PC hardware--CPU & Motherboard & RAM/HP Pavilion re-build


I had previously corrosponded with Scott about rebuilding an HP Pavilion (XP).  Through his reccomendation I have purchased a new MB (ASUS P8Z77-M) and new CPU (Intel i3).  Fromn the restart, this is my secondary computer, Windows XP, for Adobe Illustrator 9.0, Photoshop 6.5, and Simcity 4.  The video had died, and additional video card no-go.  So, either MB or CPU. My primary computer is Windows 7, but I want this one exclusive XP with the HD I already have.  After intalling the MB and CPU, I realize I need a new PSU with this MB.  Planning on a Corsair 850AX, for the proper power pin numbers.  Have SATA HD and DVD plugged into the 6g slots.  3 concerns/questions: 1) The power on button, I had to remove the individual pins to hook it up - Is ther a button/cable set purchaseable?  2) Do I have BIOS issues I have to deal with using my previous HD?  3) Are there any other components I need for completing this re-build?

I'm not understanding your first question RE the power button, but the other two:

2) You will need to reformat and re-install the operating system with a MB swap. Both for licencing reasons, and for stability/performance reasons (Windows doesn't like being "hotswapped" - the machine may not even boot properly without a reformat, and if it does, performance/stability will be unpredictable). The phrase "rebuild" is quite inaccurate in this setting (and unfortunately I think it's yet another "drag over" from the endless automotive analogies that writers love to apply to IT concepts - a new motherboard is effectively a new computer, no matter what enclosure you're recycling).

3) Would need to know about the rest of the hardware in the system and what you have on-hand to determine that.

I'm skeptical you need an 850W PSU (by any stretch of the imagination) for an i3 and basic videocard, and it will be relatively inefficient to use such a large PSU for this machine (ideally you would load an ATX PSU between 20% and 80% to see the best efficiency). Something in the 400-500W range would be more than suitable, and allow for expansion down the road. I like Enermax and Antec, but Corsair has produced a number of good units over the years.

Regarding Windows XP itself - I'd be somewhat cautious with getting too attached; Microsoft is going ahead with end-of-support (which means no more patching/service packs/etc) in April 2014. It is generally not considered "safe" to deploy an unsupported operating system on an Internet connected network. If the machine is meant to be "offline" that is another story altogether (and I would encourage you to ensure the machine is as up-to-date as possible before April 2014), and presents minimal risk to your network.

More is available from Microsoft, here:


PC hardware--CPU & Motherboard & RAM

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