PC Doctor January 9, 2010
Have your computer questions answered here! Search the PC Doctor archive or submit a question of your own at email@example.com
Dear PC Doctor,
I just purchased a new PC with Microsoft's new operating system, Windows 7. I'm really enjoying the new system, but I miss how things were set on my old Windows XP. Instead of spending hours adjusting settings, and transferring files; is there a way for me to transfer my user account from my old PC to my new PC? Thanks!
Congratulations on the new PC! Windows 7 is an exciting OS (translation: operating system), glad that you’re getting to try it out. In answer to your question, there is a way for you to transfer user accounts.
Simply making copies of all your documents, pictures, and videos can be tedious. And then having to make manual adjustments to your new computer to get it behaving how you're used to is also a pain. A quick and easy way to handle all this is to simply copy your user account from your old PC. Doing this can carry most of your saved data such as: documents, pictures, videos, and music. In addition it has the option of carrying over program settings and Windows system settings, as well as saved usernames and passwords. Windows Vista and Windows 7 both have a wizard tool, that can create a Windows Easy Transfer file for user account. It can be found under: Accessories > System Tools > Windows Easy Transfer. In your case, your old PC runs Windows XP, so it doesn't currently have this wizard tool. You can, however, download a version that will run on XP, for free at the following Microsoft website: tiny.cc/WindowsTransfer.
Once you have the tool installed, you should first decide how you are going to move the file from PC to PC. With the Windows Easy Transfer you have three options: transfer via a network; transfer via an Easy Transfer Cable; and transfer via a hard disk, CD, or USB drive. In your case I would save the transfer file to a CD or to a USB drive, both are cheap and easy to acquire. Chances are you don't have a network setup between both of your PCs, and it's unlikely that you have an Easy Transfer Cable.
Next run the Windows Easy Transfer wizard. Upon execution you will be given a list of the user accounts that you can choose to transfer, and then within those user accounts the items to transfer. From there, just follow the wizard tool prompts. Once you have the Windows Transfer File save it to a CD or a USB drive. You can do this by accessing the CD or drive under "My Computer."
Once you have the file saved, it's time to transfer the file to your new computer. Simply insert the CD or USB drive, and then save it to your new PC. You again can do this by accessing the CD or drive under "My Computer", and then saving it like you would with any other file. To import the user accounts from the file, simply double click on the file. This will run the wizard tool again, giving you prompts and instructions on how to import the files and settings. Once imported you will have all your old files, as well as your settings. Good luck with Window's 7, and safe computing!
PC Doctor's Tip of the Week: Easy File Locker
Wouldn't it be nice if we could save files or even folders of files to our PCs that are locked or hidden from other users? Say you have some important banking statements, school records, or receipts. It would be very nice, if we could somehow prevent these files from being accessed, deleted, edited, or even seen. Windows has a built in encryption for files saved on Windows XP and onward, that we the users can activate. It works well enough, but the process can be a little tedious, especially if you want to completely hide the file/folder. For this week's tip I have useful program that can do all of this, plus it's completely free to download.
The program is called Easy File Locker, and it can be found at: www.xoslab.com/
. What Easy File Locker does is, it will prevent other people from opening, viewing, editing, deleting, moving, and coping any locked file or folder that you specified through the program. You even have the option of hiding files and folders so that no user and no program can see that it exists. Kinda neat! The program is very light-weight, and easy to use. So go ahead, download and give it a try. I would suggest however experimenting with a few trial files/folders. Just so you can get a grasp of how the program works before you misplace or lock out an important file. Also another suggestion. Make sure you set a password from the program, and be sure to make it a good one. Use both uppercase and lowercase lettering, numbers, and even symbols. Enjoy!
Until next time…happy computing!