How to transfer files between two or more computers with Microsoft Windows operating systems you ask? Some computer users like to transfer files between two Microsoft Windows computers using “Files and Settings Transfer Wizard”. This often requires using a direct cable connection between the two computers with a serial cable.
Both computers must have a serial port and transfer times can be slow, especially when transferring larger amounts of data. Another option with quicker data transfer rates is using the universal serial bus ports on the computers and with the help of a special transfer cable. This might not be as straight forward as you think as you might have to use Microsoft Window’s easy transfer tool, which has since been deprecated and is NOT available in Microsoft Windows 10 operating system.
Other options would be to transfer your data via a universal serial bus flash drive, external universal serial bus hard drive, or setting up a simple home network with your source and destination computer(s) plugged into a hub, router, or switch. Looking into what hardware or software is needed before attempting to transfer your data is highly recommended. This could come with additional obstacles such as trying to transfer data from a desktop computer to a laptop computer.
If you have time, I think it would be more productive if you plan this project ahead of time. There are many factors to take into consideration. To me as a computer technician, using a small local network is the easiest and least time consuming actually.
However, now that Microsoft likes to create changing operating systems, this can at first seem daunting. If you are in a quick bind, then using a file transfer cable or other type of storage device might save you time. In cases of an emergency where your computer is having problems then a file transfer cable might be advantageous.
If you are facing an emergency like a failing hard drive, then mucking around with a file transfer cable might put your data at risk. This is the type of situation where a universal serial bus flash drive or external hard drive could be the quickest and safest option. If you are not facing a quagmire, then I would choose the home network route, pun intended, each and every time.
A small Microsoft Windows domain network is suitable for around twenty five to thirty computers. All you have to do is place them all on the same work group. You can use Microsoft’s default “WORKGROUP” name or choose your own.
For example you could name your work group “apple”. You would just change the work group to “apple” on each Microsoft Windows computer from the default “workgroup”. Now you just need to make sure that each computer receives an internet protocol address on the same sub net.
For example you have five computers with the following Internet protocol addresses:
Now they can all talk to each other on the same small network. You can designate one of them as a file server, if you choose. This next step requires more technical knowledge. Depending on what operating system you are using, you need to make certain that “File and Printer Sharing” is enabled.
I would advise against using the newer Microsoft Windows “HomeGroup” networking feature. My experiences with this newer way to create a home network have been nothing short of a disaster. I have setup successfully small Microsoft Windows networks with just file and printer sharing enabled.
I have had a network where I had Microsoft Windows 2000, Microsoft Windows XP, Microsoft Windows Vista, Microsoft Windows 7, and Microsoft Windows computers all networked and able to access files. I made the changes to each computer outlined earlier in this blog post and made certain that file and printer sharing were enabled. I could view every computer on this small network.
Finally, you may want to take security into consideration. You may not want read and write abilities on each and every computer. This is where a small file server to me becomes advantageous.
Even two computers with one dedicated to storing files to me is productive. You want to just share the hard drive or just one folder on your file server. Then you can allow read only access or write access to just this one file folder or hard drive.
The other remaining computers on your network would then have access to this file share. Also, you can share printers in this same manner. As a matter of fact I have a Dymo Label Writer 450 networked in this manner.
Another advantage to creating a home network is that you can even remotely connect to each computer using Microsoft Windows remote desktop connection software. You can even copy files over this remote desktop connection. Now that you have your own network configured you can possibly spend less time worrying about your personal files.
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