03:05 PM

Microsoft Preps XP-To-Vista App Migration Tool

The Windows Easy Transfer Companion will let users migrate files, settings, and apps to Vista.

Microsoft will unveil a tool to help Windows XP users migrate not only files and settings, but also applications to Windows Vista when the operating system launches, a company worker said.

In a blog entry, Anthony Clendenen, a Systems Management Server (SMS) engineer at Microsoft, announced that the "Windows Easy Transfer Companion" will go into public beta when Vista ships in early 2007. The add-on to Vista's integrated " Windows Easy Transfer," the tool "supports transfers via network connection or the Easy Transfer Cable and eliminates the need to manually reinstall programs when upgrading to a new PC," Clendenen said.

Earlier this month, Microsoft touted the Companion to users who had volunteered to take part in Vista install tests at the developer's Redmond, Wash. campus. The Easy Transfer Cable, the company said then, would be sold separately by cable makers. The USB cable will have "a chip in the middle that allows it to transfer data between two PCs, and is specifically designed to support Windows Easy Transfer and Windows Easy Transfer Companion," said Microsoft.

Microsoft has released several tools to assist migration to Windows Vista, including an application compatibility kit that identifies applications that will run on Vista and tags those that need further testing or modification.

By Microsoft's schedule Windows Vista is to release to corporations next month, and to consumers in January 2007.

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