1.    02 Sep 2015 #1
    Join Date : Oct 2014
    Posts : 554
    ,7,8.1 10TP 10upgrade,MINT

    Hardware changes and activation


    In my experience over many years of monkeying about with pc hardware, I have never had problems activating genuine copies of Windows. Changing cpu's, hdd's ram and graphics cards have never bothered Microsoft. Back in the XP days, I also changed motherboards with OEM software successfully. As far as I can tell, only changing the motherboard would cause problems with modern operating systems. I have changed hdd's for ssd's and vice versa and graphics cards with no problems on W10 upgrades. Today, I received a cpu from Ebay and fitted it into the pc which runs 8.1 and W10 upgrade from W7hp. BIOS recognised it at once, but both copies of Windows required a restart, system and device manager failed to recognise the cpu first time. Activation was not affected in either copy of Windows.
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  2.    02 Sep 2015 #2

    I hope you are right. I plan on getting a new SSD drive and would prefer to install a clean copy but I won't. I had a terrible experience with MS on activation of a clean install on my existing system AFTER I upgraded to Win 10, 25 days earlier.

    Tech support offered NO help, just said sorry you'll have to reinstall Win 8.1 and start over. I've read other cases where tech support gave a product key to resolve the issue. Why can't they be consistent in the handling of these cases.
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  3.    02 Sep 2015 #3
    Join Date : Aug 2015
    Posts : 66
    Windows 10

    I have built a few systems and the only issue I have had with activation is when I changed the motherboard on an older system, I think there used to be a limit to the amount of other hardware change too. If your bios recognises the new CPU you 'should' be good to go. Personally, I would never buy hardware off Ebay as it could be dodgy or fake.

    In the past I have had to call MS to explain the reason for the hardware ( MB is usually bricked by Bios update ) change and they have given me a new key - while things are different with Win10, it's worth a shot. Nothing to lose

    EDIT: the post above was posted while I was replying.
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  4.    03 Sep 2015 #4
    Join Date : Aug 2015
    Posts : 7
    Win10, Linux Mint

    Quote Originally Posted by gzt7d8 View Post
    I hope you are right. I plan on getting a new SSD drive and would prefer to install a clean copy but I won't. I had a terrible experience with MS on activation of a clean install on my existing system AFTER I upgraded to Win 10, 25 days earlier.

    Tech support offered NO help, just said sorry you'll have to reinstall Win 8.1 and start over. I've read other cases where tech support gave a product key to resolve the issue. Why can't they be consistent in the handling of these cases.
    I feel your pain. I upgraded the Wife's PC from 7 to 10, created restore media and replaced the HD with an SSD. Unfortunately the restore media would not work, probably because the replacement drive was smaller (even though I had shrunk the old partitions to less than 1/4 the size of the new SSD.) I installed Win10 from DVD image downloaded from MS and it refused to activate. MS support told me that I had to install 7 first. That's an awful policy IMO. I tried to download 7 install media from MS but could not because I have an OE license key. I tried to find a way to get install media from Lenovo but can see no way to do that. (Based on the support options I found on their web site I may never buy another Lenovo product.)

    I wound up installing Linux Mint and that is what SWMBO is now using. It's ironic. Due to the insider program I have W10 pro on two PCs (1 HD install and three VMs) and the one that would be most useful cannot be gotten to work. (I'm a dyed in the wool Penguinista. ) Overall I put about two days of screwing around with that getting the upgrade going and trying to activate. It took 20 minutes to install Linux.
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  5.    03 Sep 2015 #5
    Join Date : Oct 2014
    Posts : 554
    ,7,8.1 10TP 10upgrade,MINT
    Thread Starter

    I have three pc's with updated W10, so far I havn't needed to clean install any of them. I don't think there would be any problem even with a new hdd. Cloning the hdd, say for a bigger one, or fitting an ssd is also ok.
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  6.    03 Sep 2015 #6
    Join Date : Aug 2015
    Posts : 6
    windows 10 pro

    Quote Originally Posted by HankB View Post
    I feel your pain. I upgraded the Wife's PC from 7 to 10, created restore media and replaced the HD with an SSD. Unfortunately the restore media would not work, probably because the replacement drive was smaller (even though I had shrunk the old partitions to less than 1/4 the size of the new SSD.) I installed Win10 from DVD image downloaded from MS and it refused to activate. MS support told me that I had to install 7 first. That's an awful policy IMO. I tried to download 7 install media from MS but could not because I have an OE license key. I tried to find a way to get install media from Lenovo but can see no way to do that. (Based on the support options I found on their web site I may never buy another Lenovo product.)

    I wound up installing Linux Mint and that is what SWMBO is now using. It's ironic. Due to the insider program I have W10 pro on two PCs (1 HD install and three VMs) and the one that would be most useful cannot be gotten to work. (I'm a dyed in the wool Penguinista. ) Overall I put about two days of screwing around with that getting the upgrade going and trying to activate. It took 20 minutes to install Linux.
    In your case i would just download any available windows 7 install media and remove that ei.cfg file from the iso.
    It doesn't matter if it's from piratebay or some other place like that as you just need it to activate with your key.

    After it is activated you just upgrade to windows 10 and it is activated, wait a few days to make sure that your hwid is in Microsoft's servers then you can wipe your hdd or ssd if you want.
    Then you sought have fully legit and working windows 10 on your ssd.

    Main thing that you need is to have windows 7 to windows 10 to make that hwid for that computer, after that you don't need to install windows 7 even if you need to make clean install for your windows 10 pc.
    Quote Originally Posted by HankB View Post
    I feel your pain. I upgraded the Wife's PC from 7 to 10, created restore media and replaced the HD with an SSD. Unfortunately the restore media would not work, probably because the replacement drive was smaller (even though I had shrunk the old partitions to less than 1/4 the size of the new SSD.) I installed Win10 from DVD image downloaded from MS and it refused to activate. MS support told me that I had to install 7 first. That's an awful policy IMO. I tried to download 7 install media from MS but could not because I have an OE license key. I tried to find a way to get install media from Lenovo but can see no way to do that. (Based on the support options I found on their web site I may never buy another Lenovo product.)

    I wound up installing Linux Mint and that is what SWMBO is now using. It's ironic. Due to the insider program I have W10 pro on two PCs (1 HD install and three VMs) and the one that would be most useful cannot be gotten to work. (I'm a dyed in the wool Penguinista. ) Overall I put about two days of screwing around with that getting the upgrade going and trying to activate. It took 20 minutes to install Linux.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  7.    04 Sep 2015 #7
    Join Date : Oct 2014
    Posts : 554
    ,7,8.1 10TP 10upgrade,MINT
    Thread Starter

    I find Mini Tool Partition Wizard works well moving things from one hdd to another.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 


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