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Is it easy to upgrade a computer with new mother board and processor

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Is it easy to upgrade a computer with new mother board and processor

Old 12-27-01, 07:20 AM
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Is it easy to upgrade a computer with new mother board and processor

My computer is really old and slow (Dell PII 233 MMX with 32 MB RAM) therefore I'm planning to buy an upgrade kit consisting of a new motherboard, a new processor AMD Duron 900MHz, 128 MB of RAM and a fan.

I was wondering if this is a good idea and how easily this can be done? Do you just have to take out the old mother board, put in the new one, put the new processor and the other new parts plus the old parts (sound card etc) on it, connect to the old hard drive and then it is done? Or is it more complicated than that?

I'm running W2k professional. Thanks in advance.
Old 12-27-01, 08:01 AM
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You're going to want to reinstall Windows if you replace such a major component as a motherboard if you want it to run stable. Also - you have to make sure your power supply will handle that chipset - most likely not. Also - if your case is ATX Formfactor, then you should be ok, but it might not be. Dell has been pretty good about ATX, so you're probably fine there. Also - you're looking at a bottleneck situation - you upgrade "this" and "that" becomes a bottleneck. For example, you upgrade your motherboard and processor and your graphics card is slowing down your system or your ram is too slow or not the right type. Anyway - best thing would be to stay away from anything that says "kit" on it. You'll save money by purchasing components separately. Sounds backwards, but it's true... if your 'kit' is cheaper than similar components seperately from a place like www.newegg.com, then you're getting what you pay for. That means it'll be cheap substandard components in your kit. Apart from all that, yes - it's fairly easy - you don't need a physics degree to do it. If you've ever put together a model car, you'll be fine.
Old 12-27-01, 08:04 AM
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You need to find out what type of case you have, most likely its either AT or ATX. With a 233 I would assume you have a AT case and most of the new motherboards are made ATX. I have even bought some motherboards that were ATX and did not fit my ATX case. As for the ease of installation, its not too hard if you know what your doing. If your a newbie it can be a frustrating experience, and you could blow some of your components.

My advice would be to take it to a local computer shop and have them fit the motherboard in the case. I have had problems with this before and its worth the extra money to have somebody else fit the motherboard.
Old 12-28-01, 12:01 AM
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You probably should go ahead and buy what is called a "bare bones" system (look in the ads in the back half of an issue of Computer Shopper to find examples). These can include the parts you mentioned plus a case and power supply and possibly a few other components, depending on how much you want to spend. It shouldn't really cost too much more than what you already are planning on.
Old 12-28-01, 04:49 AM
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Thanks guys, I pretty soon realised that I would have to order a new box and perhaps a new hard drive and a graphics card to. It will cost me a little more but I guess it is worth it.
Old 12-28-01, 11:00 AM
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I have had no problem replacing a cpu and motherboard from an existing computer. I didn't have to reinstall windows, either.

What I did do was delete everything in the system/device manager that was motherboard dependant, and windows reinstalled the right drivers for all the devices.

It is tricky sometimes mounting the motherboard in an existing system, and setting up the bios, but believe me... you can do it.

--Krisbee
Old 12-28-01, 11:35 AM
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Originally posted by krisbee
I have had no problem replacing a cpu and motherboard from an existing computer. I didn't have to reinstall windows, either.

What I did do was delete everything in the system/device manager that was motherboard dependant, and windows reinstalled the right drivers for all the devices.

It is tricky sometimes mounting the motherboard in an existing system, and setting up the bios, but believe me... you can do it.

--Krisbee
if your going to go this route.. the best thing to do..
if your running win9x
before you shut down your computer for the last time with the old motherboard and setup.. go to your device manager.. and under system, delete "Plug and Play Bios".. this will delete everything in your device manager.. then shut down the system.. swap boards and processors.. when you boot it back up, it will find all your devices again, and setup the new ones..
of course the best way is a format.. but if you are really trying to get around that, then this method will usually work fine.
Old 12-28-01, 10:07 PM
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Most Dells that I've seen use a proprietary case, although some P-Pros were using ATX. Therefore, you're probably out of luck on upgrading it (a major reason why I don't like brand name machines).

You're going to want to reinstall Windows if you replace such a major component as a motherboard if you want it to run stable.
You shouldn't have to - Windows, both 2000 and Millennium, are smart enough to figure out when the chipset is changed. In fact, I was able to get around the minimum CPU speed in Millennium by installing while the hard drive was attached to a VIA-based K6-2 system, and then putting the drive in my ALI Aladdin-based P133 - it worked a treat!

RD

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