How To Transfer Contacts with a USB Drive

By Justin H. Pot

Contacts matter. Being able to keep in touch with friends and family means knowing their phone number, email address and other contact information. Whether you're moving to a new computer and want to take your contacts with you, or simply want to back up you contacts on a computer other than your primary machine, exporting your contacts via a Comma Separated Value (CSV) file to your flash drive and transferring it to another machine using the flash drive is an efficient method.

Things You'll Need

  • A flash drive

Step 1

Open your email program or web-based email service.

Step 2

Open your contacts. In Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express, click "Contacts." In Mozilla Thunderbird, click "Tools" and then "Address Book."In Gmail, click "Contacts." In Yahoo Mail click "Contacts." In Hotmail click "Contact List."

Step 3

Export your contacts to a CSV file. In Outlook and Outlook Express click "File," followed by "Import and Export," then follow the on-screen prompts, being sure to export to a CSV file and to save the file to your flash drive. In Mozilla Thunderbird click "Tools," followed by "Export." Save your contacts as an CSV file onto your flash drive. Gmail users should click "Export," then select "Outlook CSV" format, then click "Export." Save the resulting file to your flash drive. Yahoo users should click "Import/Export," then click the "Microsoft Outlook" export button. Save the resulting file to your flash drive. Hotmail users should click "Manage," then click "Export." Save the resulting file to your flash drive.

Step 4

Unmount your flash drive and unplug it.

Step 5

Plug your flash drive into the computer you want to transfer your files to.

Step 6

Import the CSV file into your email program of choice. Open your contacts, then find the import function (typically right beside the export function). Alternatively, simply drag the CSV to the folder of your choice on the new computer to back it up.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you use an email program other than those explained here, consult that program's documentation for more information.
  • Some email providers, such as AOL, do not provide a way to export contacts.