Help: How to Upgrade Motherboard Properly and Windows


Nov 17, 2012
I have an old custom built Windows XP system that I want to upgrade the motherboard/cpu/mem to upgrade to Windows 8 via download. I am interested in swapping out my old mobo (Socket 939-based with an Athlon 64 cpu) for a new one ( AM3+ Motherboard,Phenom II CPU,DRR3). I am not sure how to make my old Windows XP detect my new mobo/hardware along with the new drivers since Windows XP is so old. I am afraid to get the infamous blue screen because XP may not recognize the new hardware. How are mobo swaps usually performed? How do you make the old OS recognize new hardware that the OS may not have the drivers for? My new ASUS mobo has a cd with Windows XP drivers, so would you recommend that I install these new drivers into Windows XP before I swap and reboot? I want to buy the Windows 8 upgrade, so I figured I need to have Windows XP running with the new hardware during the upgrade process. Any suggestions on how I better do this would be appreciated. Thanks.

San Francisco

CPU support: Socket 939-based Athlon 64 processor
Form factor: ATX
Chipset: VIA K8T800 Pro
North bridge: VIA K8T800 Pro
South bridge: VIA VT8237
Interconnect: Ultra V-Link (1.06GB/sec)
PCI slots: 5 32-bit/33MHz
AGP slots: 1 AGP 4X/8X (1.5V only)
Memory: 4 184-pin DIMM sockets
Maximum of 4GB of DDR266/333/400 SDRAM
Storage I/O: Floppy disk
2 channels ATA/133
2 channels Serial ATA 150 via VT8237 south bridge with RAID 0,1 support
6-channel audio via VT8237 integrated audio and ALC658 codec

Old Windows XP Desktop:
Abit AV8 Motherboard - ATX
Socket 939
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual
VIA K8T800 Pro Chipset
North Bridge: VIA K8T800 Pro
South Bridge: VIA VT8237
4 184-pin DIMM sockets(DDR 266/333/400 SDRAM)
6-channel audio via VT8237 integrated audio and ALC658 codec
Gigabit LAN
USB 2.0
HDD Western Digital WD1600JD 160 GB

New Motherboard:

ASUS M5A97 R2.0 AM3+ Motherboard - ATX
Socket AM3+
CPU:AMD Phenom II X4 945 Quad Core
AMD 970 Chipset
North Bridge: AMD 970
South Bridge: SB950
2133MHz DDR3 (O.C.)
SATA3 6.0 Gb/s,
8-CH Audio,
Gigabit LAN,
USB 3.0, CrossFireX Ready


Jul 28, 2012
Is it a download upgrade direct from MS Website or are you installing from the DVD? If its the DVD it would be a case of build the system, fire it up with the DVD in, boot change in BIOS then away you go.

If its the downloadable, install the CPU and MOBO first (can I assume you have the Driver CD for the MOBO?) you can get all the XP and XP 64 bit drivers from here >>>

Hope this helps

Don't be afraid . . . .


Nov 17, 2012
Hi Bluerotkey,
I have the driver CD for the new Mobo and I am upgrading to Windows 8 from a download from Microsoft. As your your suggestion, I install the CPU and Mobobut I am not clear what I should do next. Shouldn't I install the Mobo drivers before I install the new hardware so that I can boot to XP before I upgrade to Windows 8?



You cannot install the new drivers before the hardware is installed. You'll receive "Hardware Not Found" errors. Generally speaking, when swapping the motherboard of a computer, you will need to back up your data, format the hard drive and re-install the Windows Operating System from scratch.

-Wolf sends