Ask questions. Help others.
The HP Community is here for you.
Post new question
Note on archived topics.
This topic has been archived. Information and links in this thread may no longer be available or relevant.
If you have a question create a new topic by clicking here, or click on "Post new question" above and select the appropriate board.
Honor Student
Posts: 2
Member Since: ‎02-06-2013
Message 1 of 3 (2,914 Views)

reactivate windows 7 after changing motherboard

I had to change out bad motherboard on a hp pavilion which was two weeks out of warranty. It has windows 7 oem and I reinstalled the same board, I know that I will probably have to get a new key from microsoft. When I start computer it begins opening startup window gives a massage that new hardware was found and starts rebooting again. Hard drive has a lot of important information which I could not back up so I do not want to reinstall. How do I proceed from here. Thanks very much for any help

0 Kudos
Posts: 88,874
Member Since: ‎07-13-2010
Message 2 of 3 (2,904 Views)

Re: reactivate windows 7 after changing motherboard



I'm not a lawyer, but the below link from Microsoft seems to indicate that you can use the product key currently on the PC if you replaced the motherboard with a working version of the one that went bad.


Please see the link below and I have copied and pasted the answer.


Q. Can a PC with an OEM Windows operating system have its motherboard upgraded and keep the same license? What if it was replaced because it was defective?

A. Generally, an end user can upgrade or replace all of the hardware components on a computer—except the motherboard—and still retain the license for the original Microsoft OEM operating system software. If the motherboard is upgraded or replaced for reasons other than a defect, then a new computer has been created. Microsoft OEM operating system software cannot be transferred to the new computer, and the license of new operating system software is required. If the motherboard is replaced because it is defective, you do not need to acquire a new operating system license for the PC as long as the replacement motherboard is the same make/model or the same manufacturer's replacement/equivalent, as defined by the manufacturer's warranty.


The reason for this licensing rule primarily relates to the End User Software License Terms and the support of the software covered by those terms. The End User Software License Terms are a set of usage rights granted to the end user by the PC manufacturer, and relate only to rights for that software as installed on that particular PC. The system builder is required to support the software on the original PC. Understanding that end users, over time, upgrade their PCs with different components, Microsoft needed to have one base component "left standing" that would still define the original PC. Since the motherboard contains the CPU and is the "heart and soul" of the PC, when the motherboard is replaced (for reasons other than defect) a new PC is essentially created. The original system builder did not manufacture this new PC, and therefore cannot be expected to support it.


As for trying to get the hard drive to work (which I don't understand if it is the same motherboard why it just didn't boot up), you can try making a W7 installation DVD and use the repair option to see if you can get the OS to work again.


If not, then you will have to reinstall the operating system.


If you don't delete the partition or format the hard drive, after W7 installs, you can go into the Windows.old folder that was created and move your stuff to the working OS, then use the disk cleanup utility to delete the Windows.old folder.


Just click on the Cleanup System Files button on the lower left of the window.


Here is the info you need to make your own W7 installation media.


If you can read the 25 character Microsoft windows 7 product key, you can download plain Windows 7 ISO files to burn to a DVD for the version of windows that came installed on your PC, and that is listed on the Microsoft COA sticker on your PC's case.


Burn the ISO using the Burn ISO option on your DVD burning program and burn at the slowest possible speed your program will allow. This will create a bootable DVD.


Or use the Windows 7 USB/DVD installation tool to compile the ISO file you download from Digital River. Link and instructions below. You need a 4 GB flash drive to use the USB method of compilation.


Use the 25 character product key on the PC to activate the installation.


The key will activate either a 32 or 64 bit installation.


Then go to the PC's support and driver page to install the drivers you need.


Link to the W7 ISO file downloads is below.



PhD Student
Posts: 1,033
Member Since: ‎11-26-2008
Message 3 of 3 (2,883 Views)

Re: reactivate windows 7 after changing motherboard

[ Edited ]

thats the thing most people will think it will be usuable but the draw back the windows activation keys seems to be geared to the motherboard like your cpu or bios


but like he said the iso created w7 and do repair but if you do get w7 to run but it maybe give you a few days and dont try to activate yet


do your back up first and get what ever your product keys for your added software


hopefully you can get your os to run it and there is a miscrosoft forum


this might provide answers to your replaced hard ware


i do not know if this is possible

can taking the old cpu off the orginal motherboard and placing it on the replaced one ??

i am wondering because i saw that upgrading the cpu have some few options of few different type of CPUs

mainly speed or ghz criteria


Please provide Kudos to whom has provided answers or
good points or advice..
Aslo if the questions or issues solved please check it
Thanks and you are welcome _____ Rick
† The opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the authors, not of HP. By using this site, you accept the Terms of Use and Rules of Participation