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If I have an image for a dell optiplex 990, can that image be used for all desktops with this brand? Or, does the hardware have to be an exact match (excluding RAM)? E.G. upgraded video card.

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closed as not a real question by Diogo, Mokubai, Simon Sheehan, Renan, Hello71 Jul 17 '12 at 0:39

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Which software did you use to create your image?? It is a recovery image and it is with a windows user created(after sysprep OOBE)? – Diogo Jun 27 '12 at 13:25
What @Diogo said - this depends entirely on the image format. Usually Windows 7 is pretty tolerant of this but I can think of scenarios where it wouldn't work. – Shinrai Jun 27 '12 at 14:15
up vote 2 down vote accepted

In the case of something minor, like a different video card, the system would boot, not use the specific drivers that had been installed for the expected video card and instead use the generic Standard VGA drivers that were present. So something like a different video card wouldn't present an issue.

Now, don't extrapolate that to mean you can take an image and use it on a completely different system. Differences like... image made n a system with an AMD processor used on a system with an Intel Processor would most certainly BSOD (different chipsets).

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My fear is latent errors, not so much BSOD. – P.Brian.Mackey Jun 27 '12 at 13:35
It is essentially the same as if you shut down, swapped the hardware, booted up and installed drivers. We don't always uninstall drivers before uninstalling hardware. With most hardware, if it is no longer present, the drivers aren't loaded. Chipset or drive controller hardware differences could be problematic tho. Otherwise no latent errors, just as if you swapped it yourself. – Bon Gart Jun 27 '12 at 20:41

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