Today's Hot Topics
- Backing up your files is crucial, so here are some ways to do it on Windows 10
- Which type of backup should I make?
- File backup
- System backup
- How to back up Windows 10
- File History
- Restoring your backed up files
- Cloud Storage Services
- How to make a system backup in Windows 10
- Using a Restore Point
- Creating a System Image
- Other backup software
Backing up your files is crucial, so here are some ways to do it on Windows 10
If you regularly use a PC or laptop for work or personal use, you’ll be aware of the huge amount of data that can quickly accumulate.Whether it’s an important document, family photo or crucial piece of software, our devices can become a hub of valuable data we’d rather not lose.
However, having all this information stored on just one device makes it extremely vulnerable. Hardware crashes, malware attacks and even flood, fire and theft mean there’s a significant risk it could be lost forever if something goes wrong.Your best defence mechanism against this is to regularly back up your files. Despite most of us knowing the importance of backing up, few would be able to access everything if their PC or laptop vanished tomorrow.
The importance of a regular back up can’t be underestimated, and fortunately there are a number of ways to do this on Windows.We’ll be focusing primarily on Windows 10 here, but there are also options for Windows 7 and even the now-unsupported Windows 7. Do not that there are alternatives – or additional methods – such as cloud storage services. You can never have too many backups. Only too few.
Which type of backup should I make?
Essentially there are two main options: one concentrates on just your personal data files, while the other is for your complete system.
The first is a ‘file backup’, which allows you to make copies of individual, as well as groups of, files that you have stored on your PC.These might be important documents that you need for work, or your personal collection of photos, music and videos.
We strongly recommend that everyone who owns a PC buys some type of portable hard drive and copies irreplaceable files onto it. High-capacity hard drives and even USB sticks are relatively cheap these days, and certainly worth the investment to protect your photos and documents.For example, this 1TB drive costs £52.80/US$52.49, and has enough space to back up you photos, videos, documents and a lot more.
You can also use a portable drive like this to copy files from an old PC to a new one.
The other type of backup is known as ‘system backup’ or a ‘system image’. This is a bit more complicated as it involves making a backup copy of the entire Windows operating system that is running on your PC, as well as all your programs, files and settings.You can then use this backup to fix your PC if it is behaving erratically, or if it stops working altogether.
This type can run into hundreds of gigabytes – even multiple terabytes – but some backup software can perform something called an ‘incremental’ backup. This only includes the data that has changed since the last backup, which saves both time and storage space.
How to back up Windows 10
Windows 10 – like all previous versions of Windows – has a number of features built in that allow you to perform both individual file backups and more comprehensive system backups.We’ll start with the straightforward file backup features that you can use to make copies of your important personal files.
File History is a feature which allows you to make regular, scheduled copies of the personal data on your PC and store it on an external drive.It is possible to store your backups on your PC’s internal hard drive as well, but that’s a bit risky because anything that goes wrong with your PC or your hard drive will take that backup with it too.However, if you have two or more hard drives (physical drives, not a single drive split up into multiple ‘partitions’) then you can back up to one of those, and not need an external drive.