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win 10 migration to other pc

Hi guys

I have a friend who still runs win 7 and want to upgrade to win 10

I have an hdd that i salvaged from an office pc, that has a win 10 on it

However my friend has an 256gb ssd that he wants to use as a boot disk

I heard that win 10 doesn't like it when it gets installed in a different sytem (mobo)

do you guys think this will work? Does anyone have experience with this kind of swap?
17 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about win migration
  1. No OS "likes" to be moved to different hardware. Drivers, and configuration info for the correctly installed hardware are saved. The new hardware doesn't match this config. If you are lucky it might boot. But you are violating the licensing terms for that Windows license in addition to chasing ghost symptoms. If he wants Windows 10 he can buy Windows 10 and do a clean install.
  2. It's extremely unlikely it'll even boot. If it does boot, it'll most likely still lack a bunch of core drivers and stuff making it extremely unstable and whatnot.
  3. so it might work :p?
  4. Quanticriver said:
    Hi guys

    I have a friend who still runs win 7 and want to upgrade to win 10

    I have an hdd that i salvaged from an office pc, that has a win 10 on it

    However my friend has an 256gb ssd that he wants to use as a boot disk

    I heard that win 10 doesn't like it when it gets installed in a different sytem (mobo)

    do you guys think this will work? Does anyone have experience with this kind of swap?


    Changing systems and changing the OS.
    Too many moving parts at the same time.

    The office PC with Win 10 is likely not a transferable OS license. Tied to that original PC. Or maybe even licensed via the company license server.

    You need to determine the actual licensing of the Win 10 from the Office system.


    And then the actual operation comes into play.
    Would that drive actually boot up in your friends system?
    That is a 100% maybe.
  5. therealduckofdeath said:
    It's extremely unlikely it'll even boot. If it does boot, it'll most likely still lack a bunch of core drivers and stuff making it extremely unstable and whatnot.


    Maybe i should also have said that we plan on doing a fresh install rather then a clone

    So we would grab the win 10 key from the hdd, and use it to do a fresh install on the ssd (using the fromatted hdd as a secondary data drive)
  6. What your friend CAN do is simply upgrade his current system to Win 10, and leave it unactivated.
    Disregard the office HDD completely.

    Leave the Win 10 unactivated, and accept the small restrictions.
    Later, when he feels like actually paying for it, purchase a valid license for that already installed Win 10. Apply the license key and proceed on.
  7. USAFRet said:
    Quanticriver said:
    Hi guys

    I have a friend who still runs win 7 and want to upgrade to win 10

    I have an hdd that i salvaged from an office pc, that has a win 10 on it

    However my friend has an 256gb ssd that he wants to use as a boot disk

    I heard that win 10 doesn't like it when it gets installed in a different sytem (mobo)

    do you guys think this will work? Does anyone have experience with this kind of swap?


    Changing systems and changing the OS.
    Too many moving parts at the same time.

    The office PC with Win 10 is likely not a transferable OS license. Tied to that original PC. Or maybe even licensed via the company license server.

    You need to determine the actual licensing of the Win 10 from the Office system.


    And then the actual operation comes into play.
    Would that drive actually boot up in your friends system?
    That is a 100% maybe.


    The office pc has been used by a family member at home for a couple of years, so it is not tied to a company licensing server
  8. Quanticriver said:


    The office pc has been used by a family member at home for a couple of years, so it is not tied to a company licensing server


    Do you know the version of Win 10 (Home, Pro, whatever), and the relevant license key?
    How did that office system acquire the Win 10 license?
  9. USAFRet said:
    Quanticriver said:


    The office pc has been used by a family member at home for a couple of years, so it is not tied to a company licensing server


    Do you know the version of Win 10 (Home, Pro, whatever), and the relevant license key?
    How did that office system acquire the Win 10 license?


    I am quite sure it is win 10 pro
    i would extract the key by plugging the hdd into a working pc, booting from it and running ProduKey

    I am also fairy confident that the licence is a standalone one
  10. Quanticriver said:


    I am quite sure it is win 10 pro
    i would extract the key by plugging the hdd into a working pc, booting from it and running ProduKey

    I am also fairy confident that the licence is a standalone one


    "i would extract the key by plugging the hdd into a working pc,"

    This may or may not work.
    ProduKey will extract the license of the running OS, not necessarily the license from a secondary drive.

    But, do try it. I'm interested to know if it works.
  11. USAFRet said:
    Quanticriver said:


    I am quite sure it is win 10 pro
    i would extract the key by plugging the hdd into a working pc, booting from it and running ProduKey

    I am also fairy confident that the licence is a standalone one


    "i would extract the key by plugging the hdd into a working pc,"

    This may or may not work.
    ProduKey will extract the license of the running OS, not necessarily the license from a secondary drive.

    But, do try it. I'm interested to know if it works.


    I'll make sure to use it as the only connected hard drive then
    I'll keep you posted
    Might be a couple of weeks though

    Thanks for the follow up so far
  12. Quanticriver said:


    I'll make sure to use it as the only connected hard drive then


    And then you run into the issue of...will that drive boot in a whole different PC?
    Maybe, maybe not.
  13. If connected to the original PC you could run sysprep to avoid several potential issues when moving the drive to another PC.
  14. GhislainG said:
    If connected to the original PC you could run sysprep to avoid several potential issues when moving the drive to another PC.


    Unfortunately, that is no longer possible as the mobo of the original pc is dead
  15. Update:

    I have connected the "office" hdd to my main rig and physically disconnected all other harddrives
    It booted successfully
    I then used produkey to aquire the win 10 key

    However the win 10 key thus produced is the same win 10 key as my main rig
    So windows looks to your hardware, i think mobo specifically and produces a key based on that rather then from the hhd
    (this is new to me)

    so i think that without the original pc where i got the hdd from it will not be possible to get the unique win 10 key

    But i also looked into the win 10 license terms and found the following;

    Independent software. If you have acquired the software as a stand-alone software (and also if you have upgraded software acquired as a stand-alone software), you may transfer the software to another device that belongs to you. You may also transfer the software to a device owned by someone else if (i) you are the first licensed user of the software and (ii) the new user agrees to the terms of this agreement. For the transfer of the software you may use the media on which the software is delivered or the backup copy that you may make with our permission. Every time you transfer the software to a new device, you must remove the software from the original device. You may not transfer the software to share licenses on multiple devices.

    So what i derive from this is that the process is legal and supported by windows

    My next step would be to take this one up with windows support and see if i can get anything done from them
    What do you guys think?
  16. Give it a try; worst that can happen is Microsoft refuses to provide a new key.
  17. Best answer
    Update part II

    I have contacted microsoft support about this issue and the plot thickens :)

    Basically my issue is that the pc came prepackaged with win 7 which was later upgraded to win10
    Support asked for my key, but the only one i could provide was the win 7 key that is stickered to the side of the pc

    So i can confirm that the win 10 key is always based on your mobo
    (this was confirmed by winsupport)

    But here is the weird part;
    They stated that i could use the win 7 key to install win 7 and that i MIGHT be able to upgrade to win 10
    They also said that it would no longer be free

    But they remained vague on wether it was possible to upgrade from win7 to 10
    (maybe based on hardware, don't know, forgot to ask :p)

    I did ask wether he would be able to provide me with a key if the pc came shipped with win 10
    (instead of win7)
    And the answer is;
    If you have a Windows 10 preinstalled on your system, it came embedded in the motherboard we can easily fetch the key through WMIC command.
    If you do not have the key also your OEM will help you in retrieving the product key of Windows 10.


    CONCLUSION
    So i guess a lesson to learn here is that it is best to extract your key from your pc for future use, before your hardware gives out

    Also i learned that it is indeed possible and legal to thusly transfer your win 10 license, provided you have your key

    (For those interested i can provide the whole chat transcript)

    weirdly enough as a last note the guy seemed to urge me to try it nonetheless
    as if there is some loophole where you can still do the process for free (?) anyone familiar with such a thing?

    this is what i found on the subject
    https://www.howtogeek.com/272201/all-the-ways-you-can-still-get-windows-10-for-free/

    phew, what a journey
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