By Ailsa / Last Updated July 3, 2019

What is Microsoft USMT?

The USMT is short for User State Migration Tool, which is a free Microsoft command line tool to migrate user accounts, user files and folders, operating system settings, application settings, network settings and registry keys between Windows computers for administrator. If you want to upgrade hardware or operating system for a large number of computers, the USMT will do you a big favor.

USMT is applied to Windows 2000, XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, and 10, which is included in Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit (Windows ADK). Thus, please install Windows ADK first if you want to use USMT. USMT allows you to migrate from 32-bit to 64-bit computer. Of course, you can use Windows Easy Transfer to deploy a small number of computers or an individual customized computer. Or you could transfer files from old PC to new PC without losing data.

How to use USMT in Windows XP/Vista/7/8/8.1/10?

First of all, you have to know about USMT allows you to modify the USMT .xml file to automate and precisely define the migration. These .xml files are:

  • MigApp.XML. (migrate application settings)

  • MigDocs.XML. (migrate user documents)

  • MigUser.XML. (migrate user profiles and user data)

Here, to show you how to migrate files and settings from Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, or 8.1 (source computer) to Windows 10 (destination computer), 4 steps are listed below:

Step 1: Download and install USMT tools (included in Windows ADK).

You could download Windows Assessment and Deployment Kit (Windows ADK) for your current OS. Then install it, you can check the User State Migration Tool (USMT) option only.

Install USMT

Step 2: Gather data in Windows XP/Vista/7/8/8.1 using the USMT ScanState tool.

After installing Windows ADK features, please migrate user profiles and settings from Windows XP/Vista/7/8/8.1 (source computer) to Windows 10 (destination computer).

Note: Please backup the source computer, and then close all the applications. Because USMT will not migrate all the specified data when use the ScanState command if application running.

1. Input cmd in the search dialog box in desktop, right click the Command Prompt and choose Run As Administrator.

2. Then run the following command to collect all files and settings. For example:

scanstate \\server\share\migration\mystore /i:migdocs.xml /i:migapp.xml /o


Tip: If you want to exclude some certain operating-system settings, you have to create and modify a Config.xml file in the current directory. The command is:

scanstate /i:migapp.xml /i:migdocs.xml /genconfig:config.xml /v:13

3. Run USMTUtils command with /Verify option followed to make sure the migration store is intact. For example:

usmtutils /verify D:\MyMigrationStore\store.mig

Step 3: Install Windows 10 and all applications.

Install Windows 10 to destination computer, and ensure install the same version application on Windows 10 as the one on source computer. USMT does not support to migrate the settings from an older version to the newer version.

Step 4: Restore files and settings in Windows 10 using the LoadState tool.

Before restoring, close all the applications.

1. Input cmd in the search dialog box in desktop, right click the Command Prompt and choose Run As Administrator.

2. Run LoadState command to apply files and settings.

  • If you are migrating domain accounts, input:

loadstate \\server\share\migration\mystore /i:migdocs.xml /i:migapp.xml


  • If you are migrating local accounts along with domain accounts, input:

loadstate \\server\share\migration\mystore /i:migdocs.xml /i:migapp.xml /lac /lae

LoadState Local Accounts and Domain Accounts

Tip: Some settings will take effect while the user logging on again.

Download Best USMT alternative software

Although USMT is good at migrating profiles and settings between computers, it’s hard to use for ordinary users and only support some personal operating systems like Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10. Is any USMT GUI software that I can use for migration? Of course, the best powerful USMT alternative – AOMEI Backupper will do you a big favor. AOMEI Backupper is more friendly and easy to use for users to migrate user files and settings even the operating system, which supports most popular PC operating system, such as Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, and 10, etc.

Detailed steps to migrate user profiles, settings and program settings, etc. listed below:

1. Open AOMEI Backupper Professional, choose Clone -> System Clone.

System Clone

2. Choose a destination disk to save the system files.

Destination Disk

3. Click Start Clone to migrate operating system including user files and settings.

Start Clone


  • Sector by sector clone: it will clone all the sectors even it is blank.

  • SSD Alignment: check this option if the destination disk is an SSD drive.

Besides, AOMEI Backupper allows you to migrate operating system from HDD to smaller/larger hard drive like SSD, clone entire hard drive to another one, clone individual partition, sync files, backup system, partition and entire hard drive to other locations, and you could do a series of operations to a backup image, etc. For IT professionals, you can try Command Line Utility, Windows deployment services.

If you want to protect unlimited computers within your company, you can pick AOMEI Backupper Technician. With the inbuilt AOMEI Image Deploy tool, you are also allowed to deploy/restore system image file on server-side computer to multiple client-side computers over network.