Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

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Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Tue Dec 28, 2010 11:45 pm

Here's the hardware:

Phenom II X2 550BE (cores 3 and 4 unlocked)
Gigabyte GA-MA78LM-S2 replaced with MSI MSI 890GXM-G65 (if we're friends on Facebook you might have seen me reference an 890FX board, that was a typo)
2x2GB Corsair XMS2 DDR2-6400, replaced with 4x2GB Mushkin DDR3 10666
Sapphire Radeon 5770 Vapor X

I got some cash for Christmas and I wanted 8GB of memory for some XL Sonar projects that would cause alot of paging. Not possible on my old board so I decided that while I was getting a new board and RAM I might as well get an AM3 setup. Neat.

That's the important stuff, anyway. It includes what I'm coming from and what I'm going to. I really don't want to reinstall Windows. I backed up my data with the Win7 backup software to my USB drive in case I need to, though. CPU benchmarks like SuperPi have actually slightly improved because I found my OC at 3.6GHz is more stable on this new MSI board than it was on the older Gigabyte. So I know the CPU isn't a problem. But 3D game performance is pitiful - like half of what I was getting. Starcraft II on Ultra was a smooth 60+ FPS (with Vsync) at 1920x1080 on High presets but now it's around 35fps and that's just the start of the match before you do much. 3DMark Vantage and 3DMark 06 are similarly castrated, though I only ran them to verify things were poor. I was hitting around 15k in 06 and now it's down around 9k. So something is wrong. Here's what I've done:

1.) clean uninstall drivers and then re-downloaded and reinstalled the whole Catalyst 10.12 package
2.) took out the video card, booted with the onboard graphics, shut down, and put the video card back in
3.) pouted alot
4.) prepped my system for a nuke from orbit, which makes me a sad monkey

Can you think of anything I could try to get better frames before I have to reinstall 140GB of Steam games, 4 DVDs worth of audio software, etc. etc. etc.? I don't really want to because it'll take all day but I'll do it if I have to.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:06 am

Put your steam files in a safe place (spare hard-drive?). Nuke from orbit. Download and install the Steam client. Copy all of the files from your backup directory to your new (mostly empty) steam directory. Voila!
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:15 am

Mobo swap in Win-anything is a crapshoot. I've attempted it a few times, but my expectations of success are pretty low so I am pleasantly surprised when it works, and only mildly disappointed when it doesn't.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:54 am

Mobo swap with Windows is just asking for bizarre quirks in the future. I've seen the same quirks (ACPI, HAL, AHCI, Power Saving / Sleep States, SMBIOS / DMI tables, IRQ routing, motherboard components -- most of these relate the machine's BIOS) with SysPrep which is why every company I've worked for has avoided that buggy piece of cr*p. Just copy off the Steam folder like someone said, nuke the machine and reinstall Windows clean. You'll probably end up doing it in the future to iron out the wrinkles a swap introduces, so you might as well invest the time now by doing it right the first time and getting it over with.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 1:11 am

derFunkenstein wrote:Can you think of anything I could try to get better frames before I have to reinstall 140GB of Steam games, 4 DVDs worth of audio software, etc. etc. etc.? I don't really want to because it'll take all day but I'll do it if I have to.


Have you logged the gpu clocks temps and fan speed from the card while playing to make sure its not under clocked/hung at low speed?
Have you checked the pci-e frequency?

I just made nearly the exact same swap with win 7 ultimate, and everything is fine. I did change from a 4870 card to a gtx460 at the same time though. And I changed to a true 4 core cpu and put the 555 in anther machine.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 7:15 am

cass - I didn't think about that. I tried just now but Furmark + HWMon says the GPU doesn't get above 72-73C after 15 minutes. Oddly enough Furmark's framerate is OK, in the 18-20FPS range like it was previously.

Got up early this morning so I could check this thread and then nuke it. Guess I'm going to nuke it now. Booooooo. :p Silly hardware. Thanks guys, guess it really is a crapshoot.

edit: JAE - didn't realize I could do that. I just used the Steam backup utility and it ran overnight. Your way would have been faster.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 9:43 am

Mobo swaps generally work fine if you do it correctly. Windows keeps a lot of information about your machine's hardware (AHCI tables, registry entries, etc.) If you uninstall everything from device manager, and manually remove all device drivers, a motherboard swap should work. This generally works best if you use AHCI mode, not legacy.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 4:10 pm

x:\windows\system32\sysprep\sysprep /generalize /oobe /restart or /shutdown

Vista and Vista R2 can handle mobo swaps with no difficulty, but you have to take some steps that most people aren't familiar with. The above command should acheive what you want.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd744330(WS.10).aspx

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/ee530017 <- Video for the reading impaired.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 5:41 pm

Well that's super useful for next time out. The reinstall seems to have fixed things, though I wonder if I could have just used that. Oh well. :-/
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 6:00 pm

Yeah, you could have. I'm sorry I didn't catch this thread in time.

Sysprep on XP/2003 didn't always work because of the way the OS was designed and in particular the fact that the HAL was not portable. You run into the problem BDWilcox mentioned. Deployment of XP with sysprep really needed the same mobo.

Starting with the 6.x Windows kernels (Vista/2008) things changed and the HAL is portable. Deployment is a major part of the Windows design and implementation now. The needed tools are all free and it avoids many of the issues Ghost can introduce.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Wed Dec 29, 2010 8:26 pm

Wow, handy Ryu, thanks! May be making a switchover later this winter after the latest crop of motherboards comes out. Tired of this AMD-based board locking up during critical work.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Thu Dec 30, 2010 10:42 am

Oh I'm certainly not complaining, sorry if it came out that way. It is definitely good to know. :)
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:59 pm

Sorry to resurrect this thread after a month and a half, but I have need of more information about the sysprep command in Windows 7.

The linked MS page on "sysprep /generalize" states that "all unique system information is removed from the Windows installation. The security ID (SID) resets, any system restore points are cleared, and event logs are deleted.", which doesn't sound like something I want. I want my installed programs to remain in the registry etc., and I'd really like to be able to at least keep some sort of restore, though that may not be so necessary if things end up working well.

My situation is this: I tried to install a new heatsink on my i7 930 in a Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R socket 1366 board, and during that process the small nub that holds the heatsink in the center of the bracket that's bolted to the mobo moved out of its hole, and when I tightened the heatsink too far, the CPU's contacts pushed a number of the socket's contacts out of place and into odd shapes. Rather than mess around with it I quickly ordered a new motherboard and put the old one on the "maybe I'll fix it someday" pile. The new motherboard is an EVGA X58 FTW3 132-GT-E768-KR, and I simply switched them (with a great deal more care on the HS attachment this time :oops:) and restarted, figuring if it didn't work out only then would I find out whether there was a way to fix it.

This mostly worked, fortunately, except that there are a couple of pieces of Gigabyte software that won't uninstall, and, the part that's more bothersome, in the last several days MS's Security Essentials "update" boofed my old install, and I've been trying to uninstall the old version and get the new one to install in various ways, so far unsuccessfully. So I figured this might be a good time to try the sysprep part, though I'm sure it won't fix the actual problem with msse. But at least it may make life somewhat less annoying during all the services being stopped and attempts to delete files which keep regenerating.

Which is a long-winded way of asking if the thing will do as I think it will, and leave most everything else alone. Thanks for any useful replies.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Thu Feb 17, 2011 3:50 pm

The linked MS page on "sysprep /generalize" states that "all unique system information is removed from the Windows installation. The security ID (SID) resets, any system restore points are cleared, and event logs are deleted.", which doesn't sound like something I want. I want my installed programs to remain in the registry etc., and I'd really like to be able to at least keep some sort of restore, though that may not be so necessary if things end up working well.


It should leave your software installed, but you might lose any settings etc. for those applications depending on how they are stored. Also, you want to make sure you have a good backup of all your personal files - anything in your Documents, Pictures, etc. folders.

Basically, you're telling Windows to throw out all machine-specific information and boot up as a new install.

This mostly worked, fortunately, except that there are a couple of pieces of Gigabyte software that won't uninstall, and, the part that's more bothersome, in the last several days MS's Security Essentials "update" boofed my old install, and I've been trying to uninstall the old version and get the new one to install in various ways, so far unsuccessfully. So I figured this might be a good time to try the sysprep part, though I'm sure it won't fix the actual problem with msse. But at least it may make life somewhat less annoying during all the services being stopped and attempts to delete files which keep regenerating.


Unless these problems are caused by hardware, it won't help - are you sure you don't have some filesystem issues and/or HD problems?
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:07 pm

That's what I expected, though as far as I know there's very little in my "Documents" folder... which I tend to lose track of since it's named oddly because of the way I made usernames on this install.

As far as the Gigabyte software, it's been screwed up since I installed it as far as I can tell. I tend to think its their software's fault, that maybe they changed something and left it screwed up without changing the parms for the uninstaller, because it never worked right in the first place, and none of it's really worth much. And as far as I've been able to tell, the hardware is fine; I've run chkdsk and it finds no problems.

As for the msse stuff, MS seems to have had lots of people with the same problem, so I think it's... them, this time.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:50 pm

The idea behind Sysprep is to prepare an image you've toiled upon to be deployed to different hardware. This means it works to leave applications alone otherwise it ceases to be a useful tool versus say Ghost.

User accounts will remain in place as will applications. There might be some corner case that gets broken by it, but Murphy's law is in effect for anything we do in life. :P

So if you woes are caused by the software applications then Sysprep isn't a good fix. Again the idea is deployment of an image, the expectation is that the image has been tested and validated, ie known good.
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Re: Mobo swap in Win7 = meh

Postposted on Thu Feb 17, 2011 5:09 pm

Yeah, that makes sense, but my idea is that I've already got enough minor problems, so why not clean up the things that may be screwed up that I'm not seeing, yet. At least it hopefully won't wipe out the software, because that would take me quite a while to restore, and piss me off considerably.

Thanks for the replies, folks. :)

(As for the software problems, I'm considering using some 3rd party uninstaller software I've read about existing out there around the web.)
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