Migrating From Windows XP To Windows Vista

by on May 30, 2007

Q: I am in the process of buying a new laptop. My new laptop uses Vista and my old laptop uses XP. I want to transfer my favorites in IE6 and my documents to my new computer. How do I do this?

A: When you are transferring your personal information and documents from one PC to another, the first thing you need to do is make sure you know where all of your data is saved. In Windows XP, most applications prompt you to save information into your My Documents folder, but not all applications default to that folder when you are saving files. It is a good idea to browse through your hard drive and make sure that all of your personal files have been moved to the My Documents folder.

In order to back up your bookmarks from Internet Explorer 6:

  1. Click “File” > “Import and Export” > “Next”
  2. Click “Export Favorites” and click “Next
  3. Name the bookmarks file or accept the default of bookmarks.htm and save the file to your “My Documents” folder.

Once you have located all of your documents, you need to determine how much data you have. If you right-click on the My Documents folder and click on the General tab you will see the size of the folder. The amount of data you have will determine the best way for you to copy your data from one machine to the other. The quickest way to transfer your data would be to copy it to a USB Flash Drive or an External Hard Drive, then attach it to the new PC and copy the data over. If you do not have an external drive, you can burn a CD or DVD with all of your data on it and copy the data from it when you place it in the new PC. The added bonus of burning a CD is that you have an instant backup of your data from your old PC that you can save as an archive.

Once you have copied all of your information to the new PC, to import your bookmarks into Internet Explorer 7:

  1. Click “Add to Favorites” > “Import and Export
  2. Click “Next”
  3. Choose “Import Favorites” and click “Next
  4. Navigate to the bookmarks file you copied over from your old PC (which should have been in your My Documents folder), and click “Next
  5. Click “Finish”

Now you should have your data from your old PC copied over to your new PC and your bookmarks have been imported into Internet Explorer

12 Responses to “Migrating From Windows XP To Windows Vista”

    Thank you so much. You made a complicated issue seem very simple.



    Dear Sir Please help me. I transfered my favourites to google bookmark and now i want to shift them back as i have deleted my favourites mistakenly.

    thanks for your help.


    ‘cept this doesn’t work. Windoze fister / IE 7 doesn’t recognise any favorites format except its own Bookmarks format.



    I am not sure why you would say IE does not recognize other formats. IE will, in fact, import bookmarks from just about any browser out there be it FireFox, Opera, other version of IE, etc without a problem.


    I can’t seem to follow your instructions.
    Exported a bookmark file from XP, and moved file to new PC where it is sitting on desktop.
    You say in IE7 use ‘add to favorites’ > import export . wizard starts and I select for import favorites and browse to file on desktop.

    Under Add to favorites I only get option to add url for page I am on ??
    Under IE7 File > Import Export >

    It says I have successfully completed the import export wizard … but when I click ‘finish’ it hen tells me this is not a valid bookmark file. ??
    Even though I have re-exported file several times on my XP machine, I get same error when I try to import into VISTA.

    The XP m/c uses IE6

    Do I need to delete the existing vista file first, or convert the IE6 file somehow ?


    I have the same problem – in Vista, IE 7 does not recognize the bookmark format…


    I have the same issue … export bookmarks from XP (IE 6) when I try to import them into Vista (IE7) it starts OK … but then throws it out with ‘not a valid bookmark file’


    Same issue for me (stupid MS and their habit of even making even their own s/w obsolete with new releases…) Did an export from an XP PC running IE6. e-mailed file to myself and tried to import onto an XP PC running IE7. Get “not valid bookmark file” error.

    Anyone posts a “fix” I will be back in a week to view any new responses.


    Ehhh, forget it. Am just clicking on the line items in the bookmark.htm file one at a time and adding. No big deal…


    anybody any idea on this … tried several times, but VISTA import ‘accepts’ but at the very end says it’s ‘not a valid bookmark file.
    It’s IE6 on XP machine and IE 7 on VISTA


    Hi, I had this problem and cured it by editing the bookmark file in notepad. The problem is links/folders with the same name, ie microsoft ones, so just delete those and it copied across