How to Transfer From an Old Computer to a New Computer

By Greyson Ferguson

Moving up to a newer computer is always exciting. You will likely be able to run more programs, perform more tasks and enjoy faster speed. The main downside to purchasing a new computer is having to transfer files from your old computer to your new one. Luckily, there are several ways to quickly take the important data from your current computer and place it on the new computer.

Things You'll Need

  • Flash Drive
  • CD/DVD burning drive
  • CD/DVD burning software

Step 1

Look at your older computer and see if you have a USB drive on it. USB drives have been around for years now, so as long as your computer isn't more than 10 years old you should have the drive.

Step 2

Insert the flash drive into the old computer. Open "My Computer." This will display the different drives connected to the computer, including the flash drive.

Step 3

Open the flash drive window and leave it open.

Step 4

Click and drag all of the information you would like to transfer into the flash drive's window. Once you have completed this step you can remove the flash drive from the computer.

Step 5

Plug the flash drive into the new computer. Wait a moment and click "Computer" (on newer Microsoft Windows versions). Double click the flash drive icon to display all the information you placed on the drive. Click and drag the content from the drive into the locations on the computer where you would like to add them.

Create Data CD/DVD

Step 1

Insert a blank CD or DVD into the computer (as long as you have a writable CD or DVD drive). DVDs provide more storage, which requires you to burn fewer disks when transferring the data.

Step 2

Launch your CD or DVD burning software.

Step 3

Select to burn a "Data" disk---not movie, audio or video disk.

Step 4

Click and drag the content you want to copy onto the disk. There is a display in the software that shows how much memory every file you add takes up on the disk. Click "Burn" and the data disk starts burning.

Step 5

Insert the data disk into the new computer and copy the information by opening the disk in "My Computer" ("Computer" in Microsoft Vista and newer), then click and drag the content onto the computer.

Tips & Warnings

  • If your computer does not have a USB port you can use a ZIP Drive. A ZIP drive can still be purchased at most computer electronic stores and offers you a large amount of storage. The Drive will connect to the parallel port (where the large printer cable connects to). Most new desktop computers still have this port, so you will be able to plug it into the new computer as well. Perform the same process of transferring the information between computers as you would with the flash drive.Content can be added via a wired network. If you are on a network you can send files to the other computer by dragging the files into the shared storage from the old computer, then log onto the new computer and take the files out of the shared storage. If you do not have a wired network currently installed you should use either the USB drive or CD/DVDs. Installing the network will cost more and take a good deal of time setting up.