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When you take the system drive and put it in a new box, do you rename it or do you keep the name? And when you put a fresh drive in the old box, do you give it a new name? What is with upgrading? How many of the components do you have to change until a computer loses its identity?

So a CPU is often described as the heart or the brain of a computer but where lies its soul? What determines its identity? The data on the system drive? The majority of its components?

This might sound like a not-so-serious question and it probably is but whom of you didn't already face this problem?

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closed as not a real question by Dave M, terdon, 8088, random Dec 6 '12 at 17:41

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.

2 Answers 2

I hereby declare, and it shall be forever so:

The powersupply.

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Per MS, this algorithm is used to determine whether an OEM install is the "same" computer it was initially sold on: http://www.aumha.org/win5/a/wpa.php . are you having trouble activating a windows instance after a Mobo replace?

personally a computer "is" what it does. when I rebuild a server, install the services it previously had and restore the data those services require, I consider it a new build of the same computer. think of it like a human changing clothes. each build is a differant pair of trousers. On a hardware level, everything is peripheral except the Mobo. CPUs and everything else can be swapped out, and that's just upgrades.

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