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Using Blender 2.74 it appears some key things have changed. In the previous versions I found it simple to transfer weights from one mesh to a new mesh, then transfer the armature (parent) to the new mesh and delete the old. The new mesh was then a drop-in replacement of the old mesh, requiring just a little weight painting to correct errors in the transfer. With 2.74 I've been trying this and while I get the weights transferred without issue, no matter how I parent I end up with the new mesh parented to the armature but the vertex groups no longer transfer. Instead all I get is a single RFIK vertex group while the original vertex groups are still there but separate from the mesh. How do I get the armature AND the vertex groups to transfer to the new mesh?

Further twiddling and I see I get one vertex group to transfer only if I select it in the mesh from which the skin weights are being transferred. When I export the end model (new mesh with parent armature) it complains about a lot of empty vertex groups for the mesh because only the one vertex group associated with the weights for the new mesh transferred. This process used to transfer ALL vertex groups to the new mesh and there's no apparent "select all" option for vertex groups so I'd have to manually select every single vertex group and copy them over? There must be a better way.

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OK, I stumbled upon the answer. Perhaps settings have changed since the 2.6x series but I found that for Transfer Weights, settings appear underneath with one of them referring to "Source Layer". Setting this to "All Layers" when doing the Transfer Weights causes all the weights AND vertex groups to transfer to the new mesh. After that, just delete the original mesh and then parent the new mesh to the armature.

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