Best Data Migration Software

Data migration tools are invaluable for businesses, as they facilitate safe data transfer and can save a lot of time. Here are the best programs to consider, as well as some important factors to keep in mind before deciding on the right solution for your needs.

Dusan Vasic Image

Updated: August 18,2022

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Editor's Choice

More than likely, you’ve been in a position that required the grueling task of transferring data between hard drives. Have you treated yourself to a brand new SSD, but the thought of reinstalling your operating system and accompanying applications seemed tiresome?

Thankfully, there are better and faster ways of getting your PC back on track without having to resort to manual installation of each individual program or endlessly copying data meant for backup. 

That’s where data migration software comes in, transforming the arduous process of data migration into a simple task.

Best Overall
Backup: Cloud, network drive, external drive, NAS
Additional Features: Anti-ransomware, anti-malware, recovery
Free Trial: Yes
Price: $49.99 per year
KEY FEATURES
PRODUCT SUMMARY
PROS & CONS
·
Flexible backup options
·
Ransomware protection
·
Microsoft 365 compatible
·
Automation tools
Backup: HDD, SSD, drive image
Additional Features: Account transfer, program key export, data recovery
Free Trial: Yes
Price: $59.95 annual subscription
KEY FEATURES
PRODUCT SUMMARY
PROS & CONS
·
For Windows XP and newer
·
Windows Server supported
·
PC-to-PC transfers
·
App and data migration
Get 50% Discount on EaseUs for World BackUp Day - $29.97/year. GET DEAL
Backup: HDD, SSD, NAS, cloud drives
Additional Features: Bootable rescue media, email notifications, compression, encryption
Free Trial: Yes
Price: $49.95
KEY FEATURES
PRODUCT SUMMARY
PROS & CONS
·
Supports servers and desktops
·
Cloud drive and NAS backups
·
Comprehensive free version
·
For Windows XP and newer
Best for Hard Drive Health
Backup: Drive, virtual hard drives
Additional Features: Disk partition management, recovery, disk wipe
Free Trial: No
Price: $79.95
KEY FEATURES
PRODUCT SUMMARY
PROS & CONS
·
Bootable recovery
·
Advanced partitioning features
·
OS-only and complete migrations
Best Partition Management & Backup
Backup: SSD, HDD
Additional Features: Disk partition management, recovery, bootable media builder
Free Trial: Yes
Price: $59 annual subscription
KEY FEATURES
PRODUCT SUMMARY
PROS & CONS
·
Free version available
·
Disk and OS management
·
Creates bootable media
·
Supports Windows 7 and up
Best for Speed
Backup: HDD, SSD
Additional Features: Multiple transfer options, 24/7 assistance
Free Trial: No
Price: $59.95
KEY FEATURES
PRODUCT SUMMARY
PROS & CONS
·
Customizable system migration
·
24/7 customer support
·
Compatible with Windows XP and up
·
Streamlined data transfer
Best for System Restoring
Backup: HDD, SSD, image
Additional Features: Recovery, cloning
Free Trial: Yes
Price: $49.95
KEY FEATURES
PRODUCT SUMMARY
PROS & CONS
·
Official Microsoft partner
·
Quick and simple data restoration
·
Creates bootable drives and recovery partitions
·
Free trial available

Do I Need Data Migration Software?

Our team recommends exploring data migration tools when you’re replacing either your system or storage drive. Furthermore, migrating data for backup and implementing other data loss solutions is a prudent move.

Windows 10 reinstallation may require you to download and install multiple updates. Simply migrating the clean and up-to-date Windows 10 installation from a backup may save you a lot of time when you’re booting up your system from the ground up.

Migration software can help you by keeping backup data on a spare drive. Therefore, you can avoid any unpleasant situations if you don’t have top ransomware software or power surge protection to keep your information safe.

Why Do Companies Need Specialized Software for Data Migration?

Manipulating and transferring data from massive data centers is another category altogether, compared to creating an exact clone drive of your PC. Enterprises might upgrade their hardware infrastructure or perform maintenance while needing to preserve the same databases. This type of software can be helpful for website consolidation or even data center relocation.

Data Migration Challenges

The reputation of data transfers being risky and complex is well deserved. It’s especially true for complex data centers that require lengthy planning and always pose a risk.

1. Data Loss

The potential loss of data is the most serious issue that can occur during the data migration process. The software solutions presented here eliminate most of the risk, and each has its approach to data mapping and migration while including other features.

2. Poor Execution

Failure to prepare properly and use the appropriate software can cost your company both time and money.

Therefore, when you upgrade your servers or personal hardware, implementing the appropriate data migration tool and professional help can save you more than a few valuable hours.

3. Hardware Manufacturer-Specific Tools

Hardware manufacturers like Samsung, Intel, and Western Digital have their own data migration solutions. However, these programs are helpful if both drives are from the same manufacturer. Samsung’s software, for example, isn’t compatible with Western Digital. Therefore, we’ve reviewed universal solutions that aren’t limited to particular hardware. 

TOP DATA MIGRATION SOFTWARE TOOLS

  1. Acronis True Image
  2. Paragon Hard Disk Manager Advanced
  3. MiniTool Partition Wizard Pro
  4. EaseUS Todo PCTrans Pro
  5. Laplink PCmover Professional
  6. O&O DiskImage 16.5
  7. AOMEI Backupper
Reviews

Acronis True Image Review

5
Backup:
Cloud, network drive, external drive, NAS
Additional Features:
Anti-ransomware, anti-malware, recovery
Free Trial:
Yes
Platform:
Windows, Windows File Systems, macOS, macOS File Systems, iOS, Android

After testing seven different solutions, we've come to the conclusion that Acronis True Image offers the best data migration tool. It combines both a personal backup and an anti-malware solution

If you’ve ever had issues with ransomware, you’ll appreciate the significance of this feature. With both cloud and external drive backup, any files that were encrypted as a result of a malicious attack can be restored with just a few clicks. 

Acronis True Image allows users to back up their information on the cloud, external drives, network drives, and NAS devices. However, cloud storage requires an Advanced or Premium subscription. Don’t worry. This data migration software’s free trial comes with all the features available with the Essential version. This includes full image backup, file-level active disk cloning, recovery options, and antimalware protection for the drive you’re using. 

The Advanced subscription includes 500 GB of cloud storage, while the Premium starts with 1 TB for free with the option to upgrade to 5 TB. Furthermore, those plans include Microsoft 365 backups, while the Premium version has blockchain certification of files and electronic signatures for further protection and privacy. Having the option to protect both Android and iOS devices is another feature that most users will find handy. 

This disk migration software has a simple and effective interface. You can select specific files and folders or the entire drive (the default choice by the software) and the backup destination to transfer files to. It’s up to the user to choose a backup schedule. The program includes the “nonstop” option that actively backs up new and updated files.  

Even though our team recommends using dedicated antivirus software, Acronis’ AI-enhanced behavior analysis handles malicious files superbly. Keep in mind that the Advanced and Premium subscription plans include complete malware protection, while the Essential only deals with ransomware. AV-TEST, an independent IT security institute, analyzed the antivirus features, and Acronis passed with flying colors. 

As a backup, antimalware, and data migration tool, Acronis True Image provides an all-in-one package that eliminates the need for you to pay for an antivirus. However, if you’re in the market for just a migration tool or backup software, you should consider less costly options. The program also lacks any partition management features that some data migration solutions have.

EaseUS Todo PCTrans Pro Review

4.5
Backup:
HDD, SSD, drive image
Additional Features:
Account transfer, program key export, data recovery
Free Trial:
Yes
Platform:
Windows (10, 8.1, 8, 7, Vista, XP), Windows Server

Another data and OS migration software solution comes from EaseUS. The Todo PCTrans application is reliable data migration software that provides users with an easy way to transfer data between Windows-based platforms.

EaseUS Todo PCTrans offers a free version. However, most users will use it to test out the program with a small file transfer since it’s limited to two programs and up to 500 MB of data in total between two PCs or local drives. 

Home and Business users are not limited in the amount of data or programs they can migrate. In addition to data migration features, the EaseUS Todo PCTrans subscription includes data rescue and recovery options, scan and transfer program keys, and user account migration. The business plan is suitable for a workload on multiple PCs.

EaseUS Todo PCTrans does direct PC to PC transfers, app migrations, and image transfers. You can also back up your PC on an external drive by creating an image file. Furthermore, the program has a system and a large file cleanup feature. Users with clogged-up drives find these features useful, especially if you need to clean up before storage migration.

The main limitation of this hard drive migration software is that it’s only developed for Windows, so it won’t work on another operating system such as macOS or Linux. However, it does support Windows XP and above and multiple Windows Server versions from 2003 to 2019. The list of software that EaseUS Todo PCTrans supports for the application transfer feature includes Microsoft Office, AutoCAD, Photoshop, and Lightroom. 

The main downside of EaseUS Todo PCTrans is the price tag for an individual user. A monthly subscription of $49.95 for a license that includes two computers is a bit steep. For a much lower price, Acronis True Image provides malware protection and cloud storage. 

Our examination of Todo PCTrans found this data migration software for Windows 10 and below to be perfectly adequate. For businesses, this software saves plenty of time for IT admins.

AOMEI Backupper Review

4
Backup:
HDD, SSD, NAS, cloud drives
Additional Features:
Bootable rescue media, email notifications, compression, encryption
Free Trial:
Yes
Platform:
Windows (10, 8.1, 8, 7, Vista, XP), Windows Server

Migration and backup software often go hand in hand. When you migrate data to a backup, it essentially serves the same purpose as preserving the data. Another paid and free OS migration software solution is AOMEI Backupper. The program is available for both home and business use, and depending on the subscription, you may even have more tools available. 

The Server and Technician Plus plans support Windows Server from 2003 to 2019 (including R2), while all other plans support Windows XP and newer. Home users will rarely need to use AOMEI Backupper for server-based operating systems and will do much better with the Standard freeware version, Professional, or Workstation. At the same time, it’s useful to have the option of free data migration software and the ability to try it out before you upgrade. 

As the name suggests, AOMEI Backupper can create backups of your system and data drives, then clone them, effectively migrating your information to a new drive. The software has no issues with data migration from an HDD to SSD and even backing it up on local, external, USB flash, and cloud drives. It also supports NAS devices. Paid plans include backup encryption for an extra layer of data security and a compression algorithm for backed-up data images

AOMEI Backupper interface is easy to navigate and intuitive to use. Even users who don’t have a great deal of experience will find it simple to set data migration software for SSD cloning while taking advantage of the SSD Alignment feature. 

You can determine the automatic backup schedule and even sync files between folders or devices. Our DataProt team also liked seeing the option to create Windows PE bootable rescue media on a USB drive, DVD, or CD. 

AOMEI’s pricing for individuals and businesses isn’t based on a subscription model, but on a perpetual license with the option to upgrade to a higher plan. For a home user, it has the best balance of extensive backup features and price you could ask for in program migration software. However, you might want to check out Acronis True Image or MiniTool Partition Wizard Pro if you’re looking for additional features.

Paragon Hard Disk Manager Advanced Review

5
Backup:
Drive, virtual hard drives
Additional Features:
Disk partition management, recovery, disk wipe
Free Trial:
No
Platform:
Windows (10, 8.1, 8, 7 SP1)

If you’re looking for the best PC transfer software, you can’t go wrong with Paragon’s Hard Disk Manager Advanced. The program has excellent features, including data migration options that are worth checking out.

Whether you’re looking to back up your system, migrate data from a source disk to a target disk, or completely wipe your data, Hard Disk Manager Advanced can help you stay organized. 

If you want to upgrade your PC with a new SSD, the software is perfectly capable of supporting an HDD to SSD migration. Furthermore, you get to decide whether you want an OS migration or the complete disk clone. 

The program even includes a File Transfer Wizard that enables it to copy files between storage drives formatted for another operating system. This comes as no surprise since Paragon developed dedicated software for macOS and Linux as well.

Like Acronis True Image, Paragon has recovery tools in the form of its Recovery Media Builder. Users can choose to recover data from virtual backup containers like pVHD, VHD, VHDX, VMDK, and PBF images while having the option to encrypt their backup and compress it. Most users will appreciate the software’s ability to change partition sizes, delete, split, merge, format, and even reformat them to different drive formats like FAT32, NTFS, and HSF.

Windows migration software from Paragon also includes comprehensive data deletion tools with multiple algorithms to remove your data thoroughly after the migration process.

Furthermore, the Recovery Media Builder addon allows for restoring your computer in the WinPE (Windows Preinstallation Environment). It provides an excellent solution for emergencies when you can’t boot up your drive. And if that’s not enough, Paragon Hard Disk Manager Advanced even includes email notifications to let you know if the migration or other processes were successful.

The cost is another strong suit. Most software migration programs we reviewed include a subscription-based payment plan, whereas with Paragon Hard Disk Manager Advanced, home users usually pay a flat fee. With business versions, there are subscription and perpetual licensing models on offer and a 30-day free trial to see if the program is right for you.

MiniTool Partition Wizard Pro Review

4.5
Backup:
SSD, HDD
Additional Features:
Disk partition management, recovery, bootable media builder
Free Trial:
Yes
Platform:
Windows (10, 8.1, 8, 7)

MiniTool Partition Wizard comes with both free and paid versions. To use it as an HDD or SSD migration software, you’ll need the paid Pro option. 

Primarily MiniTool Partition Wizard is a disk management tool. However, the program does include an impressive amount of features that most demanding users will find helpful. The software has tools to migrate OS to an SSD or HDD, create bootable media, data, and partition recovery tools. Furthermore, users can run diagnostics on their disk drives, analyze read and write speed, find bad sectors, and fix file system errors.

Unfortunately, MiniTool Partition Wizard is Windows-only software. Thankfully, it still supports older versions of Windows, which even Microsoft doesn’t support anymore. Therefore, this hard drive migration software will help you migrate data from older OS versions like Windows XP, Windows 7, and above. 

MiniTool Partition Wizard has a nicely designed and user-friendly interface. Main program functions are sorted in the top tabs, with each subsection having multiple options and tools. You can queue up different operations and make changes or prioritize other tasks. If you’re not experienced with disk management features, each task launches a wizard that will guide you through the process and help you perform data migration easily.

MiniTool Partition Wizard has free, Pro, Pro Platinum, and Pro Ultimate versions. There is a considerable annual subscription cost but with licenses for fewer PCs than with Paragon Hard Disk Manager Advanced or Acronis True Image. 

The best offer for this HDD and SSD data migration software is the Pro Ultimate version with the perpetual license for up to five PCs and a somewhat reasonable price tag. Having a partition management tool is convenient, and MiniTool Partition Wizard offers users even more.

O&O DiskImage 16.5 Review

4
Backup:
HDD, SSD, image
Additional Features:
Recovery, cloning
Free Trial:
Yes
Platform:
Windows (10, 8.1, 8)

O&O DiskImage is widely regarded as one of the top data migration tools on the market. O&O Software is a German company with more than 20 years of experience. This military-grade system is an official Microsoft Partner and a NATO supplier. 

O&O DiskImage is a valuable disk imaging tool for Windows users that enables you to backup complete computer drives or create more selective backups. Since we live in an era where digital assets are as important as physical ones, having an option to restore data from your personal computer with one click is important. 

By creating a disk image, you can quickly migrate your data to a new drive, and DiskImage works smoothly throughout the entire data migration process with HDDs and SSDs alike. 

O&O DiskImage has an option to create a bootable USB or a CD/DVD to restore your Windows system. Furthermore, you can establish an O&O DiskImage RecoveryPartition, which will restore the last system image directly from it. This recovery partition provides an additional layer of security if you misplace the external recovery medium. 

Users can set up an external recovery drive, allowing for plug-and-play backups. The O&O DiskImage To Go function serves as data migration software by creating a boot medium from any external drives you choose as a backup. Each time you plug in the selected drive, the software will automatically back up your system, and if required, restore it back with just one click. 

Unlike the other software solutions we tested, O&O DiskImage doesn’t support earlier versions of Windows, focusing more on Windows 10, 8.1, and 8. However, Windows 7 backups created with DiskImage can still be restored. If you prefer to give free data migration software for Windows 10 a try, AOMEI Backupper is a better option.

How We Tested & Evaluated Data Migration Software

Software Differences

Most software solutions that promise successful migration of data have different approaches. Some programs are entirely focused on migration, while others have additional functions, like backup, disk cloning, partition management, data erasure, and even anti-ransomware and anti-malware features.

Most programs differ in the way they approach migration. Some software solutions can support migration to different kinds of medium, while most can support HDD to SSD migration which most users looking to upgrade their PCs will appreciate.

Of course, some software options stand out thanks to their comprehensive offer. The best migration software might fit one user while not covering the needs of a business with an IT department regularly maintaining and servicing the computer infrastructure.

Therefore, our team explored the tools developed by different manufacturers and found offers that cover the needs of everyday users while providing a bit extra.

What to Expect from Backup Functionality?

Most software we reviewed either has automated backup and file syncing, or they require users to maintain and update image backups of their system. 

Software options that provide a way for creating cloud backup options have the most significant advantage. Also, a comprehensive offer that includes file syncing with external drives, and network-attached storage or NAS, is an excellent asset to have when moving data.

While free data migration software for an SSD is a good starting point, we recommend you explore additional ways to preserve your digital assets. Most migration-oriented programs can assist you with creating safe backups for a flat fee, which can be priceless, knowing that you’re keeping precious memories or important work-related projects safe.

Partition Management

Most tools capable of creating clones of your drives or making an exact match of your system come with powerful built-in partition management features. While this isn’t a must-have, more often than not, it’s useful, especially if you need to restructure the source disk before cloning or migrating it.

Bootable Recovery

Bootable recovery is an excellent option for a file migration tool to have. Within the Windows PE environment, you can initiate the recovery of your system, saving you plenty of time that would go towards a complete Windows reinstallation process.

Price

Price is always the decisive factor, and in a best-case scenario, it should be proportional to the features the software has. Some solutions we reviewed provide a better balance between the cost and features than others.

FAQ
What is the best data migration software?

The best software for your data or system migration depends on your needs. If you’re looking to move just your OS to a brand new SSD, AOMI Backupper, EaseUS Todo PCTrans, Paragon Hard Disk Manager Advanced, and MiniTool Partition Wizard Pro are the best solutions. 

However, almost all programs we reviewed can help you back up and migrate the necessary data to a new PC.

How do I migrate to SSD for free?

Most software solutions that we reviewed have a free trial that you can use to try out the migration features. All programs can help you move your system to an SSD from an HDD.

What is data migration software?

It’s software capable of moving applications, data, and even operating systems from one environment to another. The process creates an exact copy and prevents data loss, and it’s often necessary because of hardware maintenance, upgrades, or data recovery. Some tools are even capable of transferring accounts, settings, and other user data between different environments.