Question Motherboard swap / unactivated Windows

Aug 20, 2020
26
1
35
0
Hi, I'm swapping out an a320 for an x470 motherboard. I have windows 10 home and loads of programs installed. Windows is NOT activated.

I know the safest thing to do is a clean install but I saw a post recently suggesting I could try booting from my win 10 installation USB and running "repair" rather than a fresh install. Didn't bookmark the post and now can't find it!

Does anybody know if the OS not being activated is better or worse in terms of potential driver problems etc when attempting to keep the existing OS installation?
 
Aug 20, 2020
26
1
35
0
Great, thanks both.

Would you recommend trying the repair option before a full install? I've got no important data that isn't backed up so as long as I'm not risking damaging hardware in any way (?) I'm willing to try just to save the hours taken reinstalling everything I need.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
129,373
5,217
165,040
20,022
Great, thanks both.

Would you recommend trying the repair option before a full install? I've got no important data that isn't backed up so as long as I'm not risking damaging hardware in any way (?) I'm willing to try just to save the hours taken reinstalling everything I need.
You can try it, but I'd rather bypass the whole "finding out problems later", and start with a clean slate.
 

Math Geek

Champion
Ambassador
generally the "programs" people want to save are usually games since they are such big downloads these days.

steam games can be backed-up and saved for use later as can a few other items. if you explained what it is you want to avoid reinstalling, perhaps we could offer some ideas to save a bit of work if at all possible. :)

a fresh install is still the way to go once anything is backed-up that can be as others have noted. i've seen it work and not work and more often than not, it does not work well.
 
Aug 20, 2020
26
1
35
0
There's only GTAV games-wise though it did take an eternity to download but also video editing software and audio editing software that I just like to know I have ready to go and it often takes me days to remember what it all was!
 

Math Geek

Champion
Ambassador
no problem. the editing software will need to be reinstalled.

personally i take a fresh install as a way to weed out programs i don't need anymore. i just reinstall as i need things and if i don't need it again, it does not get reinstalled. i used to make lists and sit for hours getting it all back installed, until i realized many things i only used a couple times and then never again.

i'm sure you know what you use daily and need to put back ASAP, but the others sit back and see if you actually need them again before installing. or go through your installed list and write it all down so you can go nuts right away and have an install party.

check and see if you can export settings and such from the editing software. i know it can take a while to get it configured how you want it. there may be a way to save and then import the settings once it is reinstalled.

good luck and enjoy the fresh install :)
 
Reactions: DFace1_2
Aug 20, 2020
26
1
35
0
Cool, thank you. I'm going with what you said and have made a comprehensive list of everything I've got in case I want to reinstall.

One more question - seen so many people saying not to format m.2 SSD - when I boot from USB to do a clean install once I've made the hardware changes, will the installer ask if I want to format my m.2 (where I'm planning to put the OS) and, if so, is it it safe to do so?
 

Math Geek

Champion
Ambassador
formatting is fine, i think it is defrag you mean to avoid.

formatting is simply setting up the file index and other partition needs. no problem with that at all. clear out all partitions on the m.2 and then start fresh. windows will put back what it needs and it'll run nice and smooth for awhile :)

nothing to worry about with a simple format. keep in mind the ssd only has so many writes before it can't be written to anymore. so folks like to avoid any un-needed write operations such as defrag and other drive "optimizations". same goes for secure wipes of data since they overwrite the space many times to ensure files are destroyed completely. there are other ways to secure wipe an ssd that saves those precious write cycles.
 
Aug 20, 2020
26
1
35
0
Ah yes it was defragging I meant thanks. Head spinning with tech info lately.

I had previously been just using the m2 for all storage. Bad idea given the limited write cycles?
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
129,373
5,217
165,040
20,022
Ah yes it was defragging I meant thanks. Head spinning with tech info lately.

I had previously been just using the m2 for all storage. Bad idea given the limited write cycles?
No.
That "write cycle limit" while an actual number, is HUGE.
Each specific cell has a limited number of writes. The drive firmware shuffles data around, to even the wear out across the whole drive space.

Solid State drives wearing out from too many write cycles is a thing of the past. The long dead past.
You'll have moved that drive to 2 new PCs from now, before you get to 10-20% of the warranty write cycles.

Not a concern, at all.
If it dies, it will be something else.


My system is SSD only. All 7 drives combined barely exceed the warranty lifespan of the single oldest and smallest.
 
Reactions: DFace1_2

Math Geek

Champion
Ambassador
storage is a great use since it can read all it wants. that is not limited at all. so you only right the data once and read it a lot will let it last forever.

keep in mind though write is limited, it is usually ample for daily use. look at the drive specs for "total bytes written" and then do some simple math. for instance the WD blue sn550 500gb drive has an endurance of 300 tb written. that means you can write the full 500 gb drive once every day for 600 days or almost 2 years. this is highly unlikely you'll do that. maybe 100 gb a day would still be kind of high. that's 3000 days!!!

higher quality drives have even better endurance so its not really worth worrying about
 
Reactions: DFace1_2

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS