How to Move Your Data from a Windows PC to Your Mac

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  • Published on
    October 10th, 2019
  • Updated on
    February 20, 2021
  • Read Time
    5 minutes

If you have just bought your MAC and you are willing to switch from Windows PC to Mac, congratulations! You’re eager to use your Mac, but you’ve assembled years of data on that PC. Switching platforms does not mean to start over: You can still use those old files. Apple makes it easier with a free utility called Migration Assistant. So, in this article, I will be explaining how can you move your data from a Windows PC to your Mac. Before moving to the solution, let’s first know about Migration Assistant.

What is the Migration Assistant?

Migration Assistant is a utility provided by Apple, which is included in the utility folder of every Mac. You can see it when you first start up your Mac when Mac asks if you want to transfer data over from another Mac, a Time Machine backup, or a PC. Migration Assistant can transfer your contacts, calendars, email accounts, and more from a PC. Additionally, it migrates this data to the appropriate places on your Mac.

Apple makes the app freely available to download for transferring to your Mac. You’ll require specific software, depending on what macOS or OS X operating system you’re transferring to. You need to download the Migration Assistant software to your PC before you begin.

Before you Start

For a smooth migration, you are required to keep certain things in mind like:

  • Make sure that Windows is up to date. Migration Assistant works with Windows 7 and later.
  • Just keep in mind that you know the name and password of an administrator account on your PC.
  • You are required to connect your Mac and PC to the same network, such as your home Wi-Fi network. Or you can connect an Ethernet cable between the ports on your Mac and PC in order to create a direct network connection. Some Mac models require an Ethernet adapter, such as the Belkin USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter or Apple Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter.
  • If you are using Microsoft OneDrive on your PC, just follow Microsoft’s instructions for uninstalling OneDrivebefore continuing. You can reinstall OneDrive after the migration is complete.

How to Move data from a Windows PC to your Mac?

Just follow the below instructions to move data from a Windows PC to Mac.

  1. Download and install the appropriate Windows Migration Assistant on your PC, based on the version of macOS on your Mac:
    • Windows Migration Assistant for macOS Mojave or later.
    • WMA for macOS Sierra and High Sierra.
    • Windows Migration Assistant for OS X El Capitan or earlier
  2. Then, Quit any open Windows apps.
  3. After that, Open Windows Migration Assistant, then click Continue.
    Migration Assistant
  4. Next, start up your Mac. The Setup Assistant will automatically open the first time you turn on your Mac. If you’ve already set up your Mac, open Migration Assistant, from the utility folder of your Applications folder.
  5. On your Mac, follow the screen prompts until you get to the migration pane of the assistant. Then, select the option to transfer your information.
  6. Click on From a Windows PC, then click Continue.
    Windows data tranfer process
  7. When prompted, type an administrator’s name and password.
  8. Now, click Continue to close any other open apps.
  9. Under the migration window, select your PC from the list of available computers. Then wait for the PC to show the same passcode that your Mac shows.
  10. When you see both the computers are displaying the same passcode, click Continue on your PC and Mac.
  11. Now, your Mac scans the drives on your PC to build a list of information to migrate. Once the scan completes, select the information that you want to migrate to your Mac and click Continue.

You can see the progress and estimated time remaining on both the PC and your Mac. It will tell you when migration is complete.

After transferring your data

When the migration process gets complete, just close Windows Migration Assistant on your PC. After that, log in to the new user account on your Mac. The first time you log in to a user account migrated from your PC, you are asked to set a password. You can use the similar password that you used on your PC, or else create a new password.

Other ways to move data (files) from a Windows PC to a Mac.

There are several other ways to transfer data (files) from a PC to a Mac, including:

  • By using the “PC Data Transfer Service” at Apple Retail Stores and Apple Specialists
  • By using a portable hard drive or storage device
  • A CD or DVD burner
  • Other portable media
  • Making use of a shared file server
  • By using email
  • A direct Ethernet connection
  • By installing the PC’s hard drive in the Mac, if compatible

Bottom Lines

The article is describing the best techniques to move your data from a Windows PC to your Mac. The Migration Assistant is a utility provided by Apple that can easily transfer the data from a Windows to a Mac. Other than this, there are various other methods which are mentioned in this article. I hope they solve your purpose.

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