Provided your old system is up and running, get that ext. HD. If any s/w comes with the new ext. HD, use the cloning or mirror image pgm. if none provided check the support website and get it, it must be the same brand as the HD support. So if Seagate, then Seagate support website and get that s/w. Clone or mirror image and store it away. Now when new system arrives, copy or swap data to new system. You really don't want to re-mirror or clone to the new system HD, as that can't be done correctly since it will be Vista and even then different systems entirely.
Once all the above is done and data is correct and safe. You can use HD eraser pgm. like Killdisk or DBAN to totally wipeout the HD. Google for author sources, very good pgms.
Hi There...planning on buying a new laptop soon (most likely running Windows Vista) and selling my old one (running Windows XP, SP 3) to a friend. Problem is, I'd like to know how to copy my entire computer (files, programs, etc.) to an external hard drive so I can put it all on my new one when I get it. Ideally, I'd like to leave my old one with no trace of my owning it and have my new one with all the files, programs, etc. from my old one on it. Can anyone tell me how this is done? Much appreciated if so...thanks.