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New OS With New Motherboard?

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RobPatten

The issue is not that the product is made by HP.

HP stopped releasing BIOS updates for the machine in question some years ago, the machine apparently was bought in 2002.

The new updated BIOS that was purchased was produced by a third party company. Therefore it will not be "branded" as an HP BIOS and probably other BIOS strings such as the model number will be different to the more customised HP BIOS he had before.

Like you, I have never had an issue in a BIOS update released by the PC manufacturer (or motherboard manufacturer) triggering a Windows re-activation, be it Dell, HP, Packard Bell, Sony, or any of the countless motherboard manufacturers I have encountered.

He has effectively replaced a branded HP BIOS with a different Brand X BIOS, and Windows has detected the difference as a motherboard change.

This in turn has triggered the need to re-activate, which in itself should not be a problem (but appears to be in this case, probably more due to bad luck and misunderstanding when calling the activation centre than any specific Microsoft policy).