Upgrading system after motherboard failure

Hey everyone, my computer is approaching its 4 year old mark and hardware problems were starting to pile up, ending in complete failure of the motherboard CMOS (replaced battery, still broken).

Fixing a computer this old probably isn't worth it, so I decided to update the mobo/cpu/RAM to something more modern (but still cheap). I'm not concerned with getting a new DVDRW player, hard drive, graphics card, or getting fancy stuff like a 6 fan case or a 6 pound cpu fan.

Since I don't play many games with demanding graphics or demand high graphics from them (I was happy playing crysis on low settings, go me) I decided to go with welfare gaming parts since my only concern right now is getting a new computer that _works_. For reference, the only recent game I'm even considering is MW2.

motherboard - Abit an8 32x
Processor - AMD athlon 3600+ (?) 2.1ghz. Dual core.
memory - 2x 1gb DDR

ASUS M4A78T-E AM3 AMD 790GX - $115

3 gig DDR3 RAM -$81

AMD athlon II X3 440 - $75

I feel like I'm spending a lot on a motherboard and memory compared to just $75 for a processor, but I couldn't find any good deals on 3x1gb of DDR3 (using 32 bit win XP, can only use 3.2gb max) compared to how much 2x2 gb cost, and I really have no idea how to pick a motherboard that's cheap but also reliable and can be expanded on in the future when I'm ready to spend more money on a better rig.

The processor is really cheapie just because I really have no need for a faster processor when my gpu is a single 9800gt that would probably be the bottleneck with this cheap processor anyway. Any advice on these 3 items would be appreciated greatly.

Lastly, since my motherboard actually died and I can't get on to adjust any hardware settings that would ease the transition, I don't know how to install XP onto the new motherboard with the old HDs that I have (1 160gb, boot drive, 1 partitioned 500+500gb internal drive, both SATA) without erasing data or causing all kinds of problems. I read on this website that I can just do a repair installation of windows, would that work? I have a 2 week old disk [image snapshot backup thingy using Acronis]- that thing where you basically make a snapshot of a drive and save it to a file in another location- on one of the partitions of my TB drive, so would I need to just reformat the primary drive and reload everything from the TB drive?

Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks =)
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  1. I would go with this motherboard instead for additional savings and for the fact you are running a Nvidia 9800GT, which rules out the need for two PCIe slots (at this time). The CPU and RAM are acceptable choices!!

    ASUS M4A785TD-M EVO AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
  2. Alright thanks, any advice on getting xp installed on the motherboard after I buy all the hardware?
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