Do i need to re-install OS if i change Mobo?

Hey everyone,

The title mostly explain my question. I have an XPS 630i w/e8400 clocked at 3.6 (9*400). I'm stock at FSB 400 because the 650i chipset won't let me any further.

Now that i have the OC disease i would like to hit 4.0 on air, so i plan on changing Mobo (yes this Dell is ATX and Mobo swap can be done). I'm leaning toward EVGA 780i so i can hit something like FSB 450 and still use SLI.

I also know that this is actually spending money for 400ish MHZ and i wont see any meaningful difference in my Apps and Games, but whatever...i'm addicted.

So the main question is, do i need to re-install the OS when i do a mainboard switch?

Thank you all in advance for your usual answers/discussions.
13 answers Last reply
More about install change mobo
  1. not always, but it is recommended.
  2. I would do a fresh install of the OS. If you are serious about OC'ing then you don't need any driver problems from trying to use the OS that was installed using a different MB.
  3. Thanks for your input.
  4. I just did that going from a E8400 and a P35 mobo to a i7-920 and P6T.
    I had vista home premium-64.
    I could not find my vista dvd, for a clean install that I had planned on.
    I put in a backup hard drive, and it booted nicely. Asked me to put in the driver disk that came with the mobo, and everything worked perfectly. I was invited to activate, and it did so automatically so no phone call was necessary.
  5. it is recommended to do a fresh install, because that way you actually install the drivers needed for the new mobo to work properly.
  6. interesting ! !i never knew that was possible or even imagined it..much to learn
  7. You generally don't need to do a clean install. I've done it several times with no problem. Just uninstall the chipset drivers before taking out the hard drive. Then install the new chipset dirvers with the new mobo. This is not even necessary, but it won't hurt, if the chipset manufacturer is the same. I've gone VIA => VIA mobo and NV => NV mobo with different chipsets without even uninstalling the drivers first, but afterward. If its a different chipset manufacturer then you will almost definitely need to uninstall the chipset drivers first or it probably won't load windows.
  8. I'd recommend it. My last mobo change windows wouldn't even boot on the new mobo.
  9. It depends largely on the differences in the boards. The farther apart the boards are, the more problems you are likely to encounter.
    You can change any board to any board though without a reinstall.
    I find the best way is to simply have Windows run a repair install.
    Not the the first one that it prompts you to make when insert the Windows disk though. Proceed to do a new install, let it find that you already have Windows installed and prompt you again if you want to repair the current installation, or do a new install. It will also warn you at this point a new install will erase all data on your drive. Let it do the repair install at this point. It works pretty well.
    However nothing is a good as a clean install. Even though the repair does a good job, you will in time likely notice little anoyances, some things just don't seem to work right.
    Then you will be posting here asking for help with things that don't work for some "unknown reason"'s a fact.

    Save your info, do a fresh install when you change a board is excellant advise.
  10. Even if the OS isn't bootable after a motherboard swap, you can often get away with just doing a repair install rather than a complete format and reinstall.
  11. I always do a fresh install myself. One, I like to reinstall about once a year anyway to keep the OS running smoothly. Two, since to me a mother board is a new system, I rather start over from scratch.
  12. My OS was Vista RC1/2 (I forget) and I would have been cut off any day anyway.

    Misocainea is probably right, but I would listen to Jitpublisher. Make sure you back everything up and do a clean install. It can't do any harm.
  13. I'd go for fresh install as you will be less prone to headaches, though I've moved a hdd from a p4 mobo to a 939 mobo (intel to amd) with no probs - just uninstall ALL chipset/cpu drivers first.
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