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Windows 7: Can I put Win 7 HDD in anothe PC without licensing/activation problems

14 Feb 2018   #1
MattS9000

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 
Can I put Win 7 HDD in anothe PC without licensing/activation problems

Hi.

We have a broken PC with Windows 7 Pro x64.

Can I just take the HDD out and put it in a working PC? Or will I run into problems with serial numbers and activation?

Thanks. (First post, hope this is the right forum)


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Feb 2018   #2
Layback Bear

Windows 10 Pro. 64/ version 1709 Windows 7 Pro/64
 
 

Some basics.
If your Windows 7 is (OEM) version it can not legally be moved to another computer. A (OEM) version is locked to the first computer it was activated on.
Most have (OEM).

If you have a (Retail) version it can be moved from one computer to another computer, but can only be on one computer at a time.
Most don't have (Retail Versions).

This may help.

What - Microsoft Community

Jack
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2018   #3
samuria

win 8 32 bit
 
 

Depending on the new hardware it may not work as the drivers will be wrong it may not activate if MS thinks its a new pc
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Feb 2018   #4
MattS9000

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Great. Thanks for your replies.

Unfortunately it is OEM, so I guess I have to look at another solution. I was just hoping not to have to install all the software again, set up email accounts etc...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2018   #5
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

You can probably do what you suggest.

1) You may have to use something like this to make it bootable on new hardware.

Make Windows 7 bootable after motherboard swap - Windows 7 Help Forums

2) You need a valid key which you can insert.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2018   #6
JoWazzoo

Windows 7 Pro 64
 
 

The hard drive works and something else is broken on the first PC?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2018   #7
MattS9000

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by SIW2 View Post
You can probably do what you suggest.

1) You may have to use something like this to make it bootable on new hardware.

Make Windows 7 bootable after motherboard swap - Windows 7 Help Forums

2) You need a valid key which you can insert.
Cool. That looks promising. Thanks.

I hope it's only temporary. I suspect a dodgy power supply. If so, I can replace it, put the HDD back in the original PC and save myself all the time installing software and setting up a new PC. But we need to keep going for the next few days.. that PC has the payroll software on it and we probably don't want to stop paying people
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2018   #8
MattS9000

Windows 7 Pro x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JoWazzoo View Post
The hard drive works and something else is broken on the first PC?
I actually haven't checked out the broken PC yet. I was out all day and heard about it by phone, no details, just "the computer has shat itself"

We work in an extremely hot and dusty environment, it kills computers regularly. The hardware is cheap enough to replace, but the time setting up a new install is too much.

I suspect power supply. If the HDD is dead I have a whole new problem to deal with (We do have backups though)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2018   #9
SIW2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

!) You should be able to get it boot on the new machine using the tutorial I linked.

2) Re the license.
If you don't input a valid license key I can't recall how long it will keep working before going into reduced functionality mode.

If you get hold of a retail/system builder license key for the same edition, you can insert it and it should activate fine, then should be good forever
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2018   #10
mrjimphelps

Linux Mint 18.2 xfce 64-bit (VMWare host) / Windows 8.1 Pro 32-bit (VMWare guest)
 
 

Just curious, the answer to the following question has never been clear to me:

If I have one or more bad parts in my OEM computer, and I replace those parts one at a time, does there come a point when Microsoft no longer considers it the same computer for OEM license requirements?

It seems to me that if only one part was bad, and I replaced it, it would still be the same computer. If then another part goes bad, and I replace it, it is still the same computer. At what point does it become a different computer? Does a certain amount of time need to elapse between replacing each part in order for it to stay the same computer? Or does it become a different computer after a certain number of parts have been replaced?
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 Can I put Win 7 HDD in anothe PC without licensing/activation problems




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