New PC - will Windows 7 have to be reinstalled?

Hi, I'm about to fit more or less a new computer, with a new Case, CPU (and cooler), motherboard, PSU and I'm adding a second GPU. However I am keeping my hard drive, I was wondering if I would be required to install everything (such as my mouse and keyboard drivers and Windows 7) again or whether it would be on my hard drive still.

Any information you could give me would be great.

Thanks :)
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  1. The OS will stay on the HDD, however there's a chance it might not work with the new build. If the original OS came with your current PC, it might not work. OEM systems are tied with the motherboard they were originally installed on. If, however, you have a genuine MS version of the OS, it should work.

    Before you do move the HDD over, id recommend cleaning it of all drivers and anything that isn't totally necessary. This will avoid conflicts with the new build.
  2. Ah right, I do have an OEM system, does that mean that it won't be the genuine version? Also, would I have to uninstall the Windows 7 version I have in order to install a new version that I would have to purchase?
  3. You always re-install windows when swapping a motherboard. Period.

    Your oem version should work fine with your new mobo, but may require you to call MS automated activation number. It will tell you on the screen when to do this.

    You do not need to uninstall anything. When you re-install Windows it will give you the option to format the hardrive.
  4. No the windows is still genuine, there's just a fairly high chance it wont work with the new system due to the different components. One thing I will suggest though is TRY BEFORE YOU BUY. There's a chance the Windows already on the HDD will work with the new system so certainly give it a shot before buying another win7 licence.
  5. Alright thanks :) So all I'll need to do is just fit the parts and it should all work?
  6. Quote:
    Alright thanks :) So all I'll need to do is just fit the parts and it should all work?

    This would be my understanding. However GeekApproved mentioned you have to install a new OS with a new Motherboard. Which I know is the "ideal" way to do it, but I'm not sure its 100% necessary?
  7. Absolutely necessary.

    Like I said, make sure you format the hdd during install, then you may have to call MS's automated number for activation. The number will come up on the screen during install.
  8. Quick note for the OP:

    Formatting the HDD will wipe it of all data. Make sure if you require any documents or software ect ect that you safely back them up elsewhere before formatting. (external HDD or USB Flash recommended).

    Quick Guide here for how to keep your OS when switching motherboard, this maybe pre-windows XP, but I don't see why the same procedure wouldn't work with Win7?
  9. First a comment:
    .. On OEM versions of windows 7. It is tied to the system that it was installed on. It is non transferable with one exception - If the system's Motherboard dies you may re-install on on new MB. You may, or may not have to call uSoft when you try to activate. When you first power up on the New MB it will most likely note a significate change of Hardware and require re-activation. Re-activation may, or may not fail with a notice to call microsoft. Simply changing the working MB for a new MB is normally not allowed for a OEM version.

    .. Which ever method you use, FIRST create a image file of your C drive so that you have a point to come back to should you have problems. This is simple with windows 7. Just go to controll panel and select back up. This will create an image file of your "C" drive and offer to create a bootable restore DVD. Not, the image file can be placed on: (A) external HDD (Best option), (B) a set of DVD disk (usally 3 to 5), or A "Large" thumbdrive. ALSO as Adam pointed out backup all of the files/data that you have created and want to keep.
    End of comments.

    While AdrianPerry's method should/may work, I highly recommend using GeekApproved's method of a clean install as this will redo the registry preventing Potential problems with left over registry entrees that may cause problems (Simply deleting drivers does NOT always remove all entries). I normally use the "Custom" option and first delete all partitions, then repartition the drive using 100-> 200 Gigs for the operating system.

    Added: I normally do NOT insert the Key during the installation process and wait until after windows has completed it's updates, I've reloaded all the new drivers, and made sure the new installation is stable - Then I activate.
    In reference to creating a restore DVD, I normally do not - I use the "restore" funtion on a windows 7 installation disk ( Can Be ANY windows 7 installation disk, not just the one used to install the operating system.
  10. RetiredChief said:
    repartion the drive using 200->400 Gigs for the operating system.

    Why 200-400GB, that's a HUGE amount of space for the OS??
  11. OP, don't even attempt to install a new mobo and NOT re-install Windows. Your just asking for issues.
  12. @ AdrianPerry Your correct I've revised to 100->200 Gigs. With HDDs running 1-> 3 TBs I put it higher, not knowing just what a user was going to put in the "C" drive. Myself a 100 gig C drive is more than enough - I use 120/128 gig SSDs on all 5 of my machines with NO problem.
  13. Excuse me for jumping in on this thread, its related to my own situation and I think this is a better option than starting a fresh thread.

    I just had some components go bad in my PC, not sure if the MB is one of them but its older so I decided to start fresh.

    This will be the first time doing this with Win 7, I bought an OEM disk with my HDD upgrade last time around. Which I installed as a new setup vs an upgrade from XP

    If I format C: and go with a fresh install, will I have a problem getting Windows activated?
  14. So you have a new hdd and a new os.....why would you have a problem getting windows activated?
  15. I dont think he has a new OS, just an Install Disk that he used the first time around.
  16. Excuse me for not being clear with my last post.

    I di have a Windows 7 64 disk, however I used this disk to install on my previous system.

    With my new parts coming in I am concerned about what happens when I am doing a fresh install once I have everything put together.
  17. My first post clearly explained that you MAY have to call MS automated phone system to activate it on your new mobo. The number will come up on the screen and it takes about 2 minutes.
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