New motherboard, new OS?


I have a Dell xps 435mt and am upgrading the motherboard, most likely to something like this;

Originally installed was windows Vista but I bought an upgrade version of Windows 7 and did a clean install. Will this operating system work with a new motherboard or does it still carry some dell restrictions so that it will only work on a dell motherboard?

Also more generally does anyone know if HDD are easily swapable between motherboards and just by doing this doesnt require a clean install in itself

I remember when I did the clean install the disk carried a small partition of a few MB (or something similar). I assumed this was something like dell diagnostics or something so let it stay (dont know what it is for sure), will this need to be deleted for it to work?

thanks for any replies it is much appreciated
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  1. Are you sure your Dell can take a ATX mobo? Might be a mATX. If you change the mobo you must reinstall the OS and I don't think you can install that OS twice, on different boards.

    What's wrong with your current mobo?
  2. Windows 7 is pretty good at recognizing new hardware and installing drivers. I haven't tried replacing a motherboard, but I've replaced motherboards with XP systems, and if enough default drivers work to get into safe mode, you can then load the rest of the drivers. Sometimes you can't do it, but sometimes you can. It's worth a try.

    The other question, is can you reactivate your copy of Windows. Those who have replaced motherboards and then called the activation phone number report that usually you can. Just tell the person on the phone what you have done, and that Dell no longer supplies replacement motherboards for your system. The worst thing that can happen is that they won't re-activate your system, and if that happens you will be no worse off than if you didn't try.
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