Migrate from XP to Windows 7 with USMT
Article by George Norman
On 05 May 2009
USMT (short for User State Migration Tool) is a handy piece of software that one can use to migrate their files and settings from Windows XP to Windows 7. Now that Windows 7 RC (Release Candidate) is out there and publicly available for download, some of you that are still using XP might consider switching to Windows 7.

“You can use Microsoft® Windows® User State Migration Tool (USMT) 3.0 to migrate user files and settings during large deployments of Microsoft Windows XP and Microsoft Windows Vista® operating systems. USMT captures desktop, and application settings, as well as user accounts and users' files, and then migrates them to a new Windows installation. Using USMT can help you improve and simplify your migration process. You can use USMT for both side-by-side and wipe-and-load migrations. If you are only upgrading your operating system, USMT is not needed,” explains TechNet.


As you may already be aware, upgrading from XP to Windows 7 RC, or the upcoming Windows 7 RTM, which will presumably be released on the 23rd of October according to Acer, is not exactly an option. There are upgrade paths in place, but from Windows Vista to Windows 7, not from XP to Windows 7. As a matter of fact, Microsoft made it quite clear that it would much rather have you upgrade from Vista to Windows 7 RC, rather than from Windows 7 Beta to Windows 7 RC. The reasoning behind such a request is that you “experience real-world setup and provide us real-world telemetry” – especially since as a Windows 7 Beta tester you provided the development team with precious telemetry.

The bottom line is this: if you want to switch from XP to Windows 7 and want to migrate your files and settings, then use User State Migration Tool – a detailed video on how to use it has been made available here. If you don’t want to use USMT, just perform a fresh install. And if you really don’t want to get Windows 7 RC but would like to get your XP to look like Win7, then take a look at Seven Transformation Pack.

Tags: Microosft, Windows 7 RC, Release Candidate, USMT, User State Migration Tool
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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