Question Do I need to reinstall Win10 after changing my motherboard & CPU?

Jimper

Commendable
Mar 9, 2020
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Do I need to reinstall Win10 after changing my motherboard & CPU?

Do I need to install from a boot USB from fresh or just let Win10 do it's thing and just reactivate my copy of Win10 in the settings?
 
Depends.
If it is a very similar motherboard, same chipset etc... then you are probably ok with a reset.
If it is totally different. 2 or 3 generations or Intel to AMD a NEW fresh install is recommended.
Otherwise you will most likely have small random errors or performance issues that never go away.
 

Jimper

Commendable
Mar 9, 2020
27
5
1,535
0
Do I need to reinstall Win10 after changing my motherboard & CPU?

Do I need to install from a boot USB from fresh or just let Win10 do it's thing and just reactivate my copy of Win10 in the settings?
I'm going from a i5 9600K/ Z390 mobo to i5 12600K/Z690 mobo
 

geofelt

Titan
Most will recommend a new windows install.
Easy for them, they do not need to do the work.
But, that will involve reinstalling apps(steam excepted) which might be difficult.
I would first protect yourself for whatever you cherish on the C drive.
Perhaps clone your C drive first.
Try to boot on the new motherboard and cpu.
If it will boot, install the new motherboard drivers and you will likely be ok.
 
Either way, whatever data you have on your C:\ drive that you can't live without you should put somewhere else just in case.

The only thing that you'll definitely have to do is reactivate it, as the motherboard is considered the computer as far as Windows licensing is concerned.
 
Hey there,

You're better off reinstalling Windows for a mobo/cpu change. Whilst you may get by with not doing a fresh install, chances are you will be dealing with error messgaes, old drivers causing conflict among possibly more issues.

Whilst downloading steam game files might be annoying (you may have these on the HDD already though), it's a lot easier than trying to troubleshoot random issues caused by old drivers for hardware that isn't even there.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
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Swapping the motherboard and using the same drive_OS, 3 possible outcomes:

  1. It works just fine
  2. It fails completely
  3. It "works", but you're chasing issues for weeks/months.
I've personally seen all 3.

When you read here and elsewhere "it is likely to work"....that really means "Prepare for 100% fail"

If you just slap it together hoping it works, but then it does not...then what do you do.

Prepare.
Try it.
If it works, great.
If it fails...then you are fully ready for a complete wipe and reinstall.
 

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