I guess that confusion has been created by MS fomulating licence agreements that the majority of ordinary folks have no chance of understanding! I realise that they want to maximise their profit and stop illegal activity etc. Why not just create a single installation disk which replaces OEM and Retail and is priced somewhere in the middle?
i'm pretty sure that MS activation uses the serials of multiple components (HDD, processor, ram , M/B etc) and if too many change, it sets the alarm off.
A M/B change shouldn't affect the activation status of the machine
Can say for certain that it does affect activation status if the board is very different and comes with new CPU.
Replaced the board in my old desktop, formerly a server, P4 HT, with a truly stunning Core2Quad and board and the activation whatsit threw a hissy-fit and DEMANDED that I re-establish my link to the collective (THEY ARE BORG, RESISTANCE IS FUTILE).
However, activation and licensing are not the same - you need to re-activate XP when your hardware changes a lot, but it's not counted as a different machine, simply the same one that needs re-activating.
I'm fairly sure that after about 2-3 activations, they'll grill you on the phone to find out how many machines it's on, whether you bought it in a shop, all kinds really to try and catch out bad backstreet computer shops selling the same OEM license over and over.
sounds like Theseus's paradox to me!
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