Swapped HDD's cause other one died. RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hey there, So my g/f's parents PC died, so when I went to take their hard drive and put it into my old computer it lets me boot up normally. It goes to the selection screen of the 3 safe mode options, last known config, and start normally, when I do ANY of them the computer restarts.

    Next problem I could have is, When I took my old HDD and put it into a different PC, it deactivated windows on me, I was just simply going to wipe the HDD and let them have that computer and HDD since theirs died on them.

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

    Wednesday, November 10, 2010 4:31 PM


  • Hello Absolutpower5,

    Moving an installation of Windows XP from one computer to another (by moving the HDD you are moving the installation) has both technical and licensing ramifications.

    The technical issues can usually be overcome with a repair reinstallation.

    The licensing issues cannot be overcome if the installation being moved is an OEM license--the End User Licesning Agreement (EULA) for OEM licenses does not permit moving the license from the original computer to any other computer, including if the original computer dies.  If the original computer dies, so does the license.

    If you give away the original computer with the original license, you are allowed to wipe the hard disk and do a clean installation of XP, presumably with the OEM installation disc or with the manufacturer supplied recovery solution.  Is your old computer (the one that you were thinking of giving them) a name-brand computer or white box / "clone" / self-built computer?

    If the license is a full retail license (was purchased in a pretty retail box at the store and came with a hologrammed installation disc and the product key is printed on a yellow-orange Proof Of License Sticker affixed to the inside disc holder folder), then the EULA does permit you to move the licence from one computer to another.

    • Proposed as answer by Darin Smith MS Thursday, November 11, 2010 8:04 PM
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Friday, November 12, 2010 10:39 PM
    Wednesday, November 10, 2010 4:41 PM