The Hell of a New Computer

I got a new computer last week. Thank heaven I am organized and somewhat computer savvy, or I never would have survived. I’m still not sure I will survive.

Switching to a new computer is like moving house. You know it will be great once it’s over, but going through it is very stressful. Things that you did every day without even thinking now require effort. You’re not sure where to find your stuff. Some things are improved but some are not as good as you remember.

To move to a new computer, I knew that I needed to have two things handy:

  • A definitive list of all the software programs that I use.
  • All of my personal files (documents, photos, videos, bookmarks) on an external hard drive.

Luckily, I keep a running list of my software programs as I purchase them, along with software keys where needed. I use the password program LastPass, which I knew would greatly facilitate logging on to download my software. Installing LastPass was one of the first things that I did on the new computer.

Nevertheless, it took me longer than I expected to get my software programs installed and set up the way I like. I’m still discovering settings that I need to tinker with. In some instances, the programs I was using aren’t downloadable anymore, so I’ve had to upgrade to newer versions, and I’m not quite acclimated yet.

Before buying the new computer, I upgraded my old computer from Windows 10 to Windows 11. I found the transition to be very smooth, which emboldened me to get a new Windows 11 computer. But there are some Windows 11 features that I’m not quite used to yet, and some Windows 10 features I miss.

As for my personal files, I have a lot of them. I started going through them a few days before the transition to find folders and files that I didn’t need anymore. I got rid of a lot. Even so, when I copied what was left onto an external hard drive, it still took a long time. I realized that the ones taking the longest were videos of shows I had been in or had directed. I decided to just keep those on the external hard drive, and not to copy them over to my new computer. That sped up the second transfer quite a bit.

My computer guy suggested that I keep my personal files in OneDrive on the new computer. That results in them being backed up to the cloud and also makes them available on any of my other devices. However, it is taking a long time to get all of the files copied to the cloud. I have started syncing only when we go to sleep. If I keep the syncing on during the day, it slows down my network so much that we can’t get any work done! (My husband also works from home.)

At some point in the near future, I know that I am going to be using my new computer as seamlessly as my old one. As an Organizer, I’m a big fan of making improvements and doing things more efficiently, so I know I did the right thing. But right now I am deeply out of my comfort zone.