Buying a new PC or notebook can be great, it's new, fresh and faster than your old one but there is something important missing: all your stuff.

You can spend ages re-installing all your programs and copying files over but with Laplink PCmover you can take the easy option and copy everything you need in one handy session.

The main selling point for Laplink seems to be that it is compatible with Windows Vista, so if you’ve bought a new PC with the new OS, then this is the ideal product.

The boxed version costs £40 (inc. VAT), which isn’t too bad a price to pay and you do get a USB cable to make the transfer easier. However, if you’re PC or notebook is networked, you won’t need the cable so we’d suggest just opting for the download version, which is only £35 (inc. VAT).

The first bugbear we found with the software is that the asking price is for a once-only transfer, so you’ll need to pay a top-up fee if you need to migrate more than once.

The interface is a simple wizard driven, so you don’t need to know too much about how such things work to get the job done. The length of time to carry out the transfer will naturally depend on how many files and programs you’re moving.

Once you’ve started PCmover you’ll find that it allows you to transfer everything you need. Programs, files and even how you set up your desktop, including wallpaper and screensavers, will be transferred. So, once you made the move you’ll be able to carry on just as before.

The one big problem with the tool was that it doesn’t discriminate with what it transfers, so all you programs will be moved over. It would have been better if there was a checklist so you could choose what you want to move. The solution is to remove any programs from your old machine before you run the transfer.

Programs with serial numbers and any files that come with digital rights management will need to be re-assigned after the transfer.

On the plus side, it doesn’t move over any system drivers, as they won’t be compatible on your new system. It’s not all good news, as tools such as anti-virus and spyware won’t be transferred so you’ll need to re-install and set those up yourself.

If you decide you don’t want the move once you’ve carried it out, there is an Undo applet that will strip the changes out. While this is a nice safety net, we’re not sure how many people will actually use it.

Verdict

Laplink PCMover is a quick and easy way to move all your old programs and files onto a new Vista computer.

It’s not without its flaws but it does exactly as is expected of it and does it with a degree of speed, which makes the asking price more than acceptable.