How do I do I add a TV capture card to an XP machine without running afoul of the 'hardware configuration' key?
March 2, 2004 8:15 AM   Subscribe

I'm getting a new computer in a few weeks, but I have a TV capture card I want to transfer from my old machine into the new one. Since it's going to be an XP machine, in light of the weird "hardware configuration" key they built into the software, should I install the capture card before I boot the machine for the first time, or should I wait until afterwards? On the one hand, I'd like to make sure the machine works as is before I crack it open, but on the other hand, I would not like to spend a bunch of time on hold with Microsoft to get the damned OS unlocked. How touchy is the XP hardware configuration key? (I know, I know, buy a Mac...)
posted by headspace to Computers & Internet (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: It's not really that touchy. I've been tinkering with my XP box for three years and it's never complained. What it checks for exactly is on this page. Basically, as long as 7 of the original 10 are unchanged, your XP will not complain. A TV capture card is not in one of those categories, so add away.

To see how many "yes" votes your computer has, XPInfo will let you know.
posted by zsazsa at 8:26 AM on March 2, 2004

Best answer: Also on the linked page: If, following the activation after setup, you do not need to contact the activation center for 120 days (any changes you make during this time being seen as acceptable when the system boots), then the sheet is swept clean and you can start again using the current hardware as the new baseline to make more changes.

So that basically means you can do ANYTHING to your computer hardware-wize in the first 120 days, including swapping out all hardware, reformatting your hard disk, etc.
posted by zsazsa at 8:29 AM on March 2, 2004

Response by poster: YAY! Thank you so much, zsazsa, that's excellent news and a great resource! Thank you!
posted by headspace at 8:48 AM on March 2, 2004

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