Hardware upgrade with Windows 7 already installed

Subject: Hardware upgrade with Windows 7 already installed
From: Ken Poshedly <poshedly -at- bellsouth -dot- net>
To: Techwr-l <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 12 May 2014 10:51:38 -0700 (PDT)

So . . . I "upgraded" the home desktop platform from Windows XP to Windows 7 Home Premium using the "generic" drivers and such from the Microsoft DVD, but retained the existing ASUS P5KC motherboard, Intel duo-core processor and DDR2 RAM hardware.

For the most part, things are running fine but with a few exceptions:

* The system goes into hibernation just fine (with no active input, the monitor goes dark and the computer fan shuts down, but everything comes back up as soon as I move the mouse or press the Enter key), but it won't actually shut down when told to do so; instead, the monitor displays "System is shutting down" and goes dark, but the fan stays running. I've confirmed that the checkbox for shutting the fan down at power-down is checked (via Control Panel) and that the latest drivers for this motherboard and BIOS are installed. (So I press and hold the main power button to shut the system down. I know many folks leave their systems running for weeks at a time, but I power mine down every day or two.)
* When I zoom in for a close-up view while using Google Earth, the on-board video display craps out and then recovers; the screen message states "Display driver stopped responding and has recovered". And yes, the latest video driver is installed.

An American-based ASUS customer rep told me the P5KC motherboard simply does not support Windows 7. Yep, this is what happens when you take care of your stuff and keep it running.

Knowing that other surprises may be encountered with this set-up, I bit the bullet and sprung the $325 for an MSI motherboard, AMD quad-core processor and 8 GB of RAM (with the motherboard capable of 32 GB).

The question s are:

1. How much -- if any -- benefit will I see with all this additional RAM? My main program line-up is FrameMaker 10, Adobe Acrobat Pro 9.0, some other Adobe things and, yes, Microsoft Office 10 for those "special times". My FM files (probably like many of yours) can be very graphics-intensive, so I assume the new RAM will come in handy there.

2. With my 1 TB hard drive already partitioned into C and D (programs on C, data files on D) and in use for a few weeks already, must I reformat the C-drive when I install the new motherboard/processor/ram setup, and if so, how to do it without overwriting the D-drive. I'm using the former internal 1TB hard drive as an external HD, so it's "available" as an assist device if needed.

Answer here or privately, but no barbs please, just details, details and more details.

-- Ken in Atlanta
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