How to Transfer Files in Windows 7 or Windows 8
Windows offers a cool program called Windows Easy Transfer, which makes the transfer of files from your old computer to your new one a snap. All you really need to do is find the right process for your operating system, and you are set. Users of Windows 7 and Windows 8 will both find helpful information to make the process super easy.
How to Manually Transfer Files
If you prefer the idea of manually transferring your files, and you have an external hard drive big enough to store all of your MP3s, photos, and video files, you can perform most computer upgrades simply by connecting your old computer to the external drive, clicking and dragging your files, then transferring them from the external drive onto your new computer.
Transferring Your Files from a PC to Mac or Mac to PC
You can take the same approach as with manual file transfers above by connecting your external hard drive to your new computer with a USB cable and manually moving the files over. Alternatively, if both computers have Firewire, you can transfer files without the need for an external hard drive.
Transferring Programs to a New Computer
Sometimes your data is not all you will want to transfer from your old computer. You may also want to move over some of your favourite programs and applications. The only complication is that you may have to upgrade those programs and applications for compatibility with your new computer. If you use Windows Easy Transfer to move your data from one computer to another, you will also get recommendations on which apps and programs you may want to install on your new machine.
Ensuring Data Safety
Do not forget the importance of backing up your data if you are storing all of your files locally on your computer. If you are using personal cloud storage, then you are ahead of the rest. Without a good backup in place, you could lose everything.
If you have an external hard drive, backing up your data on a nightly basis can be as easy as performing file sync in Windows Sync Centre. To find it, just click the Start button and type “sync center” into the program search field. By following the wizard’s instructions, you will be able to set up scheduled syncs so that the data on your computer is backed up on a regular basis.
If you own a Mac, you have a variety of choices and platforms for backing up your data, depending on what version of OS X you’re running. Options range from the iCloud to programs like Time Machine and Time Capsule.
How to Wipe a Hard Drive
Remember, moving files off your old computer does not entirely get rid of them. One of the best ways to clear off your hard drive (or “wipe” it) is to use a third-party software program that will remove all traces of information that existed on your hard drive. This makes it possible for you to hand your old PC down to someone else without having to worry about remaining bank information or passwords. Just look for “data destruction” software programs, many of which you can find for free online.