Windows 10 and PC migration

“Microsoft is doing a lot of good things right now and we believe the launch of Windows 10 later this year will not only have a significant impact on Microsoft’s share of the market, but on the industry as a whole,” said Jean Philippe Bouchard, Research Director, Tablets at IDC. – IDC, 2015

When Windows 10 releases later this month, it is to great expectations. Unlike Windows 8, it is anticipated that existing PC users will switch much more rapidly to Windows 10. Here are a number of reasons why:

  1. Windows 10 will be more user friendly than Windows 8, including a redesigned and optimized Start menu, virtual desktops, and resizable Windows Store apps that behave more like legacy apps.
  2. Analysts predict massive conversions from XP, Vista, 7, and even 8/8.1, supported by the fact that it will be free for Win 7 and Win 8/8.1 users.
  3. Windows 10 is the real successor for Windows 7 for enterprises, with a lot of emphasis on desktops and enhancements in security, manageability, etc.
  4. Many of the improvements will be especially important to businesses, allowing them to deploy and manage PC’s running Windows 10 easier and more cost-efficient than ever.
  5. Windows 10 will launch in the second half of 2015, and it’s expected that the new operating system will not only help Microsoft to bring more users back to its platform, but it will also contribute to better PC sales as the appeal of new computers will grow significantly for customers.

So while this is great news for existing PC customers, the other big questions is:

What about new PC Sales?

“Economic and product changes will create a headwind in the short term,” IDC states in a press release, “So in 2015, only 293.1 million PCs will be sold.” – IDC, 2015

It’s a mixed bag. Analyst firm IDC® is not all that optimistic and says that, despite the arrival of Windows 10, new PC sales are still expected to decline this year. In fact, IDC has recently lowered its forecast of this year’s new PC sales, claiming that this market is expected to fall by 4.9 percent in 2015, despite the initial estimate of a 3.3 percent decline.

Windows 10 to slightly increase sales.

New PC shipments will remain moderate throughout the year, but in late 2015, the arrival of Windows 10 is expected to lead to a small increase in PC sales.

“More significant product refreshes from the likes of Intel® and Microsoft (Windows 10) will be released later in the year, shifting OEM product updates and consumer interest to later in 2015,” IDC said.

Up until now, the PC market has posted a small increase, partially thanks to more companies replacing their Windows XP systems due to the end of support in 2014. It is also because of Windows 8.1 with Bing, an operating system that’s offered either free of charge or with a very low license cost to manufacturers, with the purpose of cutting down the final price of their devices.

IDC says that the only good news for PC makers is that demand for tablets and other portable devices has dropped recently and is expected to continue going down in the upcoming months.

What does this mean for PC Migration?

All other scenarios require a “clean install” of Windows, which can be done either by reformatting the hard drive or by “over-installing” the new operating system. Both cases result in the applications, data, and settings being moved to different directories. Applications will not be registered with the new OS, which provides opportunities for our valued resellers.Windows 10 is likely to increase demand for PCs, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that everything will be perfect. And while there are many ways to migrate to a new version of Windows, few “solutions” actually allow an in-place upgrade. In particular, any remaining Windows XP users, all Windows Vista users, any 32-bit Windows 7 users, and any users remaining on Windows 8 cannot easily upgrade. There are also limitations imposed for users upgrading from a 32-bit to 64-bit in Windows 10. While users of 64-bit Windows 7 and users of Windows 8.1 will have a comparatively easier time completing an in-place upgrade to the newest OS when it’s available, it still won’t be easy.

The ideal PC migration solution:

The versions of PCmover Suite ideal for consumer and small company migrations are PCmover Professional (download only) and PCmover Ultimate (physical box, including High-Speed Transfer Cable and SafeErase). This reselling opportunity is for those with tech savvy staff to drive migrations in-house or at-home users. By purchasing multi-packs in the partner portal of these versions, partners will profit on the margin when reselling to clients

Upgrade Paths to Windows 10

Upgrading to a new version of Windows, soon to be Windows 10, usually sounds like a straightforward process:

  • Download the software (or install via a DVD/CD);
  • Run the installer, upgrade the OS;
  • Voila! Everything should be in place.

in place upgradesFor all scenarios which are not “green” it’s a different story. In particular, any remaining Windows XP users and all Windows Vista users cannot easily upgrade, and users running the 32-bit version of Windows 7/8/8.1 don’t have an easy (in-place) upgrade to the 64-bit Version of Windows 10, either.Unfortunately, it’s different. While there are many ways to migrate or upgrade to a new version of Windows, only a few options actually allow an in-place upgrade. The chart below depicts the different options available with the green boxes indicating upgrades “out of the box”.

These scenarios require a “clean” or “custom” install of Windows, which can be done either by reformatting the hard drive or by “over-installing” the new operating system. Both cases result in the applications, data, and settings being moved to different directories, and the existing applications will not work as they are not registered with the new OS.

Laplink® has created a solution with PCmover® that allows in-place upgrades. The table below indicates that all upgrade scenarios which are not supported “out of the box” are supported by PCmover.

upgrade paths

In the next blog post, we will dive deeper into the two core migration scenarios PCmover supports.

PCmover migration: hard drive image recovery

PCmover Professional and Business support all migration scenarios:

Scenario 1: Migrate to a New Machine

  • Direct peer-to peer transfer over cable or network
  • File-based transfer using storage device

Scenario 2: Upgrade an old Windows PC to Windows 10

  • Custom Windows 10 install
  • Reformatted Windows 10 install

Scenario 3: Recover directly from a hard drive or VHD

  • Physical drive restoration
  • Image file restoration (mounted as VHD)

The third scenario PCmover supports is the transfer of applications, data, and settings from an image or hard drive to a new PC.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If the organization has images of a Windows XP PC and need the image restored to a new Windows 10 PC, there are no solutions from traditional image vendors (Symantec, Acronis, Paragon, etc.) However, with the right software, one can mount the image on the new PC, but the applications and settings will not work.

PCmover’s built-in technology called “Image & Drive Assistant” takes a unique approach to this issue by being the only software that can restore an old image to a new PC without overwriting anything on the new PC. Some companies take this functionality and optimize it for their normal PC deployment: an IT service professional will manually remove the hard drive from an old computer, attach it to the proper housing component, and connect it to the new PC with a compatible cable. While it adds complexity and is usually technician-driven, this scenario offers the fastest migration, especially in cases with full high capacity drives. If a PC is unresponsive, but the hard drive is in working order, PCmover’s Image and Drive Assistant function is the only way to transfer data, settings and applications to a new Windows system.

In most cases, larger organizations comprised of over 500 PCs will have prepared an image that is put on a new PC by the IT department, or as part of the factory process at the OEM or service provider.

Using PCmover makes these transfer processes easy, and the migration is completed in record time. Beyond end users, these are all optimal migration scenarios for an IT service provider to utilize for business customers, and resellers to use to market to IT departments.

You can watch a video about it here.

PCmover migration: in place upgrade

PCmover Professional and Business support all migration scenarios:

Scenario 1: Migrate to a New Machine

  • Direct peer-to peer transfer over cable or network
  • File-based transfer using storage device

Scenario 2: Upgrade an old Windows PC to Windows 10

  • Custom Windows 10 install
  • Reformatted Windows 10 install

Scenario 3: Recover directly from a hard drive or VHD

  • Physical drive restoration
  • Image file restoration (mounted as VHD)

In the second scenario, PCmover supports in-place upgrades where the new operating system is installed on top of an old Windows version. Microsoft does not support in-place upgrades from Windows XP or Vista. It also does not support an upgrade path from a 32-bit machine to 64-bit. It also recommends a complex re-installation of applications, data, and settings. This reinstallation is often too costly for an organization, especially if they must repeat this process many times, because they have a number of PCs that were purchased in the last 4 years but are fast enough to handle Windows 10.

This built-in technology in PCmover, the “Upgrade Assistant” tool, is the only technology to support this type of scenario. After Windows 10 is installed as a custom install (no formatting of the hard drive), PCmover’s Upgrade Assistant function can restore the applications, data, and settings from the old Windows directory and apply them to the new OS environment.

While PCmover can perform in-place upgrades, many customers prefer to “export” all data, settings and applications to a network location or external drive. This allows the PC to be updated with a full image, which includes the preferred settings and new applications of the organization, before the data, settings and applications are imported again. If no image is needed, organizations can use the Upgrade Assistant function of PCmover to preserve data, settings and applications on a new Windows version.

You can watch a video of how an in-place upgrade to Windows 10 works here.

In the next blog post, we will explore the third and final migration scenario PCmover supports.

PCmover migration: PC to PC

PCmover Professional and Business support three migration scenarios:

Scenario 1: Migrate to a New Machine

  • Direct peer-to peer transfer over cable or network
  • File-based transfer using storage device

Scenario 2: Upgrade an old Windows PC to Windows 10

  • Custom Windows 10 install
  • Reformatted Windows 10 install

Scenario 3: Recover directly from a hard drive or VHD

  • Physical drive restoration
  • Image file restoration (mounted as VHD)

The first scenario is the most common scenario where you deploy to a new PC and replace an existing desktop, moving the data, settings and applications from the old to the new PC through the network. Some companies prefer a USB cable to reduce the traffic on the network or for offline migrations.

PCmover® Professional and Business editions make the migration process effective and cost-efficient. PCmover is an OS-independent transfer tool that allows users to migrate from Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, and 8.1 to Windows 10. PCmover transfers all selected applications, data, and settings to a new PC, including user accounts, applications’ environments, applications’ add-ons, background pictures, favorites, and more.

You can watch a PCmover tutorial video here.

In our next post, we will talk about PCmover’s second supported migration scenario.

Getting to Windows 10

Of the greater than 100 different ways to move to Windows 10 from Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, and 8.1, less than 20 are allowed by Microsoft to implement an in-place upgrade.

This means that very few of the scenarios keep your applications, data and settings “in-place”– in other words, still installed on your computer, and in the same location as before.

The debut of Windows 10 is likely to have the effect of increasing the demand for PCs with a mouse and keyboard. Yet even in mature regions, which are actually strong markets such as the United States, PC sales are still expected to drop by 5.1 percent this year, despite the arrival of Windows 10. Microsoft’s announcement that upgrades to Windows 10 would be free for the first year for all Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 users also likely had the effecet of discouraging new PC sales. With such an easy option to upgrade directly to the new OS without updating hardware, the first year of the Windows 10 release is likely not going to see huge jumps in new PC sales.

One challenge will remain for users upgrading to Windows 10 for free: while there are many ways to migrate data and applications PC to PC, few scenarios actually support an in-place upgrade without erasing the old data, or overwriting the new OS. For any remaining Windows XP users, all Windows Vista users, any 32-bit Windows 7 users, and any users remaining on Windows 8, they cannot easily upgrade to the new OS without purchasing third party software.

While users of 64-bit Windows 7 and users of Windows 8.1 will have a comparatively easier time, it still won’t be a straightforward process.

All other scenarios require a “clean install” of Windows which can be done either by reformatting the hard drive or by “over-installing” the new operating system. Both cases result in the applications, data, and settings being moved to different directories and the applications are not registered with the new OS.

If you want to know how to complete an in-place upgrade to Windows 10 with Laplink’s PCmover software, watch this video here.

PCmover Supports Migrations to Windows 10

Laplink is continuing its previous, successful relationship with Microsoft. Together Laplink and Microsoft are collaborating to ensure that PCmover users have a great experience when using PCmover in an upgrade scenario. From what we understand (and have tested) right now, it’s safe to say that PCmover will support migrations to the following editions of Windows 10:

  • Windows 10 Home
  • Windows 10 Pro
  • Windows 10 Enterprise
  • Windows 10 Education

The easiest way to enjoy the latest Windows release would, of course, be to buy a new PC loaded with the new OS and to use PCmover Professional to migrate all the applications, data, and settings from your old PC to this new PC. But PCmover also supports in-place upgrades to Windows 10, and transfers all the old OS’s files, settings, profiles, and applications without overwriting the new operating system.

For standard hardware refreshes and as-needed PC replacements, PCmover can operate across a corporate network, cross-over Ethernet cable, Laplink USB cable, or a portable storage device, offering a flexible, time-saving and simple solution for automating the end-to-end process.

Windows 10 will release on July 29th this year

It is clear that its release will be to great expectations. Unlike Windows 8, it is anticipated that existing PC users will switch much more rapidly to Windows 10. Here are a number of reasons why:

  • Windows 10 will be more user friendly than Windows 8, including a redesigned Start menu, virtual desktops, and re-sizable Windows Store apps that behave more like legacy apps.
  • Many of the improvements will be especially important to businesses, allowing them to deploy & manage PC’s running Windows 10 more easily and cost efficient than ever.
  • Analyst predict massive conversions from Windows XP, Vista, 7, and even 8/8.1 (supported by the fact that it will be free for Win 7 and Win 8/8.1 users.)

PC users ready to migrate or upgrade to the newest operating system by Microsoft should consider Laplink’s PCmover software to complete this upgrade quickly and easily.