First we will look at Windows Easy Transfer. Windows Easy Transfer is very simple to use and you get to decide what files you want to transfer over.

What you can transfer with Windows Easy Transfer?

  1. Files and folders
  2. E-mail settings, contact and messages (install the software first)
  3. Program settings: All your custom setting. It is important to install the program first on the new PC and always run it at least once before doing the transfer.
  4. You user accounts and setting like desktop backgrounds, network configuration.
  5. Internet settings such as you favorites tab and cookies.
  6. You Music play lists, music files and picture files.

To start the Transfer wizard log into the computer you want to transfer files from and click the windows start button on the bottom left of the screen. Then select “All Programs” “Accessories” “System Tools” “File and Transfer Wizard” .

Alternatively you can use a sweet little program I found called Laplink PC Mover.  This program is great for transferring all your software and user settings over to your new PC.  The software also comes with an easy transfer cable to help make your life a little easier.

What Method of transfer to use?

That will depend on your setup. If you do not have a network setup (The easiest way to transfer” then that will not be an option and if you do not have an external media drive you will not be able to use that. Here are your choices and how to do each one.

Easy Transfer Cable

An Easy Transfer Cable is a unique USB cable that allows you to connect two computers together using your USB ports. (most likely you old system has a USB portit but check to be sure). This method is one of the best because of how simple it is. The cost of the EASY TRANSFER CABLE is around $25-50 bucks ( Ebay has IT ). This method will work great transferring files from XP to Vista or XP to XP. For this method you will start the transfer wizard on the new computer. Do not plug the cable in until you are asked to. Just follow the on screen prompts and do what it says.


Connect both computers to your network, start Windows Easy Transfer on the new computer (the computer to which you want to transfer files and settings), follow the instructions. If you want to transfer the files over with out copying them (I think the beter way to go) you will need to get the transfer KEY from the new Computer and start the wizard on the old one and type that key in. It is not a bad idea to make a copy and just send all the files over. This may help in the future incase you loose files and no longer have the old system.

DVDs or CD

This option is straight forward. You simply start the transfer wizard on the old system and select DVD/CD. Windows Easy Transfer will let you know how many discs you will need for the transfer. Be sure to check that your media can be used on both machines. For instance does your new computer have DVD/Cd ( 99% of the time it will but never hurts to check). Once all the data is copies over start Windows Easy Transfer on your new computer and just follow the install instructions for transferring from a disc. If you are transferring data from 2000 or XP over to Vista you will not be able to use DVD media.

External hard disk ( Hard drive or USB memory stick )

Start Windows Easy Transfer on your new computer (the computer to which you want to transfer files and settings), and then follow the instructions for using a USB flash drive or an external hard disk. During the transfer process, Windows Easy Transfer will estimate how much disk space is needed to transfer your selections. If you use a USB flash drive, try to use one with enough storage space for the entire transfer. If your USB flash drive isn’t large enough to transfer everything at once, you can copy as many files as it will hold, transfer those files to the new computer, and then reconnect the drive to the old computer and repeat the process.

So what do I transfer over?

You have the option of transferring all user accounts, files, and settings to the new computer or transfer your user account, files, and settings only. You can also use an advanced option to transfer specific folders.

  1. “All user accounts, files and setting” This will transfer over all users, files and settings. If you are on a domain you must set that up first. If you do not know what a domain is then you most likely are not on one.
  2. “My user account, files and setting only”. This option will just transfer over your user account info, files and settings not other users.
  3. “Advanced options”. This is the option you want for more advanced features such as only transferring a select number of user’s accounts, files and setting. You will also be able to select the folders you want to transfer over as well as program settings. Be sure and install the programs you want first on the new computer before running the transfer on the new computer. If you do not then the programs setting will not transfer over.

What versions of Windows can I transfer to and from?

Windows Easy Transfer works for a PC using Windows 2000, (only files) XP and Vista .

Do I have to use the file transfer if I upgrade from XP to Vista ?

How do I get Windows Easy Transfer if it is not already on my computer?

When ever you upgrade all the files and setting including programs will automatically transfer over. It is always wise to make a backup of your data before you perform an upgrade. You may also need to reactivate some programs when upgrading from XP to Vista . This should not be an issue if it is legal software.

data migration | file transfer software

Be Sociable, Share!