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Windows 7: Reinstalling OEM Win 7 on a different Hard Drive?

19 Sep 2012   #1

Windows 10 64 bit
Reinstalling OEM Win 7 on a different Hard Drive?

I currently have OEM version of Win 7 installed on an SSD. I plan on reinstalling Win 7 on a hard drive and using the SSD for samples for my recording system (a better use for the SSD in my application).

The question, since I have an OEM version, will I run into problems activating it with the different hardware (the hard drive)?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Sep 2012   #2
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ult. x64


Nope, there should be no problem at all - with OEM's its the motherboard that counts.

Good reference for the install if you need it:
Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Sep 2012   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit


The OEM restriction is for motherboards. If you changed motherboards, you'd likely have an activation issue.

Although there are reports from time to time that Microsoft can be forgiving about new motherboards---apparently acknowledging that motherboards do fail and that an OEM shouldn't prevent you from replacing a motherboard, particularly with the exact same model.

MS apparently handles motherboard/OEM issue on a case by case basis, depending on who you plead your case to over the phone.

But I've never heard of any problems with a hard drive swap.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

19 Sep 2012   #4

Windows 10 64 bit

Thanks. I knew about the motherboard issue, I had to go through that a couple of years ago as I had an Intel M/B go bad and Intel replaced it under warranty with an identical board but I had to go through the telephone procedure to get it activated.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Reinstalling OEM Win 7 on a different Hard Drive?

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