Hm, that's a promise. Far too often they are not kept. Let's see how they handle it in reality. Since I'm still on AMD's FX platform I guess I will have to change that in the not so distant future. Actually the only thing that's keeping me from doing so is that I'm holding on to see if AMD comes up with a successor of the Bulldozer CPUs or not. If not I will probably switch to Intel sooner or later. That is going to be the moment to discover if MS keeps up to it's promise.
HDD, RAM, VGA and even CPU is OK. Motherboard is where it ends.
Moving from AMD to intel will require to change MB so MS doesn't have to cover you for that.
If you have retail (OEM doesn't allow MB change anyway) version of earlier windows then you have to do it within 1 year free upgrade period. And you still have to install (remove win 10 that uses that win for upgrade before) retail win 7/8 and then use free upgrade again.
The correct answer from Microsoft should have been...
"Dear sir, we get asked this question a lot so let me put your mind at ease:
You shouldn't encounter any difficulties upgrading your computer's hardware and keeping your activation of Windows 10 intact.
In the unlikely event that you do have a problem then Customer Support will re-activate your OS.
However, if you replace your motherboard then you will run into difficulties.
Again, this can be fixed by contacting Customer Support."
Then again, Microsoft isn't famous for it's customer satisfaction!
Nobody can know for sure now. We'll see when I eventually have to change my mainboard
Last edited by altae; 12 Aug 2015 at 11:13.
I recently upgraded (2 days ago) a 5 year old Dell Inspiron 580 desktop with a new CPU (from an Intel G6950 Pentium to an Intel I5 750) added a GPU card (NVIDIA GeForce 8400 GS) to replace the built in mother board GPU and changed the hard disks from a 320GB to a 500GB. Also added a PCIe Wifi card to replace the existing USB Wifi. Then did a clean reinstall with Windows 7 immediately prior to the Windows 10 upgrade. No problem with maintaining the Windows activation all the way through.
So short of actually changing the motherboard, it appears other hardware changes don't affect existing Windows activation.
I am pretty sure you catch more flies with honey than vinegar so if you talk nicely to the Microsoft support technician they will help you and solve your issue. If you go on blowing hot and cold and give them grief you'll get the "You need to buy a key answer". I have never had a problem getting Microsoft software Windows, Office etc reactivated even after a motherboard swap with OEM Windows XP. The motherboard had failed everything else was the same but take my word I was nice on the phone and got it reactivated.
I had to do this today and I did not change anything.
News flash folks they have always done this even since the XP days. I have never had an activation issue to be unresolved. They will sooner give it away for free than to let you steal Windows.