Jump to content

Welcome to Geeks to Go - Register now for FREE

Geeks To Go is a helpful hub, where thousands of volunteer geeks quickly serve friendly answers and support. Check out the forums and get free advice from the experts. Register now to gain access to all of our features, it's FREE and only takes one minute. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more.

Create Account How it Works

Computer Keeps Resetting Itself

  • Please log in to reply



    New Member

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 1 posts
I just replaced my motherboard and CPU. When I power up it goes through the POST no problems but when the computer tries to boot from the hard drive it just restarts itself. I know the hard drive is good because I re-installed my old motherboard and CPU and all is working fine. I called the shop where I bought the motherboard and they said I would have to re-format my hard drive! I have a hard time believing that. I have replaced the motherboard and CPU 2 other times before and never had to re-format the hard drive. The only difference now is that I am running Windows XP. The last times I upgraded I was running Windows 98 and had no difficulty. It really doesn't make sense to me that I would have to reformat my hard drive because I upgraded my motherboard.

:tazz: Any Ideas?
  • 0


Retired Tech

Retired Tech

    Retired Staff

  • Retired Staff
  • 20,563 posts
Check with Microsoft that you are not being stopped by the XP activation process, which will have noticed the hardware changes

Can hardware components be changed and upgraded?

Product Activation is able to tolerate a certain degree of change in a hardware configuration by allowing a current hash value to have a degree of difference from the hash value that was originally activated. As a result, users can change their hardware without the product believing it is on a different PC than the one it was activated on. If the user completely overhauls the hardware making substantial hardware changes (even over long periods of time), reactivation may be required. In that case, users may need to contact to contact a Microsoft customer service representative by telephone to reactivate.

How does product activation determine tolerance? In other words, how many components of the PC must change before I am required to reactivate?

Common changes to hardware such as upgrading a video card, adding a second hard disk drive, adding RAM or upgrading a CD-ROM device will not require the system to be reactivated.

Specifically, product activation determines tolerance through a voting mechanism. There are 10 hardware characteristics used in creating the hardware hash. Each characteristic is worth one vote, except the network card which is worth three votes. When thinking of tolerance, it's easiest to think about what has not changed instead of what has changed. When the current hardware hash is compared to the original hardware hash, there must be 7 or more matching points for the two hardware hashes to be considered in tolerance. If the network card is the same, then only 4 additional characteristics must match (because the network card is worth 3, for a total of 7). If the network card is not the same, then a total of 7 characteristics other than the network card must be the same. If the device is a laptop (specifically a dockable device), additional tolerance is allotted and there need be only 4 or more matching points. Therefore, if the device is dockable and the network card is the same, only one other characteristic must be the same for a total vote of 4. If the device is dockable and the network card is not the same, then a total of 4 characteristics other than the network card must be the same.

Are the changes cumulative? In other words, if I change one component today and one tomorrow, is that two component changes?

The changes are cumulative; however, if a user is asked to reactivate, the hardware profile is reset to that new configuration.

What are the 10 hardware characteristics used to determine the hardware hash?

The 10 hardware characteristics used to determine the hardware hash are: Display Adapter, SCSI Adapter, IDE Adapter, Network Adapter MAC Address, RAM Amount Range (i.e. 0-64mb, 64-128mb, etc), Processor Type, Processor Serial Number, Hard Drive Device, Hard Drive Volume Serial Number, CD-ROM/CD-RW/DVD-ROM.

Does product activation deter hard disk cloning by comparing these hard disk hashes?

One of the forms of piracy that Product Activation guards against is hard disk cloning. Not all forms of hard disk cloning are illegal. However, by comparing the hardware hash originally activated to the current hardware hash, hard disk cloning can be deterred by requiring re-activation if the hardware hashes are substantially different.
  • 0



    Trusted Tech

  • Retired Staff
  • 5,236 posts
XP continues to reboot itself because if the motherboard isn't EXACTLY the same as the one that you replaced, then XP doesn't recognize it nor does it have the drivers installed for it. What you will need to do is a Repair Installation of Windows. Don't worry, after doing this all your programs will still work and you won't lose any files/settings. It only replaces the operating system files. You will need to redo all Windows Updates after doing it, including SP2 if it isn't integrated into your XP installation CD. You can use the link in my signature as a guide to doing this.


Edited by Fenor, 22 January 2006 - 07:57 AM.

  • 0

Similar Topics

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

As Featured On:

Microsoft Yahoo BBC MSN PC Magazine Washington Post HP