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Advice needed on best practices for upgrading of Mobo, CPU, Memory and GPU under Win7 Ultimate with SSD/HDD

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March 18, 2013 9:17:47 PM

Hello everyone,

I currently have an Abit Quad GT with Intel Core 2 Duo E6300, 8GB Corsair XMS DDR2, EVGA 8800 GTS 386MB, running Win7 in a SSD boot (Crucial M4 120GB) / HDD storage config (Spinpoint F4 2 TB). [I'm going a bit by memory so the specs may be slightly off].

I just purchased ASRock Z77 Pro4 + i5-3570K + 8GB G.Skill Ripjaws (single stick) + Sapphire 7870 XT (Tahiti).

It seems clear to me that I will need to reinstall Windows, which is a slight pain, but OK. However, I am concerned with the SSD/HDD structure because my libraries are pointing to the HDD. I think that in theory I would not lose any data, as I would only format the SSD and other than having to reinstall every application, the data in the HDD should be safe and the process relatively straightforward.

* Is this true?

* Are there any pitfalls I should be aware of?

*What sort of best practices are there to upgrade in modern configurations?

Finally, I'm thinking about upgrading to W8. Any comments on Steam based games compatibility? Please if you will knock W8 down, be kind enough to provide a reason and whether there are acceptable workarounds. I'd rather not have a fight based on likes/dislikes.

Thank you so much in advance.
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March 18, 2013 9:48:15 PM

If you shutdown the computer, take the SSD out, put it in the new build it might work without wiping your SSD clean, but there may be an error because the hardware is changed. If the HDD has only data, and not applications/drivers/OS it SHOULD be straightforward.
As for Win8 I'm happy with Win7 for now, until compatibility issues arise. Win8 is mostly touch-oriented but there is a Windows 7 mode, I believe. If you're comfortable with the UI go for Win8 but Win7 definetly has Steam compatibility.
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March 19, 2013 5:35:47 PM

Matsushima said:
If you shutdown the computer, take the SSD out, put it in the new build it might work without wiping your SSD clean, but there may be an error because the hardware is changed. If the HDD has only data, and not applications/drivers/OS it SHOULD be straightforward.
As for Win8 I'm happy with Win7 for now, until compatibility issues arise. Win8 is mostly touch-oriented but there is a Windows 7 mode, I believe. If you're comfortable with the UI go for Win8 but Win7 definetly has Steam compatibility.


Thanks a lot - this makes sense. I will report back after I receive the mobo. Hopefully I will be abl to mark this as solved :) 

Have you actually performed this type of upgrade before? How did it work for you? Any learnings/things you would do differently if you had to do it again?
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2013 9:02:50 PM

Flavio Kaplan said:
Matsushima said:
If you shutdown the computer, take the SSD out, put it in the new build it might work without wiping your SSD clean, but there may be an error because the hardware is changed. If the HDD has only data, and not applications/drivers/OS it SHOULD be straightforward.
As for Win8 I'm happy with Win7 for now, until compatibility issues arise. Win8 is mostly touch-oriented but there is a Windows 7 mode, I believe. If you're comfortable with the UI go for Win8 but Win7 definetly has Steam compatibility.


Thanks a lot - this makes sense. I will report back after I receive the mobo. Hopefully I will be abl to mark this as solved :) 

Have you actually performed this type of upgrade before? How did it work for you? Any learnings/things you would do differently if you had to do it again?


Yes and no. I have put in a HDD from one computer to another and the data was still there without any changes. However, if that HDD is not the main disk (boot & application disk) and it has programs/drivers/OS on it, and you put it in a system that already has a drive with OS/programs/drivers they may interfere with the OS/programs/data on the main drive. I have experienced this as I tried to install Windows XP on my second drive with my primary drive (with Windows 7) connected, and Windows 7 would not boot and I had to do a Repair Installation for Windows 7. Also, I had to uninstall my wifi card drivers from both XP and 7 and then reinstall them after a driver error which I think was because I had to install drivers seperately for both operating systems.
However, yours should be straightforward as long as there is one OS and the drivers are all installed in the one drive and the HDD is just for data.
Upgrading to Win8
Windows 8 isn't that bad, but some people cannot get used to the touch interface better than others. Windows 7 is still fine.
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