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I am wanting to transfer a large installed program, 16gb to another PC.

The reason I want to do this is because I only have access to a very sporadic and slow internet connection, and it would literally take a month to download it again.

The program is only available by digital distribution, which makes things harder.

I am aware that copying programs is bad form, due to missing registry entries and whatever other problems can occur.

Is there any way I could perhaps copy the files and run the installer, which would see that the files were present and not need to download them again?

If it is relevant, the program I refer to is World of Warcraft

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It's very hard to track down all the files out of program files required, as you say it's often the registry. Next time you think you might need to do this, you could either keep the installer file, or use something like SnoopFS to see where it writes to. It seems Wow acts nicely in this regard. – tobylane Apr 7 '11 at 17:05
up vote 3 down vote accepted

I’m not sure what Blizzard has done that is special with WoW, but I know from personal experience that you can copy the entire directory (by default it's in the C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft directory) from one Windows computer to another Windows computer and it will run without trouble. Once the copy is complete you will want to create a shortcut to the Launcher.exe located in the World of Warcraft folder.

Like you said, most other programs do not work this way (at least in the Windows world).

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I've done this multiple times previously, works without issue. – Psychoholic Apr 7 '11 at 17:45
The entire Crysis series also has no trouble with transfers like this. – cybermonkey May 17 '14 at 11:21

Very good if world of warcraft works that way, but considering wide list of software's this would not work always. Best solution to do this is using a software called Laplink's PC Mover

though it says windows 8 in hyperlink, it works with windows xp too.

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At the very least install the base WoW application and then copy and paste the files from the other computer over the installation.

This will allow all the necessary reg settings to be set and then all the app files placed.

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I don't know specificaly about WOW. Some installers msi for example do provide a way to find out what they are doing. Therefore you could duplicate what the installer is doing but this would could be hard.

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From personal experience, the WoW folder can be copied or even shared to more than one person on a network. No need to worry about registry stuff, WoW will create it on startup.

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