Selling Old System - He Breaks After Sale - Wants Refund


Apr 23, 2009
Long story short, I bought an entire new system and wanted to sell my old system.

Old System:
Evga 780i Mobo
EVGA 8800 GTS vc
4 Gigs Corsair Ram
Antec 650W PSU
Q6600 Kentsfield
Antec Case

I had two hard drives fail me in 5 months and I decided to use that as an excuse to buy a whole new system. I pulled out my HD which was not being recognized by the bios, and threw in another HD. Bios saw my other HD, booted up and asked for an OS. Everything else is fine, had been working fine, and always worked fine.

A buddy of mine was looking for a cheap alternative for a quad core system. I told him he could have my setup for $350 bucks, without an HD. Pretty decent deal imo, especially since Q6600 retail at 189.99 right now.

In any case, I explained the situation, gave him all the stuff, let him know the little things ect.

So two days later, he calls me and tells me the motherboard is bad.

I ask why does he say that?

"Because the system is hanging"

"What hard drive did you put in?"

"The old one from my old system"

"Fresh Install?"

"No, I just threw it in"

In any case, I told him to reformat and reinstall windows and try again because the idea of installing a two year old hard drive into a completely new system with ENTIRELY different setups seems absurd, and that most likely, most of his issues he could trace to his registry and company being totally fubared with drivers and info it didn't need.

In any case, am I prick if I he wants to bring it back to me and I say no? I'm not trying to scam anyone, but he's putting me in an awkward position, especially when he is smart enough to get it running, but instead is pulling shenanigans.
I wouldn't take it back. If he isn't competent enough/is to lazy to do a fresh install then that's his own problem. I'm surprised at the number of people who think you can just pull a HD out of one computer and expect it to work just fine in a completely different machine.


Jun 27, 2008
As long as you told him everything about the system, he knew what he was buying. If it breaks after he bought it, its his problem.


Aug 13, 2007
If he is you friend tell him to bring it over with HDD installed and walk him through the fresh OS install. If the PC works like it should then the PC is his. No Warranty.
If the PC is messed up, broke etc. give him his money back.

If you dont value his friendship tell him Qué lástima.


Agreed, if you explained things throughly to him, and he wanted the computer anyway, that's his problem. It should only take him a little while to install the new HD and reinstall. Offer to help him backup his old stuff and reinstall, but as far as a refund, if he knew what he was getting, and the fact that he does not want to reinstall the OS is the only issue, then no. If he buys a system without a hard drive, it should be understood that there will be some work required.


I agree with knotknut. Install the OS for him if all is well then good. Maybe even update the bios for him, Nvidia used to be bad at corrupting drives, the latest bios cant ever hurt.


Mar 30, 2007
The system wasn't broken when you sold it and likely still isn't. It just needs a hard drive and OS. He has absolutely no reason to return it. However, as people have said, if he's really a friend (apparently a dumb one) you'll help him load the os on his drive and get it set up.
I think the best option is to offer to walk him through a reinstall. That way he can learn something and you can feel good about helping a buddy out, and he can feel like he didn't get ripped off. I agree with the assessment that a new drive and install with the latest drivers should solve his problems.

When I sell used computer parts, I make a point to mention upfront it is used and there is no warrantee. I am selling the parts as is. It saves alot of hassle, some people will walk away, but then those people aren't really interested in fixing it if something goes wrong.
But for a friend? Its hard to say "oh well, tough s#*+"
The only way to boot up from a Windows drive from another computer and have success is if the hardware matches. Most importantly is the core motherboard chipset.

Even if it looked like success (which there wasn't) I'd do a fresh install because issues from eventual crashing to degraded performance can occur. You also can't install an activated OEM Windows copy on a new system. A Full version has a limited number of transfers, an OEM copy does not.

Formatting and reinstalling Windows is the only solution regardless.

He may wish to consider downloading a copy of Windows 7 RC when it comes out on May 5th.

If you want quick proof, burn a LIVE copy of Ubuntu (or PCLinuxOS2009.1) and boot from the CD (may need to change the BIOS boot order. If you can boot into Linux, there's probably no major issues.

You just can't expect to swap a hard drive with Windows into a different PC without issues. Your friend is the problem, not you. If he didn't understand something, that's his problem but it does not appear you mislead him in any way.

Caveat Emptor!