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I recently got a new PC which has a 64-bit Windows 7 installed. The current PC that I am using has a 32-bit Windows 7 installed.

I would like to know if there is a software that can copy all my installed programs and files in the hard disk with the 32-bit Windows 7 PC and transfer it to the newer PC's hard disk which has a 64 bit version of Windows 7. This is essentially like "cloning" a hard disk but I would like to use a 64-bit OS in the target drive, instead of also copying the 32-bit OS of the source drive.

I would like to do this so I can avoid reinstalling and reconfiguring my installed programs and files again on the new PC. If possible, I would like the new PC to work as it was in my previous PC, with the installed programs, configuration and files intact except that the OS is now 64-bit and the hard disk has a larger capacity. I have heard of programs that can clone a hard disk, but my concern is that the 32-bit Windows 7 OS will also be cloned to the new 64-bit PC.

If it is not possible to transfer my installed programs and settings like the way I described, are there software that can make it easier to migrate my installed programs, their configurations and my files from a 32-bit Windows 7 PC to a 64-bit Windows 7 PC?

I have a SATA to USB connector/adapter to copy files in the current hard disk to the newer one.
The two PCs are connected through LAN, so I can also transfer files through LAN.
Both PCs only have one hard disk.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

No, this is not possible. You can't move the registry from the one computer to another, so your applications would not work correctly.

Instead, install your applications on your new 64-bit system, and use the Windows Easy Transfer to move your data and application settings to your new machine. Easy Transfer is based on USMT, which is a powerfull migration tool big companies use to migrate people to new computers.

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Will USMT work when changing bit level? Some programs install to different folders in 64bit. – Moab Jan 3 '11 at 15:59
@Moab: Good question. The Easy Transfer FAQ only mentions that it can't migrate files from 64-bit to 32-bit. I'd expect that the filesystem layout differences (Program Files (x86), SysWOW64, etc.) are going to cause lots of problems. – afrazier Jan 3 '11 at 21:23
It works fine going from 32 to 64, just not the other way around. – Brian Jan 3 '11 at 21:39
Thanks for the clarification Brian – Moab Jan 3 '11 at 21:57
You can't go from 64 bit to 32 because you cannot efficiently simulate the 64 bit environment in a 32 bit environment. The overhead to do this is just utterly massive and impractical. – Nelson Jan 4 at 9:09

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