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I am considering moving my hardware to another case. I have a Compaq and a HP desktop. Are the instructions provided with new cases sufficient for an inexperienced person too safely relocate the motherboard to another case? I have no trouble with hard drives and small stuff like that, however the thought of relocating a motherboiard is rather intimidating. I am happy withmy system hardware, but the allotted space inside the stock cases is insufficient to poke in all my goodies, like drives, fans, optical devices, and such. My existing cases are alright, but the front panel does not give me access to the devices I need to use, like card readers, and hard drive shuttle bays. Any thoughts? I plan to make the change for either, or both, depending how the first works out. I have one Athlon 1800+ and one P3 650. They are plenty fast enough, so really ain't considering changing motherboards. Thanks.....

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Last Post by TallCool1
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I am considering moving my hardware to another case. I have a Compaq and a HP desktop. Are the instructions provided with new cases sufficient for an inexperienced person too safely relocate the motherboard to another case? I plan to make the change for either, or both, depending how the first works out. I have one Athlon 1800+ and one P3 650.

It may depend on which machine is which. Compaq formerly used custom motherboards, as did HP, but Compaq persisted later. Compare the two motherboards. One giveaway is power supply connectors, another is mounting-hole placement. Yet another is back-panel layout -- on an ATX motherboard (the current standard), most of the connectors fit a standard layout, and if they come close to matching, that's a clue.

As far as case assembly instructions go, it's not really hard. There are books available, as well as a variety of Internet sites that provide some basics; Google is your friend. If you can find the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and their model numbers for the motherboards, all the better--you can download the user manuals, usually in PDF format.

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Thaks muchly. I'll rip into these computers and try to get the info I need. thaks again...

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The biggest proplem I had when i first did this was with the front panel wires and where they plug into the mother board .

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The biggest problem I had when I first did this was with the front panel wires and where they plug into the motherboard.

Good point, CJ. It's a good idea to make a diagram of the connectors before unplugging the wires; MBs are sometimes not marked too clearly, and even if they are, polarity markings may be hard to read. Quadrille paper is useful for clear diagrams.

Another tip (and one that just bit a friend) is to note what kind of battery is used for the clock and CMOS. They are known as "coin cells". This way, if it goes south, you can get the battery before you have to tear down the system. In fact, I would replace the cell on the PIII board before I put it in the case as a preventive measure. They are cheap, and widely available. Even Radio Shack has a good selection of them.

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