"So does this problem exist with oem xp. I dont wont have to buy another copy of xp if i buy a new video card for instance."
If you buy a new vid card, XP shouldn't give you any crap. I've changed vid cards, network cards, and sound cards, in countless machines running XP, and none have given me a problem. I HAVE had some XP boxes get suspicious if I change hard-drives, RAM, and motherboards, though.
Also, since I work in a building with Microsoft, and work regularly with Microsoft personnel, I've already gone through that issue with them concerning OEM OS disks going out with PCs and to trade shows. They all say the same things back. Pulling out their hands and counting off on their fingers, they say:
1. Do you have a license that came with it?
2. Where did you get it from?
3. What are you using it for?
4. What brought you to this problem?
Their answers go something like this:
1. No license, no help.
2. Source means a lot.
3. We do/do-not support that user scenario.
4. will either get you a: "You can try our support site for knowledge base information..." or: "Did you read the EULA?"
OEM can be great, because it's cheap, but depending on the situation you can run into problems. So "Support" is a good issue to be concerned about. OEM means you'd better think about your troubleshooting before you jump into it. Just a word of warning.
When you buy OEM software (especially from MS) you tend to get things like Jerigorn mentioned, about finding out you only have one seat, or a set number of reinstalls, or that the documentation is not there or that the company (MS in this case) won't provide you with full support. When Office 2000 came out (and up until the next version came in) I ran into multiple instances where another person or myself had bought Office 2000 as OEM, and found out they only had 2 reinstalls. This was a real pain, since if you wiped your machine and started over more than once, you were S.O.L.
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