Assuming I just bought laptop. Pretty cheap; and I have pretty good processor (let's say 48-bit) and RAM around.

I start computer it works as it would.
I turn off computer. Correctly change processor/RAM.
I start computer again.
Is there any type of risk?

Edited by RikTelner

3 Years
Discussion Span
Last Post by deceptikon

If the processor is not supported by the motherboard, it wont boot. If you put in another processor, but overclock it or fail to cool it, it will just shut down when it over heats.

If the memory is incorrect/not compatible, the computer wont boot. If the memory is compatible, but its bad memory, you'll experience errors/blue screens (assuming windows).

What kind of risk are you concerned about?


Ok, if you cover everything, it's compatible, there is cooler which is already in laptop. Is there any real risk?

Which risk?:
- Damage of any other component (including itself).
- Lowering performance of any other component (including itself).
- No-boot-much-smoke syndrome.

Edited by RikTelner


I've haven't experienced any of those issues first hand. My experience is that the computer will not boot if you plug in a component that is incompatible.

With regards to performance, if you plug in and configure the component incorrectly, I would say that's a possibility.

Unlike 15 years ago, motherboards and their CMOS/BIOS is auto configured. Back in the day, yes you could configure a component incorrectly. I don't think this would be a concern these days.

If you look at the motherboard docs, you should be able to figure out what components are compatible.


But if you assume RAM and CPU's are compatible.
The cooling works et cetera.

What could be risk then?


Again, my experience has been that when i have installed incompatible components, the system just wont boot.

I havent seen any instances where components have caught on fire, or melted. I would tend to think that the worst case scenario, you will short out something on the motherboard.

Im sure you have seen posts/questions by people saying that their computer was fine, they powered it on, then heard some popping, sparks, etc... and the computer no longer boots. This would be caused by a power problem, faulty equipment, etc..

If you have some equipment that you found and you dont know if it works, i'd consider not plugging into a computer system that I've invested in. If its in a box or a drawer, chances are that something may be wrong with it, or its legacy and not worth using any longer.


my experience has been that when i have installed incompatible components, the system just wont boot.

But if you assume RAM and CPU's are compatible.


But thanks. You answered.


Another potential issue with hardware changes is you may need to reactivate Windows. Typically this only happens with significant changes like a motherboard replacement, but it's not unheard of for minor hardware changes or even non-hardware changes to trigger a reactivation notice.

This question has already been answered. Start a new discussion instead.
Have something to contribute to this discussion? Please be thoughtful, detailed and courteous, and be sure to adhere to our posting rules.