[SOLVED] What do I need to do before upgrading my motherboard?

May 18, 2019
I'm sure you guys get this question a lot so bear with me:
I'm upgrading my Gigabyte H100M-S2H to a Aorus B450 M and I'm upgrading my i5 6400 to a R5 2600.

What do I need to do before performing the hardware swap? I mean, driver-wise, also how can I do a fresh install of Windows with an OEM product key?

Also, will I have Ethernet connectivity without motherboard drivers? If not, does that mean I should dump the setup files for the driver to a flash drive before swapping motherboard?

Do I need Windows 10 on a flash drive to do a fresh install?


Nov 5, 2013
Windows 10 usually has a compatible network card driver ready for you when you install W10. You can download the driver from Aorus B450M support page beforehand just in case, dump it to a flashdrive.

Do you really need a clean install? I would just swap hardware keeping my Windows installation. You will be able to reactivate Windows because Windows will think you got a new PC. Make sure you have the OEM Windows key backed up just in case.

You can link your Microsoft account (MSA) with the Windows 10 digital license on your device. The new feature allows you to access the Activation Troubleshooter quickly to re-activate your free upgrade copy of Windows 10.
In this Windows 10 guide, we'll guide you through the process to link together your Microsoft Account and digital license, and the steps to use the Activation Troubleshooter to re-activate the operating system.
How to link your Microsoft account with the digital license
  1. Use the Windows key + I keyboard shortcut to open the Settings app.
  2. Click Update & security.
  3. Click Activation.
  4. Click Add an account. (Your account must have administrator privileges to go through this process.)
  5. Enter your Microsoft account credentials, and click Sign-in. If the local account isn't connected to a Microsoft account, you'll also need to enter the password for the local account.
Once you completed the process, you will see the "Windows is activated with a digital license linked to your Microsoft account" message in the Activation page, indicating that the linked was successfully processed.

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