Migrating Toward Easier Data Transfers

By Patricia Fusco | Posted February 24, 2003
Miramar Systems released the latest iteration of its Desktop DNA Professional data migration program this week. The software enables individual users and small businesses to effortlessly transfer applications settings, desktop settings, custom templates, address books, Web page bookmarks, and other personalized data from one Windows-based computer system to another. And you don't need specialized IT knowledge to complete the task — the software automatically extracts the correct files and settings and relocates them to the new system.

Desktop DNA Professional 4.5 retails for $39 and supports data migration either over a network or directly between two PCs. For $49, you can pick up the Desktop DNA Migration Kit, which includes the application plus a high-speed Ethernet crossover cable.

Crossing Over
After using the same desktop computer for three years, Richard Sanders, the owner of a small investment firm, made the leap and purchased a new laptop. He was eager to moving off from the older desktop computer running Windows 98 to a new laptop running Windows XP.

Sanders Investments, LLC is a small company that does not have the luxury of staffing an IT department. So Sanders set out in search of an easy to use, inexpensive migration tool to transfer his custom settings and personalized files and documents from the desktop to the laptop.

"I consider myself to be a fairly knowledgeable computer user," said Sanders. "But getting my settings and preferences from point A to point B is something totally new to me."

Sander's biggest concern was ensuring that his Microsoft Outlook settings, files and address books, as well as his Microsoft Word and Excel templates were transferred to his new laptop.

"My laptop came preloaded with almost every application that I need," explained Sanders. "But to have had to manually find my Word and Excel templates or worse, have to recreate them, that would be a painful and time-consuming task."

With its user-friendly interface to guide him through the process, Desktop DNA Professional from Miramar Systems proved to be the ideal migration software solution for Sanders.

Sanders chose to perform a custom, real-time migration to stream his old computer information to his new laptop. While the default settings of Desktop DNA Professional would have transferred most of his pertinent personal data, Sanders wanted to switch from McAfee Virus to Symantec's Norton AntiVirus and he also wanted to move his browser from Netscape to Microsoft Internet Explorer. With Desktop DNA professional, he simply deselected the applications so neither program would be migrated to his new laptop.

"I had thought that I would have to uninstall both of these programs prior to the migration," said Sanders. "Being able to easily exclude them from the migration is a great feature that saves me the hassle of having to do the work myself."

To complete the process, Sanders chose to have the entire contents of his "My Documents" folder migrated. With a click of button, Desktop DNA Professional began the migration process. "Desktop DNA Professional worked perfectly and the migration of data went very smoothly," Sanders said.

Toshiba Buys It
Toshiba was so impressed by Miramar System's data migration solution, that the notable notebook computer maker is selling the Desktop DNA Professional Migration Kit at ShopToshiba.com.

"With Desktop DNA Professional v.4.5 and the Migration Kit, we provide our customers the ability to automatically transfer their DNA from their old machine to their new Toshiba notebook," said Doug Sash, senior operations manager at Shop Toshiba. "This saves tremendous time and allows them to get up and running on their new Toshiba without downtime or the painful process of manually moving files and reconfiguring settings."

When it comes to small businesses, experienced PC users can customize certain migration parameters to meet the unique needs of employees. Desktop DNA Professional offers a range of flexible functions that delivers an enterprise level experience to home offices and small businesses.

"Enabling small business owners to manage, migrate, and replicate today's increasingly complex desktop environments significantly improves their productivity without proportionally increasing management time and costs," said Mike Sheffey, vice president of sales at Miramar. "For small businesses in particular, Desktop DNA Professional and the new migration kit free time and scarce resources to focus on core business tasks."

To Do Or Undo
Desktop DNA Professional supports two different migration methods to fit any situation, be it moving to Windows 2000 or XP, purchasing a new PC, or even as a desktop back-up and recovery system. Just don't expect Desktop DNA Professional to move entire applications — this function is reserved for its enterprise-class edition.

Mike Walker, Miramar Systems director of marketing, said there are other data migration solutions available, but none of them perform as quickly and efficiently as Desktop DNA Professional.

"There are other solutions in SMB space. But one system grabs everything — whether you want it or not — and another only offers real-time migration," said Walker. "Desktop DNA Professional performs deferred migrations that let you save your DNA file to a CD-ROM or Zip disk."

What's the best thing that Desktop DNA Professional can do that others can't? It can undo an entire data transfer. Desktop DNA Professional creates a self-extracting undo file at the time of the migration. If you're not happy with the data transfer after you've completed it, simply point and click to restore your original setup.

Pricing and System Requirements
Desktop DNA Professional and the Desktop DNA Professional Migration Kit are available direct from Miramar Systems or its resellers. A single runs $39; the migration kit retails for $49; 0 to 99 licenses are $27 per seat. The Desktop DNA Professional Migration Kit is also available at ShopToshiba.com.

Desktop DNA can be used on PCs with AMD Athlon/Duron or Intel Pentium processors or higher, operating on Windows 95, or higher, including ME, 2000 or XP. Additional system requirements include 24 MB RAM, 20 MB of hard drive space and a CD-ROM drive.

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