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by Phil Ball

Q. I just got a new computer with Windows 10 and I was very excited until I realized that all my files and photos are on the old computer which has Windows XP. I need to move them over but the thought of doing it by burning CDs is daunting. Is there an easier way?

A. There are several methods to transferring files between PCs. One way costs nothing and involves transferring your data, your files, photos, and music from your old PC to removable media. This can be done by burning CDs but an even better way is to use either a large capacity USB thumb drives or an external hard drive. Just copy and paste the data to the removable media and then safely remove the drive from the old computer and plug it into the new computer. Then just copy and paste the data into the appropriate places on the new PC. Thus, documents would go into the Documents folder, photos into the Pictures folder, and music goes into the Music folder. Don’t forget to copy your bookmarks and email addresses, too. This method also provides backups for your data in the unlikely event that something goes wrong.

An even easier method is to buy a relatively inexpensive Easy Transfer cable. This connects the two computers together and then you can simply move your data from one to the other without the intermediate step. Even easier yet is to use the cable in conjunction with the free PCmover Express software. To get a free copy that you can install on both computers, simply go to and search for "PCmover Express." Then just download the software, install it, start it on both computers, and follow the easy steps. If you also want to move your software to avoid reinstalling it, you can go to Laplink and purchase their PCmover Professional which allows you to transfer not only your old PC's settings and files but the compatible software, too. This method has you up and running with the new computer in no time.

Published: Courier 3/26/16 - Page 8A