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Windows 7: Transferring hard drive with OEM 7 to new motherboard/build


04 Nov 2011   #1

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 
Transferring hard drive with OEM 7 to new motherboard/build

I don't know a whole lot about computers, so I thought I would ask for help concerning my OEM version of Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit.

I have a Small Form Factor Acer computer that I am wanting to strip for parts (the CPU, memory, optical drive) for my new build. So I bought a case, a PSU, a GPU, more RAM, and a motherboard. Then, before I actually started taking things apart, it occurred to me that I might not be able to just "plug and play", so to speak. I thought that perhaps there could be driver conflicts, or worse yet because then a friend told me that OEM means that my OS is "tied" to my mini-ITX motherboard and that that I will have to buy a whole new Windows 7.

Is this true? I was hoping that I could just leave my current installation as is and just move the HDD over to the new build, but it seems that my version of Windows 7 will not allow this.

I hope this is the right place for this thread. Thank you very much for any help you can provide.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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04 Nov 2011   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate x64/Windows 8 Consumer Preview x64/Ubuntu 11.04
 
 

Unfortunately, OEM licenses of Windows 7 can only be installed on one motherboard. Unless the reason for the new motherboard is a defect of some sort, the OS will be unable to be licensed on the new motherboard. For more information, read the following excerpt from the Microsoft Licensing FAQ.

Quote:
Q. Can a PC with an OEM Windows operating system have its motherboard upgraded and keep the same license? What if it was replaced because it was defective?

A. Generally, an end user can upgrade or replace all of the hardware components on a computer—except the motherboard—and still retain the license for the original Microsoft OEM operating system software. If the motherboard is upgraded or replaced for reasons other than a defect, then a new computer has been created. Microsoft OEM operating system software cannot be transferred to the new computer, and the license of new operating system software is required. If the motherboard is replaced because it is defective, you do not need to acquire a new operating system license for the PC as long as the replacement motherboard is the same make/model or the same manufacturer's replacement/equivalent, as defined by the manufacturer's warranty.

The reason for this licensing rule primarily relates to the End User Software License Terms and the support of the software covered by that End User Software License Terms. The End User Software License Terms is a set of usage rights granted to the end user by the PC manufacturer and relates only to rights for that software as installed on that particular PC. The system builder is required to support the software on the original PC. Understanding that end users, over time, upgrade their PCs with different components, Microsoft needed to have one base component "left standing" that would still define the original PC. Since the motherboard contains the CPU and is the "heart and soul" of the PC, when the motherboard is replaced (for reasons other than defect) a new PC is essentially created. The original system builder did not manufacture this new PC, and therefore cannot be expected to support it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Nov 2011   #3

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Thank you very much for responding with this helpful information.

The OS costs around $200, right?

What about if for now, due to financial constraints, I simply took the mini-ITX motherboard with all of its components and simply put them into the new ATX case, and then added my other new components? Then I would just let the new ATX motherboard sit for a while until I can buy a new copy of Windows 7? From that Q&A, it sounds like that would work?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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04 Nov 2011   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64/Windows 8 Consumer Preview x64/Ubuntu 11.04
 
 

Sure, that will work fine. Microsoft allows all hardware upgrades except motherboards. So as long as you keep the original motherboard, you should be right.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Nov 2011   #5

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Thanks so much for your help! I'll mark this one as solved. I will get Windows 7 in a couple of months, but this is a workable solution until that time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Nov 2011   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64/Windows 8 Consumer Preview x64/Ubuntu 11.04
 
 

No worries. If you need any more help just come back and post again.

Good luck!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Nov 2011   #7

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Oh! One quick question! Since I am wanting to put my mini-ITX motherboard into a new case, do ATX cases that are compatible with ATX and Micro-ATX motherboards also always mount mini-ITX boards? If so, that greatly softens the blow of this whole Windows 7 fiasco haha.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Nov 2011   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

No problem, if you choose to believe this:

Mini ITX Specifications | eHow.com

Mini-ITX motherboards can fit into ATX, Micro-ATX and FlexATX cases, as the mounting holes, I/O (Input/Output) panel and expansion slot are in the same locations as ATX specifications. ATX and ITX power supplies can also work with the Mini-ITX form factor.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Nov 2011   #9

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Interesting. Thanks!

Unfortunately I realized that my mini-ITX motherboard doesn't have a PCI-E 16 slot. It sounds like I'm going to have to get Windows 7 Home Premium before I should bother to touch anything.

On a positive note, I have learned some very valuable things about computers and software. Ultimately...build from the ground up.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Nov 2011   #10

W7 X-64 W8.1 X-64 Opensuse 13.1 W2003 Server
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Frosst View Post
Thanks so much for your help! I'll mark this one as solved. I will get Windows 7 in a couple of months, but this is a workable solution until that time.
Hi there
another solution is that you could try the FREE windows 8 developer edition -- download from the ms site --it's pre beta but from my own tests and looking at the companion Forum to this one (windows 8) it's stable and fast.

Most drivers work -- and you can run this on as many different hardware combinations you want -- W8 is already pre-activated.

Personally this is what I would do in this case -- licensed software such as OFFICE can be moved to another machine -- no problem it's just the OEM Windows 7 os that can't be moved from the original machine.

Cheers
jimbo
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