Motherboard change due to failure RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have a Dell computer that has a faulty motherboard and is out of warranty.  I have two options, buy one from Dell for $200 or buy one from Fry's for $50.  I thought it was a simple decision until I read about the oem license being tied to the motherboard.  Must I buy the replacement mb from Dell (at whatever price they choose to ask) in order to be allowed to continue to use my oem XP Professional (and MS Office) license, or, since it has failed, am I allowed to replace it with something else since it is not under warranty.


    Friday, March 13, 2009 12:34 AM


  • Doug E70,

    The replacement motherboard from Dell should work 100% correctly.

    The one from Fry's, IF it has an identical chipset and video subsystem as the one being replaced, might very well install and run Windows without Window's Product Activation system requiring reactivation.  Depending upon how many small differences there are between the old and the new, you might have to reactivate.

    If there are any big differences, you might have to do a repair reinstallation of Windows, and that's when not having the Dell mobo with the Dell SLP BIOS bits is going to sting.  The Dell OS Reinstallation CD won't install on a system whose motherboard does not have the right bits in the BIOS.

    Plan B which I have used, is to do the repair reinstallation (or clean installation) with a systembuilder/OEM CD (MS now calls these "small manufacturer" CoAs) for the editon of Windows on the Certificate of Authenticity, while using the Product Key on the CoA of the Dell computer and NOT the PK that was on the CoA that accompanied the CD.  After installation, do not do an automatic online activation--instead, do a telephonic activation.   If the automated telphonic system rejects your attempt, choose the option to speak with an activation rep.  Tell the rep that you are reinstalling Windows on your Dell, but the Dell CDs wouldn't work because the motherboard was defective and you had to replace it with a non-Dell motherboard.

    BTW, you should be able to source the specific genuine Dell motherboard as a "good warranted pull" way cheaper for your computer by checking eBay and Googling.
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    • Marked as answer by Stephen Holm Friday, March 13, 2009 5:51 PM
    Friday, March 13, 2009 4:11 AM