Question New motherboard = New Win 10 license?

KarlKarrlander

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May 7, 2015
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Hey everyone,

I've bought some new parts: Ryzen 7 3700X, Asus B550-F Motherboard, 1 TB SSD and 32 GB 3200 mhz RAM.
My current system (custom built) has an old i5-4670K and DDR3 RAM & the old socket motherboard. This Windows license was originally a 7 Home Premium OEM, which is now a Win 10 Home version.

My questions is simple: Do I need a new Win 10 license key in order to install Windows with the new motherboard? Or can I simply just connect my old SSD with the already installed Win version on it?

Gut feeling is that new motherboard and old OEM = new Windows license.

Thoughts?

Thanks :)
 

eazy11

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Jan 12, 2017
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OEM license = tied to the very first computer, can't be transferred to another
RETAIL license = can be transferred to another computer
So unfortunately you won't be able to use that license on your new build.
 
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AdamG

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Dec 21, 2013
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Connecting old SSD to new system would not be a good idea since that old ssd install, aside from being OEM tied to the original equipment manufacturer and ineligible for normal transfer to new system as previously mentioned, also has the old intel motherboard and chipset/system drivers so it wouldn't be surprising to blue screen upon attempting to boot into it.
 
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KarlKarrlander

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OEM license = tied to the very first computer, can't be transferred to another
RETAIL license = can be transferred to another computer
So unfortunately you won't be able to use that license on your new build.
Hi,
Thanks, I suspected as much and ordered a new license key just in case!
 

KarlKarrlander

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Connecting old SSD to new system would not be a good idea since that old ssd install, aside from being OEM tied to the original equipment manufacturer and ineligible for normal transfer to new system as previously mentioned, also has the old intel motherboard and chipset/system drivers so it wouldn't be surprising to blue screen upon attempting to boot into it.
Hey,
Good input, haven't really thought about that yet (going from chipset to another and having an OEM file on it and so on).
I have a lot of system files and installations that I don't want to lose, what do you recommend in terms of backing it up? I have a 1 TB HDD disk installed that has a bunch of space.
Or should I just reinstall the files and installations on the new SSD once it's booted with the new Windows license?
 

KarlKarrlander

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Win 7 upgraded to WIn 10, the license is almost certainly transferable to new hardware.

For the OS activation, read and do this before you change any parts:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/20530/windows-10-reactivating-after-hardware-change


It WILL need a fresh install, but you didn't need to buy a new license.
Will this really work?

Let me clarify, the original license was Windows 7 OEM on a CD. Years later I upgraded it to Windows 10 through the Microsoft update center.

If I install a new motherboard and cpu, (which is now AMD/AM4) can I take the old SSD with the current Win installation file on it, and plug it into the "new" system and boot up from there? Then use the same activation key from the original box in order to activate the license?

Or will I need to take an entirely new license key and install it onto my new SSD in order to get a functional OS?

Sorry for the questions!
 

USAFRet

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The Upgrade from Win 7 to Win 10 did away with its original OEMness.
You do NOT use the original Win 7 license. That is null and void, after the upgrade to 10.

Verify the Win 10 is linked to a MS account with a digital license. It should be.
After the clean install on the new hardware, that is when you go through the activation troubleshooter, and tell it "I'm using this PC now"


Yes, it should work.
Yes, I've done this personally.

You have nothing to lose by trying.
 

Mr.Spock

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just dump your current key with a utility like Belarc, you may be able to re-use it regardless. You can also tie the current installation to your Microsoft account if that's the only one you have and then transfer it to the new installation that way. keep your old system drive separate so you can retry if all else fails
 

Quanticriver

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USAFRet is 100pct correct
The Upgrade from Win 7 to Win 10 did away with its original OEMness.
You do NOT use the original Win 7 license. That is null and void, after the upgrade to 10.

Verify the Win 10 is linked to a MS account with a digital license. It should be.
After the clean install on the new hardware, that is when you go through the activation troubleshooter, and tell it "I'm using this PC now"


Yes, it should work.
Yes, I've done this personally.

You have nothing to lose by trying.
I second this entirely
Same personal experiences
 

KarlKarrlander

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May 7, 2015
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The Upgrade from Win 7 to Win 10 did away with its original OEMness.
You do NOT use the original Win 7 license. That is null and void, after the upgrade to 10.

Verify the Win 10 is linked to a MS account with a digital license. It should be.
After the clean install on the new hardware, that is when you go through the activation troubleshooter, and tell it "I'm using this PC now"


Yes, it should work.
Yes, I've done this personally.

You have nothing to lose by trying.
Thank you for the clarification and information on this and how to perform a clean install of Windows.

I have linked my license to an MS account and the license is digitally activated so it seems to be in order. I have backed up all the files and programs I want to keep in a secondary hard drive and I have created an installation media file on a USB flash drive.

So I'm just waiting for the parts to arrive so I can attempt to build it and install the OS from the drive.
My plan is to install it on the new nvme m.2 ssd (500 GB) that I've ordered along with the new motherboard and CPU. I'll probably just use the other ssd unit as a backup for now :)

One question though...
Say this works and I can activate the Windows license through the media installation file & link to MS account, what happens to the license on the old ssd? Does it become null and void?
Just curious!
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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Thank you for the clarification and information on this and how to perform a clean install of Windows.

I have linked my license to an MS account and the license is digitally activated so it seems to be in order. I have backed up all the files and programs I want to keep in a secondary hard drive and I have created an installation media file on a USB flash drive.

So I'm just waiting for the parts to arrive so I can attempt to build it and install the OS from the drive.
My plan is to install it on the new nvme m.2 ssd (500 GB) that I've ordered along with the new motherboard and CPU. I'll probably just use the other ssd unit as a backup for now :)

One question though...
Say this works and I can activate the Windows license through the media installation file & link to MS account, what happens to the license on the old ssd? Does it become null and void?
Just curious!
An SSD does not hold the license. The system does,
An OS that may live on that SSD is just a semi-random collection of software.
Delete ALL of it, and then start a comprehensive backup plan. Don't try to keep that old OS around as a safeguard.
 
..
My plan is to install it on the new nvme m.2 ssd (500 GB) that I've ordered along with the new motherboard and CPU. I'll probably just use the other ssd unit as a backup for now :)

One question though...
Say this works and I can activate the Windows license through the media installation file & link to MS account
...
That's exactly what I've done and it works. I figured if it doesn't than I'll just go buy one of the cheap OEM keys and get rid of the annoying watermark.

But another thing that I've done is I called Microsoft Tech Support and told them my situation: that I was changing out the motherboard and hard drive along with it and it wouldn't validate. He helped me get it validated and I was on my way. So before buying a new key be sure to try that too.
 

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