Replacing motherboard but not reformatting?

I have a problem, I'm in the process of upgrading almost all of my system excluding the processor/ram/hard drive. I am replacing the motherboard power supply and video card though. The hard drive I have right now has very important files on it that I can't replace but I don't have any way of backing it up because it is a rather small hard drive and pretty much full. I've read around that I can delete my current chipset drivers or perform a "repair install" instead of reformatting my whole hard drive. Is this possible? I'm running Windows 7 Ultimate 32bit.
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More about replacing motherboard reformatting
  1. Repair install should work but there is always a slim change of data corruption.
  2. OK just one more question, would I need to insert the disk I installed from when I first boot up after I install the new components or will windows automatically detect that I need to repair install?
  3. You will have to boot up from the disk.
  4. Best answer
    With windows 7, you stand a very good chance of being able to just boot from your hard drive.
    You can then update your chiset drivers using the cd that came with the motherboard.
    If the new motherboard has the same chipset as the old, even that may not be necessary.

    I would try that first.

    A repair install might be necessary.

    I had a similar situation with failed a i7-920 X58 motherboard.
    I replaced the motherboard with a H61 motherboard and a i3-2100.
    I expected to have to do a clean install or perhaps a repair install.
    I had nothing to lose, so I tried to boot with the old windows7 HDD
    It booted from the old hard drive and ran without issue. I needed to use the h61 cd to get the lan chipset going.
  5. I'm updating to a G31 from a D945G so not that major. I'll try just booting from the HD but if that doesn't work I'll do the repair install. Thanks for all the help :)
  6. Best answer selected by R_00N.
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