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eMachines mobo question


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#1
fowlermj

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I hope this is in the right section, rather than under building a pc :whistling:

There was a power outage in my building last night, and this morning I came down to find my computer powered up but stuck pre-boot. I turned it off, got ready for work, and tried to start it up. It powers on, but never reaches the boot phase. There are no beeps and the activity indicator light is on but not blinking.

This has me more than a little concerned... I have a surge protector between all my computer components and the power outlet (not just a power strip), but I have had problems with power surges in the past. I have also replaced my power supply twice over the three years I have owned this computer.

I have it in for diagnostics with a local tech, and I'm dreading hearing that it's the motherboard. I subbed in an older power supply earlier to see if that was the issue, but it did exactly the same thing. So looks like it won't be a $50 fix this time.

At any rate, the question is if it is even possbile to succesfully replace a motherboard like this. I have heard many rumors (or facts) about replacing such motherboards, primarily that there is a real problem with the license that comes with the preinstalled Winxp. Basically that Winxp will recognize the new mobo as a new computer, and will not allow Winxp to work with it (since it is only licensed for use on one computer).

I would imagine that the recomendation will be to toss this old gal in the dumpster and start with a new computer, but it has served me well as a slightly beefed-up gaming computer.

Here is basically what I have:

eMachines T2460
Athalon XP 2400+
1.25gb DDR
60gb HD
GeForce FX 5600 Ultra

Is there any way to salvage this computer if it is the motherboard? Or would I be better served to grab the HD and vid card and slap them in a new computer all together?

You've been very helpful in the past, and I look forward to your comments!

-M
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#2
dsenette

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At any rate, the question is if it is even possbile to succesfully replace a motherboard like this. I have heard many rumors (or facts) about replacing such motherboards, primarily that there is a real problem with the license that comes with the preinstalled Winxp. Basically that Winxp will recognize the new mobo as a new computer, and will not allow Winxp to work with it (since it is only licensed for use on one computer).


well....the biggest issue is that if you have xp on the machine (which you said you do) isn't so much the licensing or activation...it's the fact that xp ties itself very tightly to the hardware profile (read motherboard)...and will only boot (once installed) to that hardwear profile..if the board is replaced with THE EXACT SAME make and model motherboard...you SHOULD have no problems whatsoever...if the board get's replaced with a different make and model...your first option is to do a repair installation of xp IMMEDIATELY on the first boot...don't try to boot all the way into windows first...you have to boot directly to the xp cd and do a repair install the first time you power it up with the new board...and sometimes even that doesn't work...and you ahve to do a complete format and reinstall...

the biggest question here is how emachines prepared you for disaster recovery....(which from my experience they usually take the "good luck with that" approach..) if they gave you a recovery cd...chances are you won't be able to do the repair install with it....and chances are y ou won't be able to do the emachines destructive recovery (format reinstall) with the disk either...do to the hardware change....if they supplied you with a recovery partition on the harddrive....well then the repair is out...and you would probably have the same issues with the destructive recovery as with the disk.....if you want to be safe...and you have the cash handy...you could pick up a full version copy of xp at your local computer store..that way you'll always have that to fall back on
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#3
fowlermj

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Hm. Thanks for the quick reply!

I think I probably confused the issue when I brought up licensing. What you're describing is what I was hearing about, but somehow I thought it had something to do with a license.

At any rate, I do not have an xp cd, just a recovery disk. And I'm not nearly comfortable enough with computers to risk getting an exact mobo that might work. If there's much technical tweaking required I would be totally lost.

It looks like the replacement mobo at emachines is $159.00. I would probably end up screwing up the install and having to have a tech at a local place screw with it for a week and a half and end up being charged another hundred or two.

I suppose it's time to hang this one up and get a new computer.

Along that same line of thinking, is it terribly difficult to snag the old hd out of my comp and install it in my new computer (in addition to the existing hd)? Or is there a way to transfer that data from the old to the new?

Thanks again for the help!
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#4
dsenette

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Along that same line of thinking, is it terribly difficult to snag the old hd out of my comp and install it in my new computer (in addition to the existing hd)? Or is there a way to transfer that data from the old to the new?

one of the easiest things to do...you would pull the old hd out...jumper it as a slave...and plug it in...then you'd have to do a little of file manipulation (which we can help you with once you get it up and ready) to get the files back...
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#5
fowlermj

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That sounds like a pretty good plan. Setting up the hd as a slave doesn't look to be too difficult, so once I get a new pc (a whole other adventure) I'm sure I'll be back with some questions!

Thanks again for the quick replies and all your help!
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#6
fowlermj

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The diagnosis was that the mobo was indeed the problem. So I bought a gateway AMD 64 X2 3800+, 2gb ram with a 250gb hd.

And after looking around on the internet I found that setting up a slave hd was really pretty easy. Worked first try. Which is, oddly, the first time something has worked first try for me in a computer :whistling:

The only real problem I've had is trying to transfer subscription software, like Trend Micro's PC-cillin or Webroot's SpySweeper and Window Washer. All the gaming files are pretty much drag and drop, with some reinstall and re-entering my pw's, but those three programs just do not want to work. Even though my subs run through December they are all basically saying that there is a verification error when the start up (which I imagine means they think I'm using it on multiple computers).

Will I have to re-sub (and redownload and install) these to get them on my new computer? I'm the same end user but I wonder if they see it that way :blink:
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#7
dsenette

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you'll probably need to reinstall the programs...but contact the tech support for each program and ask how to keep your current subscription
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