View Full Version : Upgrade question

05-23-2004, 06:55 PM
Here's the deal. I'm on the cusp of ordering a barebones setup (case/PS, MB, processor, DVD/CD burner), and cannibilizing the rest of the parts from my current box. I'd like to just plop the HD with the OS (dual boot, actually: XP Pro and Fedora) and software already installed.

My question: will I run into any issues inherent in such an operation beyond, say, having to reactivate Windows? (I'm under the impression that a Windows installation will balk at a certain number of hardware changes and require reactivation; but I see that as trivial in this context.) I wouldn't mind doing a fresh install, except that it would be [at least] an all-day affair with all the software I use; and my current installation is running pretty smoothly these days.

Thanks in advance,

Ice Czar
05-23-2004, 07:00 PM
yes there will be quite a few issues
the OS will choke on the new chipset
you would need to run Sysprep (http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro/using/itpro/deploying/introduction.asp) to accomplish this

it will uninstall all the specific hardware drivers and allow the migration, you would need to do it for both installs

your not migrating from a single to a dual processor are you?
that would entail different HALs (Hardware Abstraction Layers)
in which case do the fresh install

whatever you do, BACKUP first
Good Luck

05-23-2004, 07:29 PM
even if it is possible like ice czar described.....I wouldn't recommend it.

05-23-2004, 08:16 PM
Thanks for the replies.

Originally posted by iC4-
even if it is possible like ice czar described.....I wouldn't recommend it.

Hmm... I had a feeling someone would say that, and my gut tells me to agree. Fresh install then? Comments Czar?


Ice Czar
05-23-2004, 08:24 PM
Sysprep, properly employed works like a charm
however the properly employed part is the catch :p
the learning curve while not all that steep is there
balance that against the time needed to reinstall from scatch

consider that this is an Admin tool that enables you to cast the OS to hundreds of computers, it works quite well

How to Prepare Images for Disk Duplication with Sysprep (http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro/using/itpro/deploying/duplication.asp)

you wont be duplicating but the prep is what counts

Sysprep is a tool designed for corporate system administrators, OEMs, and others who need to deploy the Windows® XP operating system on multiple computers. After performing the initial setup steps on a single system, you can run Sysprep to prepare the sample computer for cloning.

To use Sysprep as part of the disk duplication process, the following requirements must be met:

The master installation and the destination computers must have compatible hardware abstraction layers (HALs). For example, HAL APIC and HAL MPs (multiprocessor systems) are compatible, whereas HAL PIC (Programmable Interrupt Controller) is not compatible with either HAL APIC or HAL MPs.

The mass–storage controllers (IDE or SCSI) must be identical between the reference and destination computers.

Plug and Play devices such as modems, sound cards, network cards, video cards, and so on, do not have to be the same.

However, any device drivers not included in Drivers.cab should be included in the master installation before you run Sysprep.

Alternatively, make sure the uninstalled drivers are available on the destination computer at first run, so Plug and Play can detect and install the drivers.

Third–party software or disk–duplicating hardware devices are required. These products create binary images of a computer’s hard disk, and they either duplicate the image to another hard disk or store the image in a file on a separate disk.

The size of the destination computer’s hard disk must be at least the same size as the hard disk of the master installation. If the destination computer has a larger hard disk, the difference is not included in the primary partition. However, you can use the ExtendOemPartition entry in the Sysprep.inf file to extend the primary partition if it was formatted to use the NTFS file system.

Note If the reference and destination computers have different BIOS versions, you should test the process first to ensure success. When using Sysprep for Disk Duplication, Sysprep modifies the local computer Security ID (SID) so that it is unique to each computer

How to prepare a master installation for cloning

1 Install Windows XP on a master computer. As a best practice, Microsoft recommends that Windows XP be installed from a distribution folder by using an answer file to help ensure consistency in configuring the master installation, so that iterative builds can be created and tested more readily. See Unattend.txt for information about automating Windows Setup using an answer file.

2 Log on to the computer as an administrator.

3 (Optional) Install and customize applications, such as Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer favorite items, and so on.

4 (Optional) Install any device drivers not included in Drivers.cab and not installed by the answer file.

5 (Optional) Run audit tests.

6 (Optional) If you want, create a Sysprep.inf file manually or with the aid of Setup Manager. This file is used to further customize each computer for the user and helps to set the amount of information for which the user will be prompted during Mini–Setup.

7 Run Sysprep.exe. Make sure that both the Sysprep.exe and Setupcl.exe files exist together in the %systemdrive%\Sysprep folder on the local hard disk. When used, the Sysprep.inf also needs to be in the same folder or on a floppy disk that is inserted when the Windows boot menu appears.
Important If Setupcl.exe is not in the same directory as Sysprep.exe, Sysprep will not work.

8 If the computer is ACPI–compliant, the computer will shut down by itself. If not, a dialog box appears stating that it is safe to shut down the computer.

9 Take out the system drive and move it to the new computer

More >

seems I made a slight error, you can go from a APIC single processor HAL to a APIC Dual Processor HAL
(Advanced Programmable Interrupt Controller)
which all modern computers are currently employing

what I would do is clone your HDD as it is right now
then run the sysprep on the original and try it
if it doesnt work
you have the clone, you could try again to resolve whatever hung up the first time or simply do a fresh install and then add the clone to migrate any data over since your not booting into it
there are distinct advantages to having multiple HDDs (http://www.cgtalk.com/showthread.php?s=&postid=1337415#post1337415) (my last post currently)

on my [H]ome|Forum members employ sysprep without issue all the time, but without a list of the components from and to, there could be issues, this could save you alot of time, but definately BACKUP first

note APIC and ACPI are two seperate and confusing acronyms :p

05-23-2004, 08:58 PM
Even though sysprep is an awesome tool....Its still best used when moving from one fresh system, to another.

Anytime your trying to port a multi-year old system to a new one, your better off wiping the entire drive, and installing from scratch.

Windows OS's are self destructive, and degrade rapidly over time (unless properly maintained).

The average consumer machine can have nothing more then a wipe and reinstall of programs and apps, and the consumer will think you just gave them a brand spanking new computer. The performance difference is that great.

I'd use this time to backup all my data, possibly ghost to an image file (as a backup of the backup) and start anew.

Ice Czar
05-24-2004, 03:25 AM
Originally posted by GregHess
(unless properly maintained).

now thats the truth :p
but based on his description I assumed it was in good shape
if you do elect to migrate with sysprep, a defrag, system cleaning and registry scrub would be a good idea before hand, also remove as many components via the hardware uninstall as possible beforehand

on the other hand a fresh install and optimization is nice
(and a ghost of it directly afterwards is also a good idea)
personally Id be more concerned about trying to do the sysprep with a dualboot, not exactly sure how that would run
and assume its just the normal proceedure run twice

05-24-2004, 08:20 PM

Well, it sounds like a day devoted to upgrading either way.

Yeah, I'd done a fresh install pretty recently (sometime after the beginning of the year), and it's been working pretty well. I think I'm pretty good about maintaining my system. However, it sounds like the Sysprep route might be more trouble than it's worth (given that I'd be doing it for the first time); plus I'm not too attached to my Fedora installation, so I'll probably just start from scratch.

Thanks for the input, everyone. Much appreciated.


Ice Czar
05-24-2004, 11:21 PM
Originally posted by guypapyrus
Fedora installation

sysprep would do nothing there :p

a fresh install of at least that partition\install would be required

if your running a Win\Linux dualboot setup
do you have Mondo Rescue (http://www.microwerks.net/~hugo/)?

a very handy freeware ap that will work on Windows
but only if there is Linux installed as well ;)

(If your running a RAID array its worth adding a Linux install just for that)

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