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Motherboard replacement problems RRS feed

  • Question

  • I'm trying to replace the mobo and processor in my WHS but am having a real problem, with the new hardware in place, the system will post then straight away it reboots, this continues until i switch off the power.
    It's not a problem with the mobo as i have set that up in s test system with an install of vista, and it works fine, it's not any other hardware in the whs as that all works fine in the old configeration. So next i pulled the whs system harddrive out and put that in as the main drive in the test sytem and guess what? the system will post but then keep restarting right after post until i switch, so it must be the system drive from the WHS. Does the home server OS imbed your main sysyem hardware settings so deeply that a mobo replacement is not possible unless you strip the drive clean and perform a clean install? if it does then that's a real pain in the backside.
    Anyone else experianced this sort of problem?
    Saturday, April 19, 2008 9:51 PM

Answers

  • The best way to replace the motherboard in a WHS system is to replace the hardware, then to immediately do a server reinstallation. It's often possible to get everything working by swapping hardware abstraction layers for the new MB, but frankly it's completely unsupported by anyone, has a good chance of hosing your server up completely if you make a mistake, and might well take longer than a reinstallation would. This is pretty much standard in your situation, I'm afraid.

    A server reinstallation will preserve the data on your secondary storage pool drives. It's an additional option when, at the beginning of setup, you're asked what kind of installation you want to perform. Note that server reinstallation is only available to you if all of your secondary storage pool drives are present and visible; if you needed to load drivers to get them working you will need to do so again.
    Sunday, April 20, 2008 4:08 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • The best way to replace the motherboard in a WHS system is to replace the hardware, then to immediately do a server reinstallation. It's often possible to get everything working by swapping hardware abstraction layers for the new MB, but frankly it's completely unsupported by anyone, has a good chance of hosing your server up completely if you make a mistake, and might well take longer than a reinstallation would. This is pretty much standard in your situation, I'm afraid.

    A server reinstallation will preserve the data on your secondary storage pool drives. It's an additional option when, at the beginning of setup, you're asked what kind of installation you want to perform. Note that server reinstallation is only available to you if all of your secondary storage pool drives are present and visible; if you needed to load drivers to get them working you will need to do so again.
    Sunday, April 20, 2008 4:08 AM
    Moderator
  • Don't forget also, that this is an OEM product. As such, the only motherboard you 'should' be replacing is a dead one, with another one of the same make/model, as the licence is tied to that first install.

    Microsoft hasn't worried too much up till now; when I changed mine and had to re-register, they were only concerned that it was only on one machine.

    Further to Ken's point about the HAL abstract, you are creating a server, which presumably is going to store your most valuable information; do you really want a system that just manages to work, or a system re-installed to take note of the new hardware.

     

    Colin

    Sunday, April 20, 2008 10:15 AM
  • the reason for the "upgrade" is that i'm having hardware problems with the mobo, random restarts usb ports no longer funtioning etc, plus the board is pretty old (about 3 years) so i've taken the opportunity to upgrade my main desktop machine, and move that hardware into my server.

     

    Sunday, April 20, 2008 10:39 AM
  • That's fine, and I don't think you'll have much of an issue with reactivating the product (you'll likely have to make a phone call to explain that it's not running on more than one PC), but trying to swap HALs is asking for trouble. Yes, it works most of the time. But when it doesn'nt the results are likely not to be pretty.

    As long as all your drives are connected to your new MB correctly, so that the system drive is the first one the BIOS presents and all the other drives are visible to setup, you shouldn't have a problem with reinstallation. It'll take a while (even longer than usual for WHS) because WHS will verify all your tombstones during reinstallation,
    Sunday, April 20, 2008 1:27 PM
    Moderator
  •  ColinWH wrote:

    Don't forget also, that this is an OEM product. As such, the only motherboard you 'should' be replacing is a dead one, with another one of the same make/model,

    This is often impossible as the product lifecycle for mobos can be pretty quick and many of us have installed WHS on older systems.

    Monday, April 21, 2008 1:49 AM
  • The way you, me or others use WHS doesn't negate the Licence Agreement that you agreed to when you installed WHS. So M/s would be well within their rights to say 'no'. That is why Companies that build server products have the guaranteed life cycle on their products/spares.

     

    Colin

    Monday, April 21, 2008 9:48 AM
  •  wayner9 wrote:
     ColinWH wrote:

    Don't forget also, that this is an OEM product. As such, the only motherboard you 'should' be replacing is a dead one, with another one of the same make/model,

    This is often impossible as the product lifecycle for mobos can be pretty quick and many of us have installed WHS on older systems.

     

    this is my situation exactly, old mobo from old system dead.

    I really hate product activation, at the end of the day i've paid the money to MS and as long as it is only installed on 1 pc it's no skin of their nose. Well i'll be making the call later today and see what they say.

    Monday, April 21, 2008 10:19 AM
  •  

    Probably because it's trying to load drivers for the drive controller that is no longer there so it crashes and restarts. WHS is expecting to find your old hardware, it doesn't know how to handle the new hardware which required different drivers than the one installed.

     

    Monday, April 21, 2008 5:30 PM
  •  

    I have had new motherboards die after only a year or so, it can happen even with NEW hardware... nothing is guaranteed which is partly why DE is great tech, redundancy is part of what makes it a server in the truest sense.

     

    Monday, April 21, 2008 5:48 PM
  • Well,  I've been playing with motherboards recently to limited success

     

    Originally had WHS installed with an old PCChips board (754 socket) with DDR and a Sempron

     

    Tried moving to a Gigabyte GA-945GCM-S2L board with a Celeron D.  Proved unstable (crashing the server on backups).  Tried an Intel D915GAG, still unstable.  So back to PCChips!

     

    In both cases tried a new installation to get round the problems with no luck

     

    Had to phone Microsoft at one point as it wouldn't activate and came up with the product id thing.  They were fine and gave me the corresponding code

     

    Anyone else had issues with Gigabyte or Intel

    Wednesday, April 23, 2008 10:14 AM

  • Is there a site with step by step instructions for changing a MB in WHS?

    Monday, January 19, 2009 9:58 PM
  • Gerry Conway said:


    Is there a site with step by step instructions for changing a MB in WHS?



    Hi Gerry,
    no, there is not. Some points which may help:
    • keep drivers for the new hardware ready (especially storage controller and LAN adapter may matter), ideally Windows Server 2003 drivers, in some cases also Windows XP drivers may do the job
    • use chipset and processor in the same family
    • connect the primary disk to the first port of the new SATA controller
    • if system does not boot, try to change the SATA controller mode in Bios to IDE (ATA, SATA), avoid RAID
    • if the system still does not reboot, boot from the WHS DVD and perform a Server Reinstall (no new installation). This would only wipe the System volume.

    Best greetings from Germany
    Olaf
    Monday, January 19, 2009 10:11 PM
    Moderator
  • I have a similar problem but I don't have the option to reinstall - the only difference I can see is that because the drives are connected in a different way to the old board, they may not be in the same sequence - is that enough to cause it to think it is not an existing setup requiring reinstallation? How can I preserve my existing data?
    Monday, February 1, 2010 5:28 PM
  • Hi David,
    if you cannot get a reinstall offered (and no, besides the first disk the sequence should not play a role for detecting data volumes) you can still follow the FAQ How to recover data after server failure.
    Best greetings from Germany
    Olaf

    Monday, February 1, 2010 8:43 PM
    Moderator