A lot of individuals and enterprises are no doubt timing their new PC purchasing plans to coincide with Microsoft’s July 29 release of Windows 10. If you or your organization are in that category, it probably wouldn’t be a bad idea to start considering the approach you’re going to take to move your data to those new PCs.
According to Thomas Koll, CEO of Laplink Software, a PC migration software provider in Bellevue, Wash., Windows 10 doesn’t come with any tools to help you with that data transfer.
“For many users, getting their data files, such as photos, videos, music, email, contacts, spreadsheets, documents, etc. to their new PC is a major concern,” Koll said. “[It] may even result in delaying the purchase of a new PC.”
According to Koll, a user can choose from four basic options to move data files to a new PC:
- Upload files from the old PC to cloud storage (Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox, etc.). Then the user can easily access from anywhere and download the files to his new PC. But if the user has a lot of data, the upload will take a very long time, and the data might exceed available storage.
- Transfer using a USB stick or external hard drive.
- Transfer across a network using Explorer by sharing the old hard drive to the new PC.
- Use a file transfer utility.
The problem with all of those options, Koll said, is that the user has to know exactly what he wants to transfer and where the data is located on the old PC, and he has to manage the process. Beyond that, Koll explained, users often fail to identify all of the data they want to transfer.
“A typical user will miss quite a bit of data,” Koll said. “Perhaps they leave behind their Outlook data, files they accidentally saved in an unusual location, data related to a specific application that was saved in the application’s folder (such as tax files), Internet favorites, shortcuts, and much more.”
Not surprisingly, Koll is touting Laplink’s PCmover Professional as a better option: He claims that PCmover is the only software that can selectively move programs, files and settings from an old Windows PC to a new one. Here are what he sees as the big selling points:
- You simply install PCmover on both of the computers and follow a wizard to transfer everything desired to the new PC.
- You don’t need to know where the files are located, because PCmover finds and transfers all the files you want, regardless of where they were saved.
- PCmover transfers more than just data files. It also automatically transfers all selected programs and settings. And programs are transferred ready to use on the new PC, so you don’t have to reinstall them or find old CDs or license keys.
- PCmover transfers using any home or business network (wired or wireless) or using a direct-connect Laplink High Speed Transfer Cable.
- Laplink provides free 24/7 transfer assistance from certified PC migration experts who will guide you through the transfer over the phone or by remote control.
“Laplink also offers PCmover Enterprise, which leverages the PCmover technology to allow IT departments to easily set up and manage controlled PC deployment projects for 1,000 to hundreds of thousands of PCs,” Koll said. “Organizations using PCmover Enterprise typically save over $300 per PC deployed by reducing deployment labor, post-migration support, and help desk calls, as well as user down time—and end-user satisfaction is higher.”
If you’re certain you want to copy only data files, Koll is highlighting another product: Laplink Sync, which transfers files between PCs, Macs, Android and iOS devices utilizing a three-step wizard. According to Koll, files are transferred directly between devices to protect privacy—no copies exist in cloud storage. Laplink Sync can be used to transfer files or to keep files synchronized between devices, he said.
Though I can’t vouch for the PCmover software myself, I have used Laplink back in the day, and as I recall, I found it very helpful. So I was quite interested in finding out what Laplink is offering in the run-up to the Windows 10 release.
A contributing writer on IT management and career topics with IT Business Edge since 2009, Don Tennant began his technology journalism career in 1990 in Hong Kong, where he served as editor of the Hong Kong edition of Computerworld. After returning to the U.S. in 2000, he became Editor in Chief of the U.S. edition of Computerworld, and later assumed the editorial directorship of Computerworld and InfoWorld. Don was presented with the 2007 Timothy White Award for Editorial Integrity by American Business Media, and he is a recipient of the Jesse H. Neal National Business Journalism Award for editorial excellence in news coverage. Follow him on Twitter @dontennant.