Well I’ll be getting a new computer here soon as a part of my universities laptop trade-in program. So I figured it would be a good idea to make an instructional so that I don’t forget to get anything off my computer, and why not share it!? So here it is.
(Heads up, you can access your “Control Panel” and your “My Computer” by pressing on the start menu icon in the lower left corner, in case you didn’t know.)
1)Data transport: So you have this new computer, now how are you going to get all of your information over from one to the other? Nobody wants to do 30+ “trips” with a 2gb jump drive. Well if you are allowed to, go on ahead and remove your hard drive from the first and pop it in the second. This is essentially moving what many people would call their “computer” from one machine to another. Just a little note, I’m not responsible if you void any warrenties, make sure you aren’t before you do this stuff. If you aren’t allowed to or are a little uncomfortable doing so, there are numerous ways which follow a few logic ideals. If you have an external hard drive or a very large jump drive, stop reading here and just use that.
a)If you have alot of music, 4gb+ worth, then you probably like it wherever you are, which means you probably own an iPod or some other music player. Most music players can be used just like a giant jumpdrive. If you have a 64gb iPod, then you can transfer pretty much everything.
b)If you don’t have a jump drive or a music player, but you have a DVD burner, go get some DVD’s. Each DVD can hold about 4.7gb worth of data. If you are willing to spend a little extra money, get the DVD-RW disks. These ones, you can erase and re-use so you don’t get stuck with a bunch of old transfer data from ages ago.
c) If you don’t have either, but you do have internet, you could use a service called Dropbox. You must install it on both computers and share a folder. If you are going for this option, then watch their intro video, not only will it give you some extra free space online, it’ll also explain everything so I don’t have to!
d) If you are feeling lazy and don’t want to do that, but have an e-mail account. Just email all the stuff and retrieve it on the other computer.
e) If you can’t do any of those, but you do have a jump drive, well you are going to have to do that. Hopefully you don’t have a lot of things to transfer. If you do….may God be with you.
f) If you don’t have any of those, but you do have a smart phone. Grab your usb cable and plug it in. You are going to have to do very small data transfers in the similar fashion as you would a music player. You will have to enable mass storage or usb connectivity on your phone after you plug it in.
g)If you can’t do any of that and have absolutely no friends to help you out, then I can’t help you. By this point, I’d say you are kinda S.O.L. but good luck!
2) Music! This one is pretty obvious since many people go about their life with music at their side. If you are computer savvy, you probably have all your music in one location and if so, then go get it! If you are a casual computer user, then don’t forget to check for music in these spots:
a)Music folder: Open up your My Computer and there should be a tab called “Music” under “Libraries” on the left hand side.
b)My Music: This is a folder that you can access through the Music folder. It will most commonly contain your iTunes media such as Podcasts, movies, TV shows, playlists, and music. Last I remember, iTunes had place a limit on how many times you can download the media, although I’m not sure about that anymore.
c)Downloads folder: If you have downloaded any music from websites or if you happen to be up to no good and gotten it from youtube, this is the default place that your music will have gone.
d)Desktop music folders: This is a pretty obvious place but many people actually forget it. Lots of people will download music to their desktop and then move it into a music folder on the desktop. The reason is its forgotten is because they are most frequently named “music”, so no capitals or anything grabs their attention.
3)Pictures! Personally I don’t have many pictures although many of my friends would be lost without theirs. So don’t forget these spots!
a)Check in the same spots that any music would be at.
b)Skype pictures folder: Many of you may know how to get to the Skype folder, although this one isn’t that Skype folder. Skype, upon installation, makes two folders: one for the actual program, the other for the extras that can be involved with interacting with Skype. The Skype pictures folder is located at: “C:/Users/(your name)/AppData/Roaming/Skype/pictures” (No quotation marks) . If you don’t know how to input an address such as that, I’ll put it differently. Go to “My Computer” and click on your “C:” drive, after that go to your “Users” folder and go to the folder with your name on it! After that look for the AppData folder. If you can’t find your AppData folder, you have to open up your Control Panel. Look for folder options, it may not show if you have it set to category view, if so set it to large icons. Once you’ve found it, double-click and a window will appear, go to the “View” tab and look for options under “Hidden files and folders” which will be under “Files and folders”. Its right at the top. There will be two bubbles, click on the one that says “Show hidden files, folders, and drives” and hit Apply! Once you’ve done alllll that, head back to your Users folder and open up the folder with your name on it, once you are in AppData should be right in front of you. Once in there, go to Roaming, then Skype, then pictures. WHOOO! That was a lot of work!
At least now you have the pictures you took with Skype! These pictures tend to have more value and meaning since they are probably of people whom you are friends with or are involved with so its important to get these!
c)Photoshop files: Photoshop saves files as a .PSD file which is a Photoshop “workspace” file. Its only used by Photoshop and associated adobe products. Although you can’t view them directly, they can be important since they retain layer information and filter information, both of which can be edited so if you are an art student, best to get these.
4)Work/School files: As I progress through school, I realize more and more that it would be so nice if I had every single paper, project, program, and powerpoint that I’d ever done for school. That’s why I’m not forgetting this time. Same goes for work! Now because of the variety of programs out there for work and school, I can’t cover all of them, or even .01% of them, although I will cover some of the more common ones. Generally because of the nature of work and school files and how important they are, you’ll have your own folder that holds all of them, but just in case, here is a few.
a) Photoshop/any Adobe product: These files are important, though always thought of as image files, these are very different. Photoshop saves files as .PSD files and they retain layer, filter, and brush information, along with a bunch of other jazz. Even if you’ve finished the work associated with the .PSD file, it’s important to keep them with you because Photoshop is an extremely powerful manipulator piece of software; You could take any work and alter it so much, it wouldn’t look like the original, saving you a lot of time. Photoshops default save location, as far as I can remember is in your My Documents folder, so it would be best to look there.
b)Eclipse: A powerful programming platform that many developers use. If you have any programs built with this, you’ll want to save these as archive files and you’ll be able to import them into your Eclipse IDE on your new computer. If you are using this program, I’m assuming you know what I’m talking about and how to do it.
c)Microsoft Office files: These files are, I believe, saved in your My documents by default. Whether they are a powerpoint, word, excel, or publisher document, it doesn’t matter.
5)Web Browser goodies: If you’ve used the computer you are leaving behind for a while, then you probably accumulated plenty of bookmarks. If you want to bring those with you, then you should head over to your favorite browsers Bookmarks Manager. To get there, generally you will go to the settings tab (usually denoted by a wrench or a gear icon) and go to the bookmarks manager. When you get there search around for something like export bookmarks. It may be under import bookmarks and just not noted. Once you find where you export them, go and export them. It will probably export it as an HTML file. Keep this file! You will use it with your browser on the new computer to import your bookmarks from!
6)Passwords: Naturally you are going to have a few usernames and accounts if you use your computer every so often and you’ve probably set them so that the computer remembers both so you don’t have to. Well if you are switching computers, your usernames and passwords won’t come with you because the website isn’t what remembers that information, its your web browser. Unfortunately web browsers don’t have an option to export that kind of information like you can for bookmarks, which is also good because it stops people from popping in and taking all your passwords. To deal with this, you’ll have to go to each website and try to remember them. A good thing is that your username at a website isn’t ever hidden like a password maybe, so if you have forgotten the password, you can still retrieve it as long as you have the information to access the associated e-mail address with that account. Once you’ve figured it out, take a note on a notepad or a simple text file on your computer. Once you have gotten all the ones you can remember (you’ll forget one website, trust me) and have done the whole switch to the computer, make sure you get rid of this information thoroughly. Rip up the piece of paper, delete the text file. Make sure its gone!
At this point, we’ve covered most of the important information. If you don’t need a mirror copy of your first computer, then you can stop reading right here. After this point, I have things such as preferences and such. It won’t be the end of the world if you forget these, just don’t do this procedure on December 21st, 2012 please.
7)Preferences: Personally, I love the wallpaper I have , who wouldn’t love Iron Man? There are also a lot of other things such as icon size, battery plans (different power modes), sleep timers, alarms, color schemes, all of that, I love. Its like my own home but in a virtual manner (too nerdy?). Unless you are an advanced user, you can access most of these options through the “Appearance and Personalization” category. Just take a note of what your settings are and if you have a specific wallpaper, make sure you get that image file.
8)Programs: Many times when I’ve gotten a new computer, I forget my programs. I use a lot of utility programs such as WinDirStat, CCleaner, ImgBurn, MagicDisk, and CDBurnerXP. Its a lot of these little utility programs that I completely forget about. And after about 4 or 5 months of not seeing them, I remember that I should probably use them and after looking for them, I’m astounded I don’t have them yet! So its a good idea to just go through your program files, which is on your C: Drive, and take a note of which programs you would like to have on your new computer that you have on your old.
I will probably be adding on to this as time goes on and I remember things.
Until then, take it easy!