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Get to know third-party Windows 10 migration tools

IT professionals should look to third-party migration tools during a transition to Windows 10 to provide any features that the native Windows migration tools do not.

Microsoft provides Windows 10 migration tools to help IT professionals transition from older Windows versions, but there are also numerous third-party tools they can use.

Microsoft's tools, including the Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit, which helps with data recovery and automation for redeploying desktops, provide a strong baseline for IT pros to build on. Many organizations require additional support for the migration process, however, so IT professionals must know the various third-party Windows 10 migration tools they can use during their transition to Windows 10.

EaseUS Todo PCTrans

EaseUS Todo PCTrans is an application that backs up files, applications and settings and restores them to another PC.

In the case of a Windows 10 migration, Todo PCTrans allows IT to back up a copy of a pre-migration Windows desktop. The software can then restore the old desktop's files, applications and other data to a Windows 10 desktop. Todo PCTrans works with Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10, as well as any version of Windows Server later than Windows Server 2003.

A Todo PCTrans Professional level license only allows IT to use the software on two PCs with a price tag of $49.95. Large organizations would be better off with the $399 Technician license, which allows IT to use the software on an unlimited basis.

Laplink Software Inc. PCmover Professional

Laplink PCmover's primary purpose is to transfer files and settings to a new PC, but the software can also migrate full desktops to Windows 10.

PCmover's primary purpose is to transfer files and settings to a new PC, but the software can also migrate full desktops to Windows 10.

Laplink offers several versions of the software, but IT departments looking for Windows 10 migration tools for their entire deployment should consider the Professional edition at $59.95. IT administrators should also consider the Enterprise edition, which has pricing that varies based on the deployment. The Professional edition is useful for performing a single migration, whereas the Enterprise edition is licensed for multiple PCs.

Laplink also offers a low-cost Express edition for $14.95, but the Express edition lacks the ability to perform in-place Windows upgrades, to restore an old PC image to a new PC or to transfer applications.

Tranxition Software Migration Manager for Windows 10

Tranxition's Migration Manager for Windows 10 automates desktop migration from Windows XP, Windows 7 and Windows 8 to Windows 10. Migration Manager can transfer user profiles, printer identities, recently used document lists, Outlook files and settings, documents, and more to Windows 10.

Migration Manager for Windows 10 has two features that really stand out from some of the competing products. First, Migration Manager for Windows 10 can also tackle application upgrades. The software can, for example, upgrade Microsoft Office and can also perform cross-version migrations of some third-party applications, such as Adobe Acrobat, which native Windows 10 migration tools cannot do.

The second standout feature is scripting for zero-touch operations, which run highly automated scripts that can migrate thousands of desktops based on a single set of commands and without IT oversight.

Windows 10 Migration Accelerator

Like some of its competitors, Ivanti Windows 10 Migration Accelerator moves user profiles and settings from a user's old PC to his Windows 10 device.

One aspect of this tool that separates it from other Windows 10 migration tools is that it puts users in control of when the upgrade happens. A user can simply select the option to start the upgrade when he is ready. The software's colorful dashboard interface can help administrators keep track of how many PCs they can migrate, how many are not yet ready to migrate and how many migrations they have completed.

Windows 10 Migration Accelerator allows for zero-touch migrations, and IT pros can use the software to create templates they can use in the migration process. The templates extrapolate everything from the OS, thereby reducing the number of images IT must maintain. Ivanti does not publish pricing for Windows 10 Migration Accelerator.

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