Re-writing Former Discussion...Maybe to be Better Understood.

@capirani (1841)
United States
November 30, 2008 2:54pm CST
Okay, I asked previously about how to transfer data from a desktop to a laptop. I got lots of supposedly simple solutions, however there were no instructions. Isn't that the point of asking a how to question? To get the instructions? Anyway, I am reposting the discussion and trying to word it in a different way so maybe it will be better understood and maybe I can get the help I need. A friend of mine has a computer that the hard drive is almost shot. She does not have a CD burner in that computer. She has a lot of files she wants to save before the hard drive goes. She has extra hard drives that she will eventually put on this computer once she has transferred the data. She knows how to do that part, but not how to transfer the data from one hard drive to another. We thought maybe she could transfer it to my laptop, then I could burn CD's or DVD's with the data so she will be able to have it saved. Another way would be to transfer it to one of her extra hard drives. The question is: HOW? I don't need suggestions that merely say, go buy something and transfer. I need step by step instructions as to how to transfer. What kind of hookup is needed? What do you use to hook up the one hard drive to the other one, especially if it isn't in a computer? What do you use to hook up one computer to another? Additional problems here, is that there is no money available to buy anything. Possibly something very very cheap could be purchased, but it would have to be very cheap. Like not more than a few dollars. She has more than one computer of her own as well that she could transfer the data from one to the other. She does NOT have the internet. I do if she ended up using my laptop or bringing her computer to my house. But only for one computer, not both. Please do not bother responding if you do not give the step by step instructions or location of where I can get them. I got plenty of suggestions in the previous post. Please remember, that I am a dummy when it comes to these kinds of things, plus I need to be able to print out the instructions so she can follow them when she gets what she needs for the task. Thanks
3 responses
@coolseeds (3921)
• United States
30 Nov 08
If you want exact instructions then you should also give the specs of both computers as well as operating systems. The easiest way would be to go buy a zip drive that connects to a usb port. They are not expensive. If you can't buy one then find someone who will let you borrow theirs. Several hours will be wasted any other way because saving everything onto a zip drive and then transferring it onto a laptop is going to take long enough. It is drag and drop. There aren't very many questions to answer. But feel free to ask if you have any.
@capirani (1841)
• United States
1 Dec 08
Okay, maybe this is a dumb question....but everyone keeps saying drag and drop...but how do you know where to drag from and drop to? Everyone keeps thinking this is something I should know. LOL I guess I am a dummy about it.
@coolseeds (3921)
• United States
1 Dec 08
Drag and drop is simply that. You highlight the files you want to move and drag them to the folder where you want them. An example would be if you saved a picture file to your desktop but you wanted in your my documents folder. You would select the file and drag it to your my documents folder and drop it. I can't tell you exact without knowing exactly what hard ware you have on your computer. Your floppy drive is probably A:, C: is probably your main hard drive, D: is probably your disk drive. If this is how your pc is set up then the zip drive would be E:. But I don't know because I'm not the one who set up your pc. I'm not trying to be rude just informative. So do you see how it is impossible for someone to explain the exact procedure without knowing the set up of your pc. So get the zip drive. Then open up my computer and look and the drive letters. A: C: D: E: what ever is there. Then insert the zip drive into the usb port. Now locate the new letter assigned to the zip drive. Then drag and drop the files to it. If you have more questions feel free to ask.
@capirani (1841)
• United States
2 Dec 08
Okay, I guess I didn't get the point across. I know how to drag and drop. But what I don't understand is what will I be seeing on the screen to drag from and to. You have to understand I have not done anything like this before, and I won't be doing it anyway. I want all the bases covered so that my friend will know what she has to do. I do not understand how it is going to appear on the screen.
@stealthy (8188)
• United States
30 Nov 08
I think I would just use an external hard drive that connects by a USB cable. It all depends on what you want to spend and how much time you have. You can get a 250 gig drive for under $100 quite often on sale. Alternatively you could use a small travel drive of 4 or 8 gigs which are even cheaper but would take a lot of transfers. These external USB drives are all plug and play if you have computers that are less than I would guess now ten years old or maybe even more. So you would just copy and paste file, folders or whatever to them and then from them to the other computer.
@capirani (1841)
• United States
1 Dec 08
She already has the extra hard drive. Will any usb cable work? Such as the one I use for my printer? And will a regular extra hard drive work the same way one of those externals will? It would not have any power supply I don't think.
@stealthy (8188)
• United States
1 Dec 08
If the extra hard drive she has is not one made to connect by a USB cable than you can't use my suggestion. You can buy external large capacity USB harddrives in both powered and unpowered. The one that I have is 250 GB, has to be powered and cost about $80 on sale when I got it over a year ago. Small, what are sometimes called zip drives, require no power and may cost about $20 for 8 GB, I'm not too sure about that price though. O'K I have read your discussion more thoroughly and I think the best thing to do is to get a really cheap zip drive 2 or 4 GB, put some data on it from her computer, transfer it to yours (both computers should have the autoplay feature to use the zip drives I think, ask at the store), erase what is on the zip and repeat until it is all done, then install the new harddrive in her computer and use the zip to transfer the data back. This may take some time and before getting a zip drive the largest file size should be checked to make sure it will fit on the drive since splitting files may be something you would not want to get into. Just remeber that for example a 4 GB zip does not hold a full 4 GB, there is some overhead; again hopefully they could answer how large the overhead is at the store. This all assumes that she and you have computers with USB connections. This would be time consuming depending on the size of the zip that is affordable, at a place like Staples or OfficeMax or Office Depot (look for sales) and on the amount of data. But I think you would probably have to buy more expensive cables and other things and have to learn a lot more to make a direct computer to computer transfer. Good luck.
1 person likes this
@stealthy (8188)
• United States
1 Dec 08
O'K I have looked at the other answers and the one thing that is missing form you is the information on your friend's computer. Some good answers have been given for a general case but without the specs. on her computer, no one can really give the kind of answer you want. Concerning her computer: 1. What kind, make, model, age, etc. is it? 2. What is the operating system? 3. How old is it? 4. You say it does not have a CD burner, does it have a CD drive (read only)? 5. Does it have USB ports (without a USB port, my suggestiongs above will not work)? Also, you said she knows how to install the new harddrive in which case she should be able to add it as an additional harddrive if there is a slot for it and follow the suggestions given by someone else above.
• United States
30 Nov 08
I suggest if you do not know how to properly configure computer hardware you take it to a techie, but if you know the inner workings of the hardware you could simply add another hard drive to the BUS connection. By doing this, the next time you start the computer the new hard drive could be read and you could essentially copy and paste the files you want onto the new hard drive. However, I would suggest you format the new Hard Drive and create a Windows partition prior to copying the files over. Simply, take to a techie or install windows on new Hard drive, add new Hard drive to Bus w/ Old hard drive still plugged in, copy & paste.
@capirani (1841)
• United States
1 Dec 08
As I mentioned, there is no money to be spent on this project, so taking it to a techie is out of the question. Besides that, all the so called techies in this area are not trustworthy as far as doing a good or right job on the computers. They do not have good reputations around here. The other idea is a good one and I will check with her if she knows how to put the second hard drive in her computer. Thanks!