With the excitement around the public release of Windows 7 this week, I’m getting lots of questions about the best way to upgrade systems from Windows XP to Windows 7.  Here are the best options:

Easy Transfer – a great tool for end users to migrate their data, settings, preferences, favorites, etc. Note that there is a new version of Easy Transfer for Windows 7. It is much faster than the first version, written for Windows Vista.  Easy Transfer is included on the Windows 7 DVD, but you may also download it from this web site - http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/products/features/windows-easy-transfer

USMT – User State Migration Tool – this tool is recommended for an IT Pro to use for migrating other users.  USMT is part of the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT)

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/dd671583.aspx

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=2274c6c3-bc26-45d5-a32c-f6f44f980518 – (download the video here)

http://edge.technet.com/Media/User-State-Migration-with-Windows-7/

MDT – Microsoft Deployment Toolkit

MDT is the recommended process and set of tools for automating desktop and server deployment.  You can do an automated “Light Touch” installation by using MDT and the tools included in Windows Server 2008.  If you add System Center Configuration Manager to the mix, you can do a totally automated “Zero Touch” installation of Windows 7 – or any software application.

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?DisplayLang=en&FamilyID=3bd8561f-77ac-4400-a0c1-fe871c461a89