Your old laptop stopped working.  You’ve just bought a replacement laptop and now you are wondering how to get your valuable pictures and personal data transferred from the old hard drive to the new laptop.

1. Get a USB external hard drive case. IDE or SATA based on the type of drive you have. Cost between $5-$10.

2. Remove the drive from the old laptop.

3. Install the have drive into external drive case.

4. Connect the USB drive to the new laptop.

5. In Windows the AutoPlay box will pop up on the screen with options on how you want to access the files on the drive.

6. Select Open folder to view files.

7. For Windows XP, locate the Doucuments and Settings folder. Now open the folder that matches your user name on your old laptop.  You’ll find the My Documents, My Pictures, My Music, Desktop, and Favorites folders plus many more. The ones mentioned here are the most important.

8. For Windows Vista and Windows 7, Locate the Users folder. Now open the folder that matches your user name on your old laptop. You’ll find the My Documents, My Pictures, My Music, Desktop, and Favorites folders plus many more. The ones mentioned here are the most important.

9. Now you’ve located the files all you have to do is copy them to your new laptop.  (As hard drive size gets larger people stores more data.  Now would be a good time to go through them and clean out the useless files. Don’t delete anything off the old hard drive until you are sure you got everything you need off the drive.)