I'm thinking about upgrading my motherboard down the line and I hear you have to reinstall Windows 7 which wipes your memory when you do. Any way to circumvent this? My current Windows 7 is non-OEM if that helps anything.
You don't [I]have[/I] to but it's recommended to start fresh, though you can sometimes get lucky and it'll work fine without reinstalling, I swapped my old HDD into an entirely new PC and after like 10 minutes of installing updates on a black screen (I could hear the HDD working so I just let it do its thing) it booted into windows just fine.
And if that doesn't work for you, I believe a simple system repair from the DVD would fix it, no need to format the entire thing
Usually you'll have to (and it's best to) especially making large leaps between chipsets. That being said, it's luck of the draw. I've had a 3 series install work fine when switched to a 8 board, but a 7 series install shit itself when being swapped to an 8.
While it may work, it's not a great idea.
I've done migrations of Windows 95, 98SE, 2000, XP, Vista and 7 between completely different sets of hardware and the results were always random. On simple setups that didn't require extraneous drivers for the chipset or disk controller, things usually worked. But on setups that had more complicated hardware, it always resulted in BSODs or other types of crashes.
But even if it works, your Windows install is going to be extremely bloated and much slower from having two different sets of drivers and configurations being present. You also may have weird quirks once you migrate that prove to be unsolvable.
I remember way back when I did a XP migration between motherboards that USB devices stopped working properly. Flash drives would suffer massive data corruption on any type of file read or write, the keyboard would miss keystrokes and the mouse would have bizarre random acceleration issues. I was only able to fix this by reinstalling Windows from scratch.
Just do a backup of whatever you want to save and reinstall the system
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