Recently I had a friend's work machine's motherboard die and I've been trying to help him get his machine back up and going. After getting another new motherboard (same model), he swapped them out and kept getting a windows repair loop and an error that said that the hardware had been changed and that windows couldn't boot. He called up Microsoft thinking it was a activation issue and the M$ helpdesk worker said that the error was from the motherboard being too different from the old one and that he'd have to re-install. He proceeded to do this, but it makes me wonder how I can back up his machine's system image if this problem would happen again in the case of a motherboard failure. Could I have restored his machine from the automatic microsoft backup utility since I had it set to make a system image? Could I do an in-place re-install of windows (like via the upgrade process where windows files are replaced and the files and program and left alone) on top of his restored drive? Thanks in advance for your help! He is currently running Windows 7 Pro OEM on an i5-2400.