Move files from old Windows PCs to new ones with free PCmover Express

While it is clear to tech savvy users how to best transfer files from an old computer to a new one, it is something that less tech savvy users often have problems with.

It is usually the case that you want to take some files with you when you buy a new computer or build one from scratch.

Maybe it is photos, programming projects, videos or documents. The question that comes to mind often is how; how do you get the files from the old system to the new?

There are multiple options for that that vary in how comfortable and time consuming they are. One easy option may be to connect both systems to the same computer network and move files this way.

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Other options include using cloud storage, copying files to an external hard drive or even burning them to DVD.

Microsoft teamed up with Laplink to provide users with an easy to use program for that task.

PCmover Express has been designed to move files from old Windows systems, starting with Windows XP, to new devices running Windows 8.1 or Windows 10.

Note: Please note that you need to enter a valid email address during setup and register during the process. It is also interesting to note that the program runs well on Windows 8.1 and 10 systems.

The program walks you through the process using an on-screen wizard. It displays a checklist on start which highlights the process and things you should do prior to starting the transfer.

PCmover Express works by connecting both devices, the old and new PC, to the same network which can be wired or wireless.

Install the program on both devices and click on the next button on the source device (the old one with the data that you want to moved).

pcmover express

Select whether this is the old or new PC on the next screen to continue.


Select WiFi or Wired Network on the next screen. The two other options displayed on the page, Laplink Ethernet Cable or Laplink USB Cable require special cables that you need to purchase.

pcmover wired wifi network

You are then prompted to run PCmover on the destination PC. There you need to register an account before you can proceed and select the PC name after selecting the desired connection method.

Information about files on the old PC are transferred to the new one which may take a moment depending on their quantity. The analysis checks all connected hard drives automatically and provides you with detailed options when it comes to which files are transferred and which are not.

pcmover files

The following options are provided:

  • User Account Selection: Select which user accounts you want to transfer to the new PC.
  • Drive Selections: Select drives you want to transfer to the new computer. This is done by adding drives as folders to a hard drive of the new computer.
  • File Filters: Use these to exclude file types from being transferred. You may want to block temporary files for instance.
  • Folder Filters: Block folders from being transferred.

PCmover Express does not warn you at this stage if destination drives have less free storage space than needed to transfer all data. This happens after the configuration stage which is not ideal considering that you may need to go back and make adjustments if source files exceed the free space on the destination PC.


PCmover Express is an easy to use program to transfer files from an old Windows PC to a new device running Windows 8.1 or 10. The program has a couple of usability issues that make the process less intuitive as it could be but overall it is an easy way to move files between PCs.


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Move files from old Windows PCs to new ones with free PCmover Express


Martin Brinkmann


Microsoft partnered up with Laplink to provide PC users with a free copy of PCmover Express to move files from an old Windows PC to a new one.

About Martin Brinkmann

Martin Brinkmann is a journalist from Germany who founded Ghacks Technology News Back in 2005. He is passionate about all things tech and knows the Internet and computers like the back of his hand. You can follow Martin on Facebook, Twitter or Google+

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