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Preparing to upgrade from Pentium 4 to Q6600

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  • CPUs
  • Pentium
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September 13, 2008 3:53:07 AM

My current setup:

OS: Windows XP v. 2002 (Service Pack 3)
Mobo: Asus P5K
BIOS: American Megatrends 0414 5/24/2007
CPU: X86 Pentium 4 3.2Ghz
GPU: Geforce 8600 GTS 256MB DDR3
RAM: 1024MB 333mhz Corsair ddr2
Hard Drive: 200GB IDE PATA
PSU: Antec Truepower Trio

Last year I suffered a ton of computer woes and had to upgrade some parts - You guys can probably guess which ones by my list: Power supply, motherboard, and video card. I also replaced the CPU heatsink and added a whack of fans to the tower.

Now I've just gone and purchased a new CPU, a Q6600, 4 GB of 1066Mhz DDR2, and a SATA2 500GB hard drive.

I've already read about how much of a pain installing a SATA drive is in addition an old IDE one, but my biggest concern is what's going to happen when I boot up with the new CPU. I've been running this old Pentium 4, and I have this optimistic idea that I'll put in the new Quad-Core, boot up, and the BIOS will just figure it out and launch me into speed country. I want to make sure I do this right.

Is there a special way I should approach this scenario? Do I need to set anything in the BIOS before going in, or upon booting with the new CPU? Will I need to do a fresh install of windows, etc? This is my first CPU upgrade, and it's a bit of a doozy (pentium 4 to a quad core).

Also, is there an ideal order i should install these components in? CPU, followed by RAM, or vice versa?

Thanks for any support.

More about : preparing upgrade pentium q6600

September 13, 2008 5:18:03 AM

I would start over. Swap the cpu and ram, then install windows on the new hard drive. Make sure you set the old IDE drive as a slave when you're re-installing.
September 13, 2008 8:22:17 AM

That's probably good advice. i'm heavily considering it. Here are the hiccups I'm anticipating:

Activating Windows. Windows will put up a fit because I've done it so many times. If I can navigate their labyrinth and convince them that all I've done is upgrade my hardware, I'm sure it'll be fine. I'm not totally sure this will even be possible though.

Setting the old IDE drive as a slave. It's a fat-ribbon PATA drive, and the new one's SATA2. Is this even possible? What should I have the IDE drive's jumper set to in this case?

I think what I might do is replace RAM and CPU, put in the new SATA2, completely remove the old hard drive, and then do a fresh install. Then shut down, reconnect the old hard drive, and boot into the BIOS to confirm that it's booting from the SATA and not the IDE. Once into windows, reformat the IDE and be done.

But again, I'm not sure what to set the jumper to on the old drive in that scenario.
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September 13, 2008 8:43:08 AM

If your IDE drive is the only pata drive then set it to master
September 13, 2008 9:02:12 AM

You should be able to just swap out the CPU/RAM. But make sure you have the most updated bios for CPU support.

If the P4 had HT then it should have the right HAL driver installed for the OS. HT bascially tricks the OS thinking there is more the one core. So if it was working with HT, then reinstalling windows shouldn't be needed, but then a fresh install can work wonders as far as system response.

Make sure you first backup anything you can't live without, before attempting the upgrade..
September 13, 2008 2:08:31 PM

It is possible to use both IDE and Sata. Either set the IDE to slave or set the sata to boot first in the bios. Once you've reformatted, it doesn't matter if it's slave or master.
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September 14, 2008 10:04:29 PM

The only thing I will suggest (since everything else has been done already) is to make sure you take the jumper off of the back of the SATA drive. If you don't it will run at SATAI speeds or 150MB/s (1.5Gb/s) instead of SATAII speeds of 300MB/s (3Gb/s).

I forgot to and after I pulled the jumpers off both my HDDs the speed increase was nice.
September 16, 2008 9:25:24 PM

Very cool... Thanks for the help everyone, the new equipment has just come in today, so I'm going to take the plunge and report back.
September 17, 2008 7:31:46 AM

Installation went okay... I'm now running into a whack of software problems, mostly involving drivers either missing, corrupted, or not properly installing. Getting pretty annoying. Currently trying to deal with the audio drivers...

It's weird, I remember when I bought this motherboard new, the first time I booted into windows, it just logged on and automatically installed every available driver. I seem completely unable to perform the same online automatic driver updates this time. Right now it's the "audio device on high definition audio bus" that's killing me. I put in the ASUS CD with drivers, and it finds the audio drivers and installs them, but I immediatley afterwards get an error saying that the drivers aren't properly configured, and it stubbornly refuses to let me update or reinstall the drivers.

On a reboot, it just starts over. "new hardware found", "audio device on high definition audio bus", etc. No dice so far.
September 17, 2008 1:23:55 PM

Might need to go into safe mode (F8). Depending on the driver software installation, look for it in the add/remove programs, as well as go in to the device manager in safe mode and uninstalling/delete the hardware.

I know the annoy problem usually is when windows tries to install drivers when the actual setup program is running. I normally cancel out anything windows says and just use the software setup for the driver. That way you don't have windows trying to install a generic MS driver while the actual setup driver installation is doing it at the same time.
September 17, 2008 4:10:45 PM

yeah, I know what you mean - you'll be in the middle of an installation, when windows pops up its own new installation window. Amazing how obnoxious that can be.

In this case, I have no idea what's causing the problems, but somehow I got them solved (in the short term at least). Printer drivers and audio drivers proved to be a complete nightmare. They just wouldn't install. If they seemed to install, on a reboot they'd be gone.

the way I solved the audio problem: downloaded the drivers from the realtek website, uninstalled microsoft's UAA audio drivers, then went into the "broken" realtek driver in the device manager and did a "driver update", scanning automatically for drivers. It picked up the downloaded one and installed it.

This time, on a reboot, everything was working. For some ungodly reason. No other combination of uninstalling and re-installing and rebooting worked, either with downloads or off the ASUS cd, but this one did.

As for printer drivers, no matter what I did, I could NOT get it to plug-and-play. Installing drivers off the CD would result in errors. Errors on the driver from the hp website ("could not unpack"). No matter what USB port I used, it wouldn't recognize it. I think I entered a state of exhausted delirium and just started screwing around, and when I came to, the damn drivers were working. Don't even remember what I did.

Things seem to be fairly solid now and I'm in the process of restoring my backed up files, but I still can't shake the feeling that something's wrong here in the software, and that I'll continue to run into problems with drivers as I go along. Time will tell.
September 18, 2008 1:08:35 AM

Great... So nothing seems to unzip, unpack, or install properly. On top of that, I've now been getting quick flashes of the blue screen of death and a reboot.

I ran memtest and it came up with a fat whack of red errors.

Just once, I'd like to do an upgrade or a major repair and have it go smoothly. Just one time would be swell.

Anyway, I've got 2 sticks, so I'm going to try each one separately.
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