Will a prebuilt hdd work w/ a new os+mobo?

A few years ago I purchased a prebuilt pc from Bestbuy. At some point the hard drive failed and HP sent me a new one (500 gb Barracuda 7200.12) and I put that into my pc. Fast forward to now and I have replaced everything from that pc including the case except for the motherboard, ram, and the replacement hdd. I am now looking to upgrade my motherboard (and unfortunately need new ram, cpu, and a os too so it will be quite expensive)

Looking to save a few bucks - would I be able to use that Barracuda harddrive with a new mobo+os? I was wondering if I could reformat it or something or just straight up put it into a new mobo+os as is.
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  1. Yes, you can use the drive, but it's always best to reformat and reinstall the OS when changing the motherboard.
  2. I have to buy a new operating system if I change the motherboard right? Isn't the prebuilt os locked to the motherboard it came with? the tattoo or whatever it is.
  3. Well, since it's prebuilt, it didn't come with an actual OS disc, and it's an OEM version of Windows which means the key is tied to that motherboard. Also, whenever you are doing such a major hardware change, such as the motherboard, it's way easier to reinstall the OS.
  4. I am a bit confused about your answer. How would I reinstall the os without the disc? I do have a supplement recovery cd as well as the vista cd key for my current mobo. Would I be able to set up a new mobo/cpu with my current hard drive and pop in the supplement recovery cd and install vista on it that way? Or do I have to buy an entirely new operating system for that?
  5. You would have to buy a new OS disc. The recovery CD will only work with the HP motherboard.
  6. ok so I have a new mobo/cpu/os arriving friday. I have done some research and wanted to check with you guys. So with the new stuff and the hard drive from the pc I am on now (already have important files xferred to portable drive) - after I get everything set up I connect the hard drive and boot w/ the new os disc and just choose to use my current hard drive for the installation and it will automatically write over the existing stuff?
  7. You will have the option to delete the old partition and create a new one. Creating a new partition will wipe the old data. Pay attention to the prompts and you will see the one asking about where to install Windows.
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