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Can I put Laptop HDD in a custom build and use same OS? Answered

I have a 2.5 sata harddrive with an OS from an HP laptop. Can I plug this drive into a new custom build so that I don't have to buy a new hard drive and OS


You can certainly use the HDD however you want but the copy of windows that came with the laptop you pulled the drive from is non-transferable. MS will be unwilling to help make it a lagit copy of windows for your new system so you'll have to buy a new copy of windows.

I bought a win7 home premium and was allowed to put it on 2 other machines. Putting the hdd in a custom build may require a call to
ms and they will enable the os from their end.

Good Luck

Admittedly my "allowed installs" info dates to around windows 2000 or earlier (been a mostly BSD and Linux user since mid-90s). Glad to hear it seems a little outdated in a positive way :-)

It would not surprise me if it depends on the type of windows version (OEM, Home Basic, Home Premium... or what they call them these days) But perhaps I should stop making a fool of myself making guesses at this :-)

Im a Linux user as well, these day's win 7 is only on my machine so I can play games, in the future Steam will offer AAA games for Linux and It will good bye to MS for good


5 years ago

If it have a standard sata connector (often internal laptop drives have custom connectors in my experience) then it should be technically possible.

(Note that I am not a lawyer, and I am north-european - laws are different all over):

Assuming you have Microsoft Windows on the disk, it is likely an OEM (original equimpment manufacturer) version. Which means legally you may not be allowed to make that switch (it is bound to the laptop). Though I am not sure I have ever heard of anyone being in legal trouble over it (except companies). It is technically possible, with the caveat that drivers for the new computer may be missing.

I hope that is of some help...

Sorry to reply to myself but...

If you bought the version of windows yourself seperately (that is, it is not an OEM) then i believe you are free to use it on whichever machine you want (though only on 1 at a time unless you paid for more licenses)