How to Transfer Programs to External Hard Drive Without Reinstalling

In this page, I am going to show you how to transfer programs to external hard drive without reinstalling on Windows 11/10/8/7, and offer a step-by-step guide.


By Dervish / Updated on March 27, 2024

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💡Problem  Is it possible to transfer installed programs to external disk?
🔧Safe solution  Move installed apps with App Mover
✨Further reading  Can I transfer data and programs to external hard drive?
📌Final words

Why transfer programs to external hard drive?

Transferring programs to an external hard drive can offer several benefits and serve various purposes. Here are some reasons why you might consider transferring programs to an external hard drive:

✦ Free up space on your computer: If there is not enough space on the C drive, transferring less frequently used programs to an external hard drive can help free up valuable storage on it.

✦ Backup and Redundancy: Storing programs on an external drive can serve as a form of backup. In case your computer's internal drive fails, you can still access your important programs and data from the external drive.

✦ Portability: By storing programs on an external hard drive, you can easily move them between different computers or devices. This can be especially useful if you use multiple computers or if you want to use your programs on a friend's or colleague's computer.

✦ Performance Optimization: Moving resource-intensive programs (such as video editing software or virtual machines) to an external SSD can help improve overall system performance, as SSDs generally offer faster read and write speeds compared to traditional hard drives.

✦ Privacy and Security: Storing sensitive or private programs on an external drive can add an extra layer of security, especially if you disconnect the drive when not in use.

No matter what reasons, if you are looking for a way to change the locations of installed programs, please read the following content to learn more useful information about how to transfer programs to external hard drive without reinstalling.

External Hard Drive

How to transfer installed programs to external hard drive

To transfer the installed programs to an external hard drive safely and easily, you need to try AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, which is a market-leading apps migration software that compatible with Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP.

Its "App Mover" feature support to move the installed program to an external hard drive and run it without re-downloading. For example, you can move Steam to external hard drive. Or other programs, such as Discord, Premiere Pro, Apex, etc. It is worth to say that it is easy to use, you can do it with a few clicks.

Now, please download it to see how to transfer programs to an external hard drive.

Download Demo Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Tip: If you want to transfer programs on Windows Server 2022/2019/2016/2012/2008/2003, please switch to Server Edition.

 Step 1. Connect the external hard drive to the computer and make sure it can be detected. Run AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional, click “Free up”, then select the “App Mover”.

Click App Mover

Step 2. Here, click “Move Apps” to move installed programs.  In addition, if you want to know how to transfer program files to external hard drive, please explore it by clicking "Move folders" instead.

Two Options

Step 3. Then, select the partition where the program installed and click "Next".

Select Partition

Step 4. Choose programs you want to move and select the external hard drive, then click "Move".

Move Installed Adobe

Step 5. Finally, click "OK" to generate the operations.

Click Installed

How to transfer data and programs to external hard drive

Now, you have figured out how to transfer computer programs to external hard drive from the above content. "App Mover" can only migrate applications or folders, what should we do if there are other data we need to transfer? Luckily, AOMEI Partition Assistant can solve that by "Clone Disk" feature.

It supports clone all data to external hard drive, including Windows OS. And, there are 2 cloning methods: Clone Disk Quickly and Sector-by-Sector Clone. The former refers to cloning only the used sectors, the latter refers to cloning the entire hard drive. In addition, you can migrate only Windows to external hard drive as well.

Step 1. Click “Clone” and then “Clone Disk” on the top menu.

Copy Wizard

Step 2. Here, we select “Clone Disk Quickly”.

Step 3. Select the source disk and click on “Next”.

Step 4. Then, select the external hard drive and click “Next”. You can also tick "Optimize the performance of SSD" if it's SSD.

Step 5. You are allowed to adjust the partition size on the external hard drive.


Step 6. Finally, click “Apply” and “Proceed” to submit the operations.


Final words

This is the full guide on how to transfer programs to external hard drive. As you can see, AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional can not only move programs, but also migrate entire disks, even Windows operating system.

Last but not least, there are other advanced features are waiting for you to unlock, such as, allocating free space from one drive to another, recovering data, resetting Windows password, wiping hard drive for reuse, converting disk between MBR and GPT, and so on.

Dervish · Staff Editor
Dervish is an English editor of AOMEI Technology; He is delicated to offering users easy and effecitve solutions for issuses related to disks and partitoins. In his spare time, he enjoy wathcning films, playing footable, traveling and so on.