Windows won't boot after Motherboard/CPU/RAM change

Shmiggles

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Feb 7, 2013
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This is a follow up to my last question

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/383952-31-video-signal

Basically I had to stop in trying to fix that problem because I found that Windows wouldn't boot. It said I needed to insert the disk and repair the install, however I didn't have it anymore. I had to hunt another up and buy it.

Now I have booted from the disk and tried to repair the install twice. The first time it just didn't work, the second time it said this is a problem that cannot be fixed by the automatic repair.

I am running Windows Vista Ultimate 64bit OEM.

What I am wondering is, is there any way to get the system to boot again without losing all my files? Do I have to add a new hard drive and install Windows to that? What about upgrading to Windows 7 Ultimate? Can I reinstall Windows Vista Ultimate without losing all my programs? Will reinstalling Windows even work?
 

Shmiggles

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Feb 7, 2013
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Would I be able to install it without losing my stuff then? Can I do an upgrade install without actually being able to boot windows?
 

Shmiggles

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Feb 7, 2013
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I see. Would I be able to request a new product key from windows even though I used the OEM version? Or is my only choice to buy the new Windows?

As for a new partition, how would I go about making one? Don't know how to without being able to boot, but I certainly have the space.
 

tiny voices

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Microsoft might give you a new key. They will deactivate the old key though, if they give you a new one. You create the partition on the drive when you install windows. Just partition off the old files. (is they are 89gb then give them a 90gb partition). Install windows on the new empty partition.
 

Shmiggles

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Feb 7, 2013
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I only see the option to install to the drive or format the drive when installing windows. How exactly do you create a new partition? Don't want to accidentally destroy my old files.
 

smeezekitty

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I don't think it is a product key issue. I swapped out the motherboard and windows booted fine although I initially had some driver problems.

Later it prompted for activation but I tried online and it worked.

Sounds like a major driver issue. Probably need to reinstall fresh.
 

Aramis de Vannes

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Jun 2, 2013
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That is NOT true. There is a way to fix the issue without having to reinstall Windows. Check this link: http://www.dowdandassociates.com/content/howto-repair-windows-7-install-after-replacing-motherboard/
 

Ron Jarosch

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Jun 3, 2015
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I had the same problem which brought me to this thread. The PC in question for me is an HTPC with no important data so I opted for a fresh install. After installation including entering the validation code included with the discs, I loaded various drivers and software and to my surprise, all of my data was still on the drive! My version of Windows is the Win 7 Family Pack Upgrade.

It's probably harder for OEM PC owners because the restore discs are images rather than install discs.
 

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