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Replacement Motherboard--Do I need to reinstall OS?

Last response: in Windows 7
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June 5, 2012 12:24:29 PM

I RMA'd the motherboard of a new system I am building because one of its' two banks of DIMM slots was defective.

Is it necessary for me to re-install of the OS once I have the same replacement motherboard installed? If it is necessary for me to re-install, am I going to have issues with my licensed copy of Windows 7, since in theory it is being installed on another system?

BTW, the OS installed fine and the system appears to be stable running off 16GB of memory. Nevertheless, I returned the mobo because I couldn't get my system it to recognize the other 16GB of memory installed. I am a PC convert after having spent the last 15 years working with Macs so my knowledge of PC OSs is not terribly sophisticated. This is my second PC build (the first being a hybrid with a mac OS).


Delvin P. Blanders

CPU INTEL|CORE I7 3930K 3.2G 12MB
MB ASUS|P9X79 WS X79 LGA2011
VGA GIGABYTE|GV-N570OC-13I REV2.0
HDD 2T|ST ST2000DM001 7.2K 64M
4Gx4|CORSAIR CMZ16GX3M4X1600C9
MS WIN 7 PRO SP1 64-BIT 1PK - OEM
SSD 128G|CRUCIAL CT128M4SSD1
SSD 256G|CRUCIAL CT256M4SSD1
a b V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
June 5, 2012 1:28:22 PM

The short answer is no. But you may have re-activate it. You also suffer some performance loss.

There was a time when a new motherboard did mean a new installation because the Operating System couldn't handle the change in hard drive controller. These days the Operating System has so many hard drive controllers built into its HAL (Hardware Abstraction Layer) it could potentially survive a nuclear strike. It also helps that the vast majority of motherboards are using the same AHCI interface these days.
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June 5, 2012 1:59:30 PM

Thanks Pauls3743.

So if I understand correctly, you are saying that if I DON'T re-install the OS, my machine WILL suffer some performance loss. However, if I DO re-install the OS, with this obviate a performance loss? I guess I wanted to avoid a re-installation only because I didn't want to have to deal with the hassles of having to re-activate it (microsoft will see it as a second computer, which is outside the scope of the license agreement and probably won't activate it). However, if it is going to see a performance hit, I'd rather deal with the hassle. I'm building a video editing workstation and I need all the muscle I can get.

Additional comments and suggestions are encouraged. Thanks in advance.

Delvin

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June 5, 2012 2:25:34 PM

If it is the exact same board you should be perfectly fine. I am anxiously awaiting his explanation on why your machine will be slower though.

He is correct is saying you may have to reactivate it and it may require a call to MS to do so which once you explain to them your situation you will be fine. I personally have never had to haggle with them and have had to call them probably 20 times for reactivation over the years.

Beyond that, everything should be the same so all the drivers should already be there. It may go through a short period of finding devices, but it shouldnt be anything big.
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June 15, 2012 4:52:07 PM

So received and installed the replacement mobo and everything is up and running smoothly (knock on wood). Fortunately, I did NOT have to reactivate the OS. I suspect this is due to having replaced it with the exact same board.
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June 15, 2012 4:52:43 PM

Best answer selected by DelvinPBlanders.
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