I’ve always wondered how this worked, but never actually had to worry about it until I procured my new Dell Studio Laptop, as mentioned in my previous post. On my old laptop I had always kept a running backup of everything so that I could transfer it over to a new system whenever I got one—boy was I wrong! Microsoft has made it incredibly easy with their built in tool called “Windows Easy Transfer.” I followed these simple steps:
On Your Old Computer
- Go the start menu and type “windows easy transfer”
- Chose transfer cable, external hard drive/removable media or network as your transfer method
- Select your files and pick a save location
- Wait until the transfer is complete and you’re done!
*only works for Windows 2000, XP, Vista & 7
On Your New Computer
- Double-click the transfer file located in the place you specified
- Chose what to transfer
- Wait and you’re done!
*click here for an example video
This process was a lot simpler than I thought it’d be. It doesn’t erase anything from your old computer and the process is fairly fast. I used an external hard drive to do my transfer and it took about an hour to transfer 30GB over USB (my old and new laptop both have Windows 7 on them). All of your settings from your previous computer are saved, including the location of your documents and anything else you have saved on your user account. The only thing it doesn’t do is transfer your programs over. However, a windows transfer report is generated, showing you what programs are already on the new computer and what programs still need to be installed.
I hope your transfer goes as smoothly as mine did. Leave me a comment and let me know how yours went!