I am about to upgrade my system and intend to replace the existing MSI board ( P4 CPU) with another MSI board ( Socket 939 ) with an Athlon 64 chip. What happens to the existing Win XP Pro ( SP2 ) OS ? I will backup my drives before I start the swop, but I should like to know what I should be aware of and if it is a straightforward procedure ? Any advice much appreciated.
It would be best to remove the old mobo drivers in add/remove programs then turn off the pc to replace the motherboard. You may well find it still blue screens you as you are changing both the mobo chipset and the make of processor. A repair instalation will sort this though if it happens. click here
If you do a clean reinstall you will have to reactivate XP. When XP runs, it calculates what is effectively a checksum from the major components of your system and stores it in a file on your hard drive. This is used in the first activation.
Each time you start up subsequently, XP compares the system checksum with that stored on the disk. If they are significantly different, XP will tell you to activate and will not run. A fresh installation will not have this file, so will require activation.
If your existing installation will start on the new motherboard, it will do the comparison with your existing checksum and, if the differences are not too great, will run.
If your motherboards both have built-in network chips then the change will require reactivation. Microsoft counts motherboard and processor as 1 unit change each, but the network chip counts as 3. You are not allowed 5 unit changes without reactivation. It is my understanding that reactivation is not a problem.
A mobo change will not require reactivation but if you're concerned, before reinstalling, you can save C:\Windows\System32\WPA.DBL and WPA.BAK (if it exists) then copy them to the newly installed version.