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A month or two ago I received help and suggestions here regarding installing a new HP computer for my sister-in-law. There were only a few items to transfer and I did that successfully with a flash or finger USB drive. (Can we please come up with a definitive name for those little suckers? I have heard them called thumb drives as well). In the next week to 10 days I will be installing a new HP desktop which has W7 of course, replacing my wife's old XP with SP2. She has lots of files and programs that need to be transferred and I have already purchased a Windows Easy Transfer (WET) cable, USB to USB and have downloaded the software onto the XP. W7 already has the software installed, ready to go. I may have to upgrade WordPerfect with new X5 version. That is not a problem except for price ;) . I will try to install our WP 8 first. Long preamble to get to my question which is: Do I transfer files first from a dozen or so programs then reload the programs? If files are first where do they reside without a "home to go to"? After installing the programs do the various files from various programs know where to go like homing pidgeons?
She also uses Dragon Naturally Speaking Pro since she has MS and does a lot of computer work using her voice instead of her fingers.
 

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I keep all of my files in a folder called "57". In that folder I then have many subfolders according to my needs - Misc, Car, Financial, Vacations, Computer, etc. Since my wife also uses the computer, she has a folder called "Mrs57" and does the same with sub-folders. Some sub-folders may have sub-sub folders. These folders may contain Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc files.

This makes transferring to new computers or backups to "outside" sources quite simple since everything is in one folder for each user.

The various software usually can be set to "save to" wherever you wish to direct, but can also be modified to send to whatever folder you like since saving everything in one folder (say "documents") would make most things difficult to find unless you only have 10-20 files. That's why I don't use the default "(my) documents" folder (my "57" and "Mrs57" folders are inside the documents folder). This has worked for me for almost 30 years. I have thousands of files (going back almost 30 years) and never have difficulty finding anything since each file goes into a folder with an appropriate "name". I realize that this may not work for everyone and that each person's brain likes to store things in a different manner.

When you click the "save as" tab, that's where you tell the software where to save your files...
 

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Sailmaker
Optional (Explain at last step )What I would is very very first spend a few dollars and get a good image tool I use acronis.
Install all programs needed or wanted on the new system.
Then open each up to make sure they work they may even want to get updates if you are on a new OS and thats fine too.
Once you have each working good and are ready for the saved data files 57's approach is flawless and so easy to keep track of in my view.
Once done open each program direct it to the new folder for data and if possible set that as the default data directory.
Now the explanation on image software saving a complete image of the drive allows you to retrive data from it or even reinstall a complete working copy of the system should you have a failure, I have abattled MS from the age of 34 and now 56 and one thing I have learned I make really big mistakes on my computer and the image has saved my day many times and saddly it is not my fault just the nature of the beast.
 

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When formatting the new hard disc you can create 2 partitions. One for OS (windows) and the other one for data. 40Gb is usually enough for OS. When installing a software it goes on the OS drive (usually C: ) and when you crate a file (Word, Excel, etc) you save it on the data drive (could be D: ).
Your files will be easier to manage as well as backups and images.

That mean that all data files from your previous computer would go on the D: drive and as mentionned you would set all your software to look on the drive for data files.
 

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If files are first where do they reside without a "home to go to"?
Files no longer reside in the program folder, at least they shouldn't. They typically are stored in the in the user's home directory. Under WinXP, that was 'C:\My Documents\<username>'. Under Win7 is it 'C:\Users\<username>'. Note that the drive and directory can be changed. Changing the location is often a good idea, especially if their are a lot of personal documents that need to go on a separate drive.

I have already purchased a Windows Easy Transfer (WET) cable,
Do they still sell those things? IMHO, they are a total waste of money. Windows networking does the job just as well and is included with Windows. CAT5 network cables can be purchased for $5-$10 or less and can be used for other networking connections.

She has lots of files and programs that need to be transferred
May I suggest installing the existing drive in an external USB drive case? That way, the entire drive will be available for searching and copying or future backups. (For security reasons, you probably want to take the drive out of the old system, anyway.)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanx to all for responding. I have a La Cie external hard drive hooked to my computer in another room which I don't fire up nearly as often as I should. Who does in all honesty? I did check out cat5 method (I have more than enough short cat5 cables on the shelf) but WET looked like my best bet at this early stage. More and more I am leaning towards setting up an open bar and inviting yooz guys over. I could supervise. Follow 57, he was here about 8 months ago setting up a new Sharp LED tv for my wife in our bedroom. He could have had booze but he took money instead. Crazy guy.:) Stay tuned probably in a week or so. sailmaker
 

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When formatting the new hard disc you can create 2 partitions

The title is a quote from Bob_Mtl in an earlier post. Why would I want to or have to format a drive in a pre configured off the shelf HP computer that has W7 installed along with a load of bloatware? I will be dumping most if not all garbage programs that "surely everyone in the world will want and appreciate this wonderful program that I have created".
ScaryBob has a suggestion worth considering, that is putting current hard drive with XP installed and a working WordPerfect program in an external USB box. It would be Drive D: or whatever I chose. The problem that started my wife's quest for a new computer is the computer was locking up at various times, nothing that would point to one program over another. The only recourse was to do a three-finger-salute to bring up task manager or do a warm boot or reboot.
Installing the old hard drive would bring over the unknown fault and perhaps "infect" the new hard drive. Ain't goin' there nohow, noway. sailmaker
 

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My bad, I have misread your post regarding the OS already installed.
In that case follow 57 advice by creating a folder for all your data files.
Else, windows will save all data files under User's name. Means that according to the login name data will be saved under C:\Users\<name>. This way other users automatically do not have access to your files, but that can be easily changed to all users access.

Unless you have a MS copy of Win7, reformating and reinstalling the recovery partition (or the HP dvd) will reinstall all the great HP software.
 

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Creating two partitions (three for Win7 because it creates an extra system boot partition) make it easier to manage system backups and protects data in case of an O/S meltdown. I take images of the system drive partitions (system + C) for quick O/S restore. Data is stored on the D partition or disk, which is backed up by synchronizing the directory structure. That way, reinstalling or restoring the O/S does not affect the data on D (or least it shouldn't and doesn't with the retail version of Windows.)

Storing boot information, operating system files and user data on separate partitions and disks has been done for decades in the IT and server world. It provides better data security and other advantages such as easier upgrades, cost savings and better performance. For example, I have Win7 on a 60GB SSD drive for increased performance. Data is on a WD Green drive. Infrequently accessed files and backups are on a small, lightweight server.
 

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regarding the OS already installed

Partitions can be resized and manipulated using software.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
danbcman: Quote from ScaryBob: May I suggest installing the existing drive in an external USB drive case? That way, the entire drive will be available for searching and copying or future backups.
The Windows Easy Transfer (WET) USB to USB cable and software is for the intial movement of files from XP comp to the new W7 HP computer. sailmaker
 

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And keep in mind, just because software runs under XP does NOT guarantee it working under Win7, either x32 or x64.

Bizarre case in point: I have this ancient Mahjong game with real easy to see tiles that ran under Win 3.1 and still ran under WinXP SP3! NOT Win7 x64 unfortunately. Really miss that. :)

About the WP8... Too much of it was really quite buggy, I had it. WP9 got better and would suggest for Win7 platform systems, WP X5. Running X4 here and it's just fine. I think too much of WP8 would clash badly with Win7 to make the effort worthwhile.

Cameron
 

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Some good suggestions. I have done about 400 or more of these types of data movement. I always use an external USB drive. Copy the My Documents folder, Desktop, etc folders to the external HD. If you are using outlook you will need to export a PST file to the external HD. If she uses Outlook express or some other email program then you will have to find directions for "exporting" the information.

Keep the computers side my side and install all of your programs on to the new machine one at a time. Checking for compatibility and then update each program with patches and such. After the programs are installed copy the contents of your external HD one folder at a time to Windows 7 in the appropriate place. If you open Computer it is fairly evident how Windows 7 handles the user folders. C:\Users\<name>

Set your save destinations one by one for the programs you install on the new machine.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
to CamDaB: Yes I agree with you ... a quote from my original post: I may have to upgrade WordPerfect with new X5 version .
My wife has stayed with gmail and still peeks at hotmail now and again. W7 does not support outlook express of course.
to Quick Silver: wow,there may not be enough days left in my time on earth to do as you have done many times. I thought the whole idea of WET was to do the transfers in fell swoop (swell foop? ;)) I will retire to the bar and await further input. The replies here have been much appreciated. Thanx folks. sailmaker
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Configuring new HP W7 computer

I'm baaaak. Picked up an HP 6710f with 20" LCD/LED monitor (with one tiny green pixel). Installed 35 Microsoft updates. One of first things I did yesterday was run PC DeCrapifier. I installed our old WordPerfect 8 which was not supposed to work in W7. Had bit of a struggle finding it on new system but eventually did and put shortcut on desktop. Also made a short test file, saved it and recalled it so at this point the naysayers regarding WP8 not working are on hold. Perhaps when I transfer my wife's WP files to the new comp. they may be found right and me wrong (yeah, right!). At this early stage the big thing is getting familiar with all new layouts, MS wording or names of programs etc. I have burned the 3 recovery DVD's so I am covering my butt in that regard. Stay tuned. sailmaker
 

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Discussion Starter #17
So far ...

... Mon April 25 WordPerfect 8 works just fine on W7 (64bit). Also found a program that saves/returns desktop icons on a 64bit computer that get scrambled once in a while to the frustration of all users everywhere. This reply is from my computer so I don't have url at this time. Control Panel is a piece of doo-doo in W7 compared to the one in XP. 99% of changes in W7 from XP seem to be make work project for 12-year-old public school dropouts who should not be on payroll at MS. Change for the sake of change = yeuch! Windows Easy Transfer (WET) transferred about 95% of selected files from old XP to new W7 computer. The files dropped could well have been my fault for not double checking prior to transfer. More later. sailmaker
 

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Thanx Bob_Mtl for that hint. Switching my time between XP here and W7 on the computer down the hall (wife's new computer) is warping my addled brain. I did finally notice that teeny tiny arrow which opened the display mode (tiles, list, icons etc). Oh for the good old days when I could go to Premier Computer on Lakeshore Road in Etobicoke and have a computer built to my specs. Yes I know Tiger Direct will do that but the raport with Andre was like doctor/patient. One more program transfer/setup (Dragon Naturally Speaking) and Carol can have her new toy. Thanks to all. sailmaker:)
 
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