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Windows XP - Moving a WinXP installation to a new motherboard.

Connecting a hard disk containing a WinXP installation for one motherboard design to a new motherboard of a different design is likely to cause the PC to continuously reboot without getting close to reaching the desktop.  Even Safe Mode will not let you in.  If you have fast enough eyes you may read an error screen which is displayed for a couple of micro-seconds which probably refers to "Stop 0x0000007B".

Microsoft do not seem to have anticipated that a user would ever want to upgrade the motherboard, even though the motherboard ID is one of the parameters used in the Licence Activation algorithm.  They do provide a rather cryptically titled KnowledgeBase article (Q314082) called "You Receive a Stop 0x0000007B Error After You Move the Windows XP System Disk to Another Computer" which is actually aimed at this very issue.  Intel have a web page at which provides rather more detail on this issue.

Basically it seems that WinXP needs to know the hardware manufacturer's ID and the hardware ID for the IDE controller before it will load Windows. The Windows 95 - ME family did not have this problem nor did WinNT.  The ID in question (called the PnP ID) is used to identify which device driver file to use.  From this one can infer that WinXP will not autodetect changes to the IDE controller on boot.

Fortunately there is a fairly easy solution which is likely to work in most cases providing the hard disk controller has a device driver provided by Microsoft on the XP install CD.  You can check by looking in the Setupapi.log in the C:\Windows folder.  Search for "MSHDC.INF" and find an entry which includes something like "PCI\VEN_10B9&DEV_5215=%SystemRoot%\inf\Mshdc.inf".

The number after VEN (1089 is this case) is the manufacturer ID, the number after DEV (5215) is the Device ID.  Microsoft provide drivers for the following devices:

Manufacturer Device
1089 (ALI) 5215,5219,5229
1097 (Appian) 0038
1095 (CMD Tech) 0640,0646,0648,0649
0E11 (Compaq) AE33
8086 (Intel) 1222,1230,7010,7111,2411,2421
1042 (PC Tech) 1000
1039 (SiS) 0601,5513
10AD (Symphony Labs) 0001,0150
105A (Promise Tech) 4D33
1106 (Via) 0571
1055 (Standard Micro) 9130
1176 (Toshiba) 0105

If the new motherboard's IDE controller is in this list the following solution will almost certainly work for Windows XP Home and Pro, original release and SP1.

Start with the hard disk still attached to the old (working) motherboard.  Download this Zip file, extract the 4 sys files into C:\Windows\System32\drivers (probably overwriting later versions, its OK). Extract the file MergeIde.reg, double click on it so that the contents will be merged into the Registry.

Now shut down the system and move the hard disk to the new motherboard. Most likely the system will not boot and start the usual hardware detection process.



Last modified: January 03, 2008