This guide is written for every user who wants to replace the motherboard without reinstalling Windows from scratch. By following the instructions below, you will be able to keep your current Windows installation, programs, and settings after replacing the motherboard. The instructions also apply if you want to transfer your current Windows installation to completely different hardware (for example, from a desktop computer to a laptop or vice versa).
Consider the following scenarios:
1. You want to upgrade the main components of your computer (motherboard, processor, RAM, etc.), but you want to keep your current Windows installation so as not to touch your program settings and files and reinstall them from scratch.
2. You want to change the SATA hard disk controller mode from IDE to AHCI or RAID (or vice versa) in BIOS to ensure successful performance or compatibility.
– If you encounter any of the above scenarios, you will understand that Windows fails to start and crashes with a BSOD (blue screen of death) error.0x0000007B STOP INACCESSABLE_BOOT_DEVICE”. This is because Windows cannot find the correct drivers for the SATA hard disk controllers. To avoid this problem and not reinstall Windows, you need to “tell” Windows using the Windows registry to use the standard SATA hard disk controller driver at startup. To do this, follow the steps below to make the appropriate changes in the Windows registry, after which Windows will boot into Windows as usual. After booting, they install the necessary hard disk controller drivers according to the BIOS hard disk SATA controller mode settings, such as IDE compatible mode (aka Legacy or ATA Compatible) or AHCI or RAID mode.
This guide contains detailed instructions on how to replace the motherboard or upgrade your computer without reinstalling Windows and software from scratch. The instructions apply to the following versions of Windows: Windows 10,* 8, 7, Vista and XP.
*Note: Windows 10 will – in most cases – easily recognize your new hardware without following the instructions below.
How to upgrade your motherboard or PC and keep your current Windows installation and installed software.
After replacing a motherboard or upgrading a computer (for example, from an old desktop to a new laptop), all you have to do is “tell” Windows to use the standard SATA hard disk controller driver to keep and use your current Windows installation, programs, and settings. Windows is booting. To perform this task, you need to modify the registry according to your situation (scenario).
Scenario 1: You haven’t replaced the motherboard yet (to upgrade your computer) and your computer will start (boot) into the Windows operating system as usual. In this case, you need to change the registry from the current running Windows environment before proceeding to upgrade the computer.
Scenario 2: Windows won’t start because:
- You have already replaced the motherboard, OR because
- You have changed the SATA mode settings from the BIOS.
In this case, you need to use an offline registry editor to change the registry settings.
Scenario 1: Change the registry before replacing (upgrading) the motherboard in your computer (Windows will start normally).
– Use these instructions only if you have not yet replaced your motherboard and Windows starts normally. If you have already replaced the motherboard and/or Windows cannot load, follow the instructions in scenario 2. –
1. Load Windows normally and then open Windows Registry editor. For this:
- Click on “Windows” + “RClick the ” button to download Running dialog box.
- write “regedit” and click Enter.
2. Inside the Windows registry (from the left panel), go to this key: *
*Note: If there is Windows 8, Windows 10 & server 2012, then go to “StorAHCI” button
(eg: “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Repair\ControlSet001\services\storahci”) because these operating systems have StorAHCI installed instead of MSAHCI.
3. In the right pane, double-click ‘start’ Change the DWORD value and its value data 0 (zero). press OK when finished.
4. Now make the same change to this key:
5. If you are using RAID (otherwise skip this step), you need to make the same change to this switch:
6. Shut down Registry editor.
That’s it! Now you are ready to continue updating your computer. When done, enter the BIOS settings and select the SATA mode (IDE-ATA, AHCI or RAID) depending on your needs or leave the default settings. Exit the BIOS settings and start Windows. Windows should start without any problems. and install the required hard disk controller drivers. After Windows has finished installing the drivers, proceed to install the remaining device drivers for your new motherboard.
Scenario 2: Windows won’t start: Modify the registry using an OFFLINE registry editor.
— Use these instructions only if Windows won’t boot because you replaced the motherboard or changed the SATA controller mode in the BIOS. —
In this scenario, you must use an offline registry editor to modify the Windows registry. For this task, I prefer to use the Windows recovery media found on the Windows 7 or Windows Vista installation DVD. To open the Registry Editor from the Windows installation DVD, follow these steps:
1. Insert the Windows installation DVD into your CD/DVD drive and boot your computer from the Windows installation DVD.
Note: To boot from a DVD, you must set the CD/DVD drive as the first boot device in the BIOS settings. For this:
- Enabled click on your computer and “DEL“or”F1“or”F2“or”F10” enter BIOS (CMOS) installation utility.
(The method of accessing the BIOS settings depends on the computer manufacturer).
- In the BIOS menu “Download procedure“adjustment.
(This setting is usually “located inAdvanced BIOS features” menu).
- At”Download procedure” setting, install the CD/DVDRW device first boot device.
- Save and Exit From the BIOS settings.
2. Click on the first screen The next one.
3. On the next screen, selectRepair your computer“.
4. Yes System Restore Options (Screen 1) Click next.
5. Yes Select the recovery tool screen, select Command line.
6. In the command window, type “regedit” (without quotes) and press Enter.
In the registry editor:
7. highlight the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE the key.
8. From whom File select the menu Download Hive (to load the offline registry).
9. Go to the drive where Windows is installed (for example, “C:”).
10. Opening the system file found in “%”.Windir%\system32\config\“directory. (eg,”C:\Windows\system32\config\system”)
11. Enter a key name for the offline registry (eg “Offline“) and press OK.
12. Double click to expand HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE button and below it there should be a new key named with the name you typed earlier (eg ‘offline” in this example).
13. Expand this new key and navigate (from the left pane) to this subkey:
14. Double click on the right panel Start (DWORD) and change its value data 0 (zero). press OK when finished.
15. Make the same change to this subkey:
16. If you are using RAID (otherwise skip this step), you need to make the same change to this switch:
17. After finishing the changes, specify the key that you created earlier (for example, “Offline“) and select from the File menu Download Hive to overwrite the changes made to the offline registry.
18. Shut down Registry Editor, Command Prompt window and Restart your computer.
19. Enter the BIOS settings and select the SATA mode (IDE-ATA, AHCI or RAID) depending on your needs or leave the default settings.
20. Exit the BIOS setup, remove the Windows installation DVD from the CD/DVD drive and allow Windows to start normally.
Windows should start without a problem and then install the necessary hard disk controller drivers.