In-Depth

Editor's Choice: NT 4.0 to Windows Migration

<b>Winner: </b>Tranxition Software Personality Tranxport Professional 3.0<br> <br> <b>Honorable Mention:</b> <a href="#xpress">Altiris eXpress Migration Suite</a>

Personality Tranxport Professional 3.0 From $39.95 for one user to $7,897.50 for 250 users  Tranxition Corp.; 503-291-6400; www.tranxition.com

How many desktops do you have to migrate? I’m betting more than one. Are they all used by the same person? Probably not. Each computer on your network has its own personality created over months and years, and the biggest request I receive from users during migration is to have the settings from the old computer applied to the new one. This has been a major migration challenge for IT personnel. Often it isn’t done, with users left to re-create the settings manually. Besides being a hassle, this can hurt productivity if users spend more time searching for and implementing settings than they do at their jobs.

Tranxition’s Personality Tranxport Professional 3.0 (PTPro) is a migration tool that provides an easy-to-use graphical interface to capture, store and restore the unique personality of each user’s computer automatically, along with powerful functions to migrate hundreds or thousands of computers. PTPro is installed in two parts: The server components are installed at a central network location, and a small client from the central location to each computer to be migrated.

Tranxition Personality Transport 2.0
Tranxition's Personality Transport Professional allows administrators to create extraction templates to ease migration. (Click image to view larger version.)

Once installed, PTPro extracts personality information—desktop, Internet, e-mail, network and application settings, for example—from the computer and stores it in the central PTPro network location. To simplify the extraction of application settings, PTPro includes configuration information for many of today’s most popular applications. In addition to the personality settings, PTPro can extract document and data files for migration. The extraction can be done manually (by the user employing the simple graphical interface), or an administrator can create a custom configuration file to automate the settings.

Tranxition’s Personality Transport Professional 3.0 is a solid, easy-to-use migration tool for Windows that provides a simple graphical interface for one-off migrations and an advanced command-line interface for administrators to drive enterprise-wide migrations. With the extensive collection of Windows, network and application settings in existence, PTPro will meet both user and administrative migration needs.

Honorable Mention
Altiris eXpress Migration Suite
$29 for 10-99 nodes; $25 for 100-499 nodes
Altiris
888-252-5551, 801-226-8500
www.altiris.com

Another good migration tool to consider is Altiris eXpress Migration Suite. Altiris provides a server-based console where migration-related tasks can be created, scheduled and deployed by administrators. PC Transplant Pro, a component of the software, is a wizard-based migration tool that captures user settings and allows you to create a Personality Package that can be run on the new PC migrating your settings. It also includes a disk imaging utility that eliminates the need for third-party tools to create the base image for desktop deployments.

About the Author

Stewart Cawthray, MCSE, ITIL Service Manager, is an IT management consultant for Hewlett-Packard.

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