How To Copy Files And Settings Between Windows PCs With Easy TransferWritten by John Thompson on July 30, 2011 · Filed under How To, Software
Moving from one computer to another or upgrading your present computer is a laborious task at best. Going through each file manually to make sure you have all your documents, music and photos is just the start. What about all those bookmarks you have? What about your settings that have your PC running just as you want it to?
Under a regular backup, even when using a program such as Cloudberry or Carbonite, these things would often be forgotten, but if you’re moving from one Windows computer to another then you can make use of Windows Easy Transfer instead.
Although the Easy Transfer application has only been included with Windows since the release of Vista, you can also download a version for Windows XP from Microsoft’s website, making it compatible with XP, Vista and Windows 7 based computers.
Instead of having to manually back up all of your data when switching machines, you can simply open up Windows Easy Transfer, click on a few buttons and then call it a day while the hard work is done for you in the background. The program will transfer not only your documents, music and photos, but also your user accounts, computer settings and internet favourites.
Before choosing what exactly you want backing up during the process, you must first select how the data will be transferred. You can choose to use an Easy Transfer cable to directly transfer the files from one to the other, a network to transfer the files to another machine on your network, or an external hard drive or pen drive. If you’re upgrading the machine you’re currently backing up, you’ll want to choose the external hard drive option.
Once you have told the program that this is your old computer that you wish to back up the data from, it will begin to scan the contents of all the users on the computer to see which files and settings can be backed up. If you don’t want to back up everything that you have, you can manually uncheck certain items. You will be given a size estimate of the files that will be backed up, and all files are split up in to different categories such as ‘Documents’ and ‘Windows Settings’.
As all of the data that will be backed up is compiled in to one file, you will be able to set a password so that it can’t be accessed by an unauthorised user. If you don’t want to set a password, you can just leave the fields blank and commence the backing up of all your data.
Depending on how much data you have, this process may take a while, but unless your dealing with terabytes of media it shouldn’t take a monstrous amount of time. When everything has been backup up and you have your new computer ready, you can open Windows Easy Transfer on the new machine and begin to import all of that data you just collected. Just like the backup, this is an automated process and you won’t have to do much while your files slot in to place on your new PC.
If you’re moving from one computer to another, Windows Easy Transfer is definitely the best way to go about it. It’s seamless, mostly automated, and gives you a lot of choices for backing up your data. If you’re running Windows XP, Vista or 7 then it’s well worth checking out.