Best practice to move existing system drive to new motherboard/CPU?


  1. Posts : 2,487
    Windows 10 Home, 64-bit
       #1

    Best practice to move existing system drive to new motherboard/CPU?


    Unfortunately………I am starting to feel the upgrade itch. It’s been over 4 years and a new series of Intel desktop CPUs has launched.

    All I might change are CPU and motherboard---not RAM.

    I’m seriously considering NOT doing my normal clean install, partially out of curiosity about the process, but mostly because I’d hate to spend the hours required to reconfigure Windows and dozens of applications.

    Current setup is Win 10 Home Retail updated to version 2004 system drive (2.5 inch SATA SSD), with all data on totally separate drives. Strictly UEFI, GPT, no MBR. No graphics card. Starting with an Intel 6600K and ending with something like a 10600 or 10700, probably non-K. From an AsRock Z170 series board to most likely Gigabyte, possibly Asus, either H470 or Z490.

    I will of course make a fresh Macrium image of all partitions on the system drive before beginning.

    With my limited understanding, I guess I could do any of these 4 things:

    1: simply move the drive to the new hardware with no preparation and see if it will boot.

    2: use Sysprep to “generalize” the drive, shut down, and then move it.

    3: walk through my programs list in settings/apps and Device Manager and uninstall anything that looks to be driver-ish or motherboard-specific.

    4: something else. Provide details.

    What is the best practice as of today? There may be a tutorial, but I couldn’t find it in my fumbling.

    I’m generally interested in the least frustration and I realize I may have to reactivate.

    As I understand it, I should assure that my current install is linked to my MS account. I think it is already, although I have a “local” installation.

    Not sure this is in the right forum, so move if required.
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 4,457
    Win 11 Pro 22000.708
       #2

    I know nothing about "best practices".

    If you have imaged the drive, I suggest Option 1. I have had it succeed going from an Intel motherboard to an AMD one, so I'm optimistic about Win10's ability to detect new hardware and update the drivers.

    I suggest checking Device Manager after, in case Windows lacks some drivers for specific hardware.
      My Computers


  3. Posts : 7,115
    Windows 10 Pro 64 bit
       #3

    If you have the paid for version of Reflect, then you can restore your image to the system drive on the new PC using the Redeploy to New Hardware feature. Some people have reported getting a 50% discount code for Reflect during the past few days. It might be worth contacting Macrium to twist their arm for a code if interested.

    Option 1 may very well work and there s nothing to lose by trying it. Note you will probably have to reactivate Windows due to the hardware change and Office if you have it might not activate if you have a licence tied to a single PC.
      My Computers


  4. Posts : 1,178
    Windows 10 Pro
       #4

    bobkn said:
    I know nothing about "best practices".
    If you have imaged the drive, I suggest Option 1. I have had it succeed going from an Intel motherboard to an AMD one, so I'm optimistic about Win10's ability to detect new hardware and update the drivers.
    About two months ago I replaced my motherboard/CPU/RAM. I went from an ASUS P9X79Pro motherboard, Intel 3930k CPU, and 16 GB of DD3 RAM to an ASUS ROG Strix-E motherboard, AMD 3900X CPU and 32 GB of DDR 4 RAM. Once I powered up the new system, I did a BIOS update, only then I installed drivers that I downloaded from the ASUS website, and then rebooted. Smooth sailing.

    Point is the system booted up even without all the new AMD drivers installed. This is on Win 10 Pro 64.
      My Computers


  5. TV2
    Posts : 2,015
    W10 Pro 20H2
       #5

    I have read a few threads in these forums where folks just moved the OS drive to the new rig and Windows started and it worked.
    It seems that Windows recognizes new hardware, installs it's generic MS drivers to get this moving, and then you can update the drivers to newer/better ones afterward.
    Some people had to deal with re-activation, some did not.

    I have no personal experience with this. Could PM these OPs to see how it went:

    Upgrading my hardware wanting to move hard drives

    Moving win10 hard drive

    Moving Hard Drive from dead computer to new computer without restallin

    Moving to New Machine
      My Computers


  6. Posts : 17,344
    Windows 11 Pro
       #6

    There are two main hang-ups that prevent just moving the drive over and booting into it:

    1. UEFI v. legacy BIOS. As long as both computers are booting in UEFI, no problem.
    2. SATA controller mode and possibly driver. IE: AHCI v. RAID v. IDE mode. The easy way to avoid this is just before moving the drive over, delete any drivers/devices in device manager under IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers then shut down the computer by holding down the shift key when you click on the shut down icon on the power start menu.
      My Computer


  7. Posts : 5,827
    Win 11 Pro (x64) 21H2
       #7

    TV2 said:
    I have read a few threads in these forums where folks just moved the OS drive to the new rig and Windows started and it worked.
    I've done that a few times without issue, and especially after cloning a drive. EZPZ.

    I've also moved the OS drive from an old build to a new one without issue and Windows being activated; however it's always advisable to do a clean install for a new build, but for the lazy (me) it does work. Been there, done that... a few times

    Good luck.
      My Computers


 

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