Need to install vista on new hd... plz hlp!

#1
Hello I've been searching trying to find out what i need to do. My HTPC is on it's last leg, it's about 6 years old I've been getting error messages saying the system shut down unexpectedly then in the windows report it says it is the blue screen of death error, so I'm thinking the hard drive is about to bite the dust, (which is fine as i've been wanting to upgrade!) so I've gone to newegg and ordered all my new parts hd, mobo, graphics card, etc. the question is how do i get my windows vista onto new HD do i transfer it off of old HD or can i just use my installation disk? I've contacted the windows 800 number and they said as long as I transfered it from old HD to new, and it was only being used on one, I was fine.. plz help i do not want to build the computer and not be able to load disk and i do not want to have to buy a new copy of vista considering i only have had it a year and a half and payed 200 bucks for it. Any help would be greatly appreciated! thanks
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#2
Hi Matt, welcome to NST.
When you run Control Panel / System and scroll down to the activation key, does it say
xxxxx-OEM-xxxxxxx-xxxxx
If so, the copy of Vista is licensed to your old hardware, not to you.
If you clone it to your new HDD and install it to a new mobo, it won't activate.

If the key is not OEM, you're fine to install a brand-new clean copy of Vista onto your nice new hardware, using your installation DVD.
You have 30 days grace to activate the key but when you do, the MS data-base will notice the change of mobo, HDD etc and it will fail automatic validation.
That's when you phone the MS freephone number which will be specified with the failure notifiation.
Tell them you've moved the OS to new hardware and they'll give you a code to enter which will activate Vista on your new machine.
Simultaneously, the old machine's copy will become de-activated, and should you continue to use it, in contravention of the EULA, the first time it uses Windows Update it will be recognized as a "pirate" copy.

Control Panel / System / Performance / Advanced / Health Report will give you an idea of any hardware problems. The disk report will show you if SMART is predicting a HDD failure.
Chances are that all your BSODs etc are down to a tired Vista installation, and that a re-install would probably clean up everything on the old hardware too.
If the HDD checks out as OK, (you can download a thorough free checkout utility from the manufacturers site usually) don't throw it away; install it as a second HDD in your new PC and you can use it to backup your data on the new HDD, or as a testbed for dual-booting W7 or Linux with your new Vista.
Come back and read around the wiki for advice. We're always around to help anyone on the multi-booting path.
 
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