
You can do this with the following steps:

Click: START
Open: SYSTEM (if you do not see system, make sure you are using classic view)
Click the HARDWARE tab

You will now see a list of hardware that Windows sees in your system.

There should be at least 3 items shown in this section. Find the one that says the type of controller you have, mine is an Intel (R) 82801EB Ultra ATA Storage controller.
(The other 2 should just be listed as: Primary IDE Channel and the other should be listed as a: Secondary IDE Channel.)

Now right click on your storage controller and then choose update driver.

The hardware update wizard should come up. It will ask if you want to connect to the internet to find drivers. Put a dot in the No, not this time

Click: NEXT.

Choose: Install from a list or specific loacation.

Click: NEXT

Choose: Don't search I will choose the driver to install

Click: NEXT

Click: Standard IDE/ATAPI controller.

( If you do not see Standard IDE/ATAPI controller,  Uncheck the box that says: Show compatible hardware.)

Click: NEXT

The system will set the controller to Standard and ask if you wish to restart the computer. DO NOT RESTART YOUR COMPUTER.

One at a time you need to click on the + next to each category and delete the item/s in that category.

While you are deleting items in each category you may be asked to restart Windows. DO NOT RESTART YOUR COMPUTER!!! or you will have to start over again.

When I delete items in the system I normally use the mouse to select the item I want to delete then use my other hand on the delete and enter keys on the keyboard. When you select an item in a category then click delete, Windows will ask if you are sure you want to uninstall that item. The default answer is normally the OK button so I just hit enter. It goes pretty fast this way. DO NOT DELETE THE IDE ATA/ATAPI CONTROLLERS

You must delete everything windows will let you delete. EXCEPT THE IDE ATA/ATAPI CONTROLLERS

NOTE: You can not delete a category! The category will disappear after you have removed the items in that category. 

Once you have removed everything that Windows will allow you to remove,

Click: START
Click: Shut off computer
Click: Shut Down.
Once your computer has shut off you can unplug the hard drive and then move it to your new system or do the upgrade to your old one. When you boot up the computer the first time Windows will now recognize your new hardware and should not be to bothersome other than wanting to load the new drivers and Windows will probably need to be reactivated.

 I have noticed some glitches in Windows that have been moved from one system to another without reinstalling the operating system from scratch. This is part of why Microsoft made it more difficult to put your drive into a system that is different than the one the drive came out of. (there is that money thing too I'm sure) If you do notice a real problem then go to PART 1 of this article and go through the steps that outline reinstalling the operating system over the top of itself to repair any missing or corrupt files. This will also remove any Microsoft updates and service packs you may have in your system and you will have to download and install them again.


 Even if you mess up windows you should still have your information on your hard drive like pictures and documents. The reason I like to get the drive from an old system working with a new system is the fact that this process described above takes about an hour or less (depending on your system speed) and if you have a lot of programs to reinstall and get updated and bring your whole system back to the way you like it, can take a whole weekend.

I don't know about you, but that's just too time consuming for me if I can avoid it.

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