In this particular article, we will discuss the various methods used to transfer programs to a new computer. We will also discuss various applications and tools that are commonly used to streamline and simplify these processes for the average user. Before transferring, always make sure that the software that is being transferred is compatible with the new operating system and that you have your registration information at hand. Make sure that EULA is followed, and in some cases, the developers of the software that is being transferred will need to be notified of the transfer of existing software to a new computer.

Method #1: Laplink PC Mover

Laplink PC Mover is a robust application available for download and purchase at http://www.laplink.com/pcmover/pcmoverpro.html. A full list of pricing and package options are are available from there as well. The base price is $29.95 for a single download license. Depending on which type of package, and how many licenses are being purchased, the price will vary. Laplink PC Mover not only allows you to transfer software and data from various types of media, and even hard drives themselves, but can also transfer from backup images. While Laplink PC Mover isn’t free, it does have a lot of options that aren’t available anywhere else.

Method #2: Microsoft Easy Transfer For Windows XP

Microsoft has a free tool available for download.

Microsoft Easy Transfer For Windows XP allows the user to transfer files, data, media, settings, and some software using transfer cables, networks, CDs, DVDs, and external drives. While this application is geared specifically towards a transfer from Windows XP to Vista, it can also be used for Windows 7. Microsoft has a complete list of technical details HERE.

Method #3: DVD/CD Backup Reinstall

In the event that you don’t have the required hardware to perform a direct pc-to-pc transfer, this is where having your software registration will come in handy. The first step is to make sure that the software you are using is compatible with the operating system (Windows 7). Most of the time, you won’t have to worry about compatibility issues, but it has been known to happen. It’s important to contact the software manufacturer to make sure that there aren’t any issues regarding software conflicts. In the event of software incompatibility, the software manufacturer may have a version that is compatible with Windows 7, and may have a different software package that reflects this.

The DVD/CD Backup Reinstallation is a fairly quick and easy process. Make sure that you have your registration information handy, such as license keys, codes and any personal information that was used during the original installation. After installing the software on your new PC, simply re-enter your license information, and you should be set. Afterwards, depending on the EULA, you may be required to uninstall the application from your old computer.

Method #4: Drive/Registry Key Transfer

This final method is geared towards more advanced users, and requires a moderate to advanced level of expertise, and knowledge of the windows registry and system settings.

Some applications do not make use of the windows registry to lock themselves to a particular PC and may simply be copied over or even exclusively used with an external data storage device. If this is the case, the software manufacturer will usually notify the user of this feature, and the software can simply be copied over without use of secondary software transfer devices and applications. In the event that the software has to be copied to Windows 7, it is important to backup the windows registry before copying registry values from the old installation.

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