If you have a CD-RW or DVD-RW drive (in other words, a drive capable of both reading and writing
either CDs or DVDs), you can burn the information to one or more
CDs/DVDs. This has the added advantage of giving you a permanent
application backup. Remember, however, that each DVD-ROM only has a
capacity of 4.7GB and CDs have far less.
If you have an external hard disk or a thumb drive with sufficient capacity, you can store the application data there.
procedures in this section mostly apply to Windows XP migrations, they
are equally applicable to Windows Vista systems. The caveat there,
however, is that they only apply to Vista systems in the event that you
are performing a new installation. If you are upgrading from Windows
Vista to Windows 7, all of the application and data migration is handled
as part of the upgrade process, and you do not need to migrate your
applications or data.
If you decide to store your
application data on an external drive, you should first check to ensure
that you have sufficient capacity:
When you have all the
equipment and supplies you will need, you can get started. Broadly
speaking, you perform five tasks to migrate your applications:
Install the migration software on your existing system.
Use the migration software to create your application archive, and store that archive.
Install Windows 7 and any antivirus software you want to run.
Install the migration software under Windows 7.
Use the migration software to retrieve your application archive and install it under Windows 7.
One limitation you should
be aware of is that, at least as far as PC Relocator is concerned, it is
not capable of migrating security software. Therefore, this is the one
type of software that you must manually install, preferably before you
install your other migrated software.
Installing the migration software is easy. For this example, we installed PC Relocator using the following steps:
Now we need to get
started with the actual migration. One point you should note before
beginning is that the relocation archive you create does not delete
anything from your existing system configuration. It only copies and
We have found over
time that the computed transfer estimate time tends to overstate how
long a relocation will take. In this example, the computed time is 21
hours, 28 minutes. In reality, this will be done in about 6 hours.
one caveat to leaving the migration unattended is if you selected to
use a CD or DVD burner for your storage, you will be regularly prompted
to insert a new blank disk when the existing one is full. As you do,
remember to label, tag, and mark the disks, and keep them in order—this
will become important when you reinstall the application archive.
If you are
using an external disk, check that external disk and make sure that an
archive file, with the name you gave it in step 7, actually exists.
you are using CD/DVD ROMs, load the first disk and then browse to it
and make sure that an archive file with the correct name from step 6
exists on the CD or DVD. You might want to check one or two other disks
as well, if you have multiple disks, to make sure that the subsequent
archives were correctly created.
After you have created and verified the application archive, you are ready to install Windows 7.
This task is the most
irreversible step in the entire process. The reason is that when you
install Windows 7, you will have effectively destroyed your old system
installation. This is why you need to take such pains in creating and
verifying the application archive before proceeding to this task.
If you used an
external drive to hold your application archive, you should detach it
while you install Windows 7. Reattach
the drive at the end of this task, after you have installed Windows 7
and your security software (such as Norton or other antivirus,
antispyware, and firewall software). At a minimum, you should make sure
that Microsoft’s built-in firewall is activated.
After you have so installed Windows 7 and your security software, you need to deal with three more items:
Configure your computer so your Internet connection is working properly.
If you did not install Windows updates during the installation of Windows 7, go to http://update.microsoft.com/ and make sure that your computer has all necessary updates and patches.
your chosen security software. If you are using third-party software,
install that now, then activate it, and follow the instructions to make
sure that you have the latest antivirus definitions. If you are using
Microsoft’s security software, make sure that it is fully activated and
that it has the latest definitions.
At the end of this process, you will probably be asked to restart your computer, perhaps several times.
As in Task 1, this
task involves running the installer for your migration software. Now you
are going to reinstall it under your new Windows 7 installation so that
you can use it to install your application archive. In our case, follow
Now we can get started with
the other end of the migration process. If you are using an external
drive, verify that it is hooked up to your computer and that the
computer can recognize the data on the hard drive. If you are using CD
or DVD discs, check several of the discs to make sure that your new
system can read them. When you are ready to start, follow these steps:
If an important
application doesn’t migrate properly, your best bet is to try a direct
re-installation of the application. Generally speaking, if the
application migration software can’t get it to work right, then you’ll
need the original installer to resolve the problem.
Also, depending on the
software package, you might be required to re-enter the license key for
your software. This is done to validate your software licensing and to
bind the license key to the computer you are now using.