Contact migration

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Reader Klaus Prinz is moving from a Windows PC to the Mac and asks:

How can I import the addresses from the address book on my PC to the Entourage address book?

Both Window’s Address Book and Microsoft Outlook’s Address Book support the vCard format, a universal standard that lets you easily move contact information from one electronic device to another (this may be from a PC to a Mac, from a Mac to a mobile phone, or a PC to an iPod). Because Entourage also supports this standard (as does Apple’s Address Book), we’ll use it to move your contacts from the PC to the Mac.

Create a new folder on the PC’s desktop and call it Contacts. Launch Address Book or Outlook and select the contacts you want to move to the Mac. Drag these contacts from their home to the Contacts folder you created. In a short while, your contacts will appear within the Contacts folder as separate vCard files.

Note, unlike with Apple’s Address Book, these PC applications are unable to create a single vCard file that holds multiple contacts. If you select multiple contacts in Address Book and attempt to export all those contacts as a vCard you’ll be told that you need to select one contact at a time. This will give you one more reason to be glad you’ve moved to the Mac.

Move this folder full of contacts to the Mac—you can do this over the network if you’ve linked the two computers in this way or dump the folder to a portable storage device such as a USB key drive and then mount this device on the Mac. Launch Entourage and then open its Address Book. Open the Contacts folder on the Mac and select all the contacts in it. Drag the selected contacts to the open Entourage Address Book window and marvel as your Entourage Address Book is populated with your PC’s contacts.

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