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Windows 7: New motherboard installation

01 Feb 2014   #1

Windows 7 64bit
New motherboard installation

Hello guys. In some days I will buy a new motherboard not the same with the old one. My question is do I have to uninstall the drivers from the old motherboard and how can I do it?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

01 Feb 2014   #2

Windows 7 Enterprise 32 bit; Windows 7 Professional 64Bit

Motherboards do not store Drivers. They are kept on the hard drive and are part of the operating system.
If you are referring to settings in the BIOS-they are part of the motherboard and are not an issue either.
In changing motherboards it is wise to do a Clean Install of Windows 7. That way only the drivers needed to run the motherboard (LAN, sound, video, etc) chipset will be installed fresh. We usually use the opportunity to install a new hard disc when doing a rebuild, but that is a personal thing.
Finally-if you want to clear the BIOS on the old motherboard, you can use its clearing pins and/or remove the battery for a period of time. Check the manual for the board to see how this is done in your case.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Feb 2014   #3

Windows 7 64bit

So for changing motherboard you insist me to do a fresh install of Windows. Am i right?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

01 Feb 2014   #4

Win7 Pro 32-bit, Win8 Pro 32-bit

The problem is that if you do NOT do a fresh install, you'll be booting a hard drive which has drivers for the OLD motherboard, and worst case, will not be able to communicate properly with the hard drive and/or, if you have onboard video, you will not get video, either.

Also, Windows OSs are activated using the serial number on the host hard drive. So, you'll probably have to reactivate this when you get it up and running. You should be able to do that online without a problem, unless this was an OEM installation, in which case, you might NOT be able to reactivate it.

Another approach, which does cost some money, is that both Macrium Reflect and Acronis sell backup/restore products that allow you to "migrate" an OS installation to different hardware. You make an image backup of your old drive, boot from a CD/USB made from the backup product and "restore" the backup to the new drive, reboot from the CD/USB and choose the option to migrate to the new drive. It asks for the drivers for the new motherboard and when you then insert the USB/CD with the drivers, installs them in place of the old drivers. I actually did this using MR and instead of it taking hours to reinstall, reactivate, and reupdate the applications from a new install, it took only a few minutes to install the new drivers.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Feb 2014   #5
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 X64 (Windows 10, 8.1, Linux Mint, Windows XP and others in VM)

When installing to a new motherboard, you are always better off doing a clean install. It can avoid many problems other methods can cause. Another alternative is sysprep (Windows 7 Installation - Transfer to a New Computer) which can work, but you will have to re activate windows again. I suggest reading the whole tutorial before starting if you decide to use it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Feb 2014   #6

Windows 7 64bit

I also think that it is better to do a fresh installation to be sure. But another problem is that i dont know if microsoft will let me activate the windows again with the same activation code after the motherboard upgrade. Thats my problem to be real. The re-installation of windows is easy.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Feb 2014   #7

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 8 Pro x64 dual boot

Usually it's just a robo-call to Microsoft and you're good to go. If you have an OEM version of windows, you may have to talk to a MS rep and explain things. They're usually pretty good in my experience. I changed both my CPU and mobo because my mobo quit on me, and it was just an explanation as to what happened and I was fine.

If you have a retail version of Windows it *should* activate just fine.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Feb 2014   #8

Windows 7 64bit

At this time I dont have the pc to check if it is OEM version. I will do it as soon as possible.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Feb 2014   #9

Windows 7 ultimate 64-bit

I agree with some of the other posters; in that when you install a fresh new motherboard; it is ALWAYS best to do a complete clean install of the o.s. and then install the drivers for the hardware one by one. Hopefully in doing that you wont encounter any issues.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Feb 2014   #10

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 8 Pro x64 dual boot

I've done an upgrade without a fresh install and never had any issues, but I agree. I think it's best to do a fresh install with a new mobo. I think I was just lucky.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 New motherboard installation

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