Saturday, February 4, 2023

How To Backup My Laptop To An External Hard Drive

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Why An External Hard Drive Backup

How to Back Up Your Windows 10 PC to an External Hard Drive

So, first up, why might you want to create an external hard drive backup?

The obvious reason is its a contingency plan. Hard drives are physical devices, and they can destruct. Keeping a backup on your existing hard drive wont help you if that hard drive fails!

What about cloud backups. Absolutely. A cloud backup is a good thing to have. However, an external hard drive backup means youll be able to restore your computer with or without a functioning Internet connection.

For many, this is a more convenient and secure option.

How To Take A Partial Backup Of Your Computer

If you only care about keeping specific files and folders on your computer backed up, you can automatically save all of these to an external hard drive at a regular time interval of your choosing.

While a partial backup of your Windows 10 computer won’t protect your operating system settings, it will save all of your important files without consuming too much storage space. It’s a more efficient and convenient way to protect files you can reinstall onto a recovered Windows 10 computer should you ever need to reinstall Windows 10.

  • Select the Start menu and type “backup.” Select Backup settings to open the Backup area of your computer’s System Settings area.

  • Under the Back up using File History section, select Add a drive to choose the external hard drive you want to use for your file history backups.

  • Doing this opens a Select a drive popup listing all external drives you have connected to your computer. Select the external drive where you want to back up your important files and folders.

  • You will now see Automatically back up my files enabled. It will use a default list of files and folders most users want to keep backed up. To add more files and folders, select More options under the toggle.

  • Determine What Should Be On The Computer Backup

    Almost everything on your device falls into one of two categories: personal items or program files. Depending on how you use your computer and whats important to you, you may want to back up one, the other or both.

    Personal itemsPersonal items are just what they sound. This is content youve personally created. Data like documents, spreadsheets, photos, music and movies fall into this category. And yes, even though you probably werent the original creator of most of your music or video files, you generated the file by saving it to your computer, so those count!

    For most users, personal files are the most important. When you decide what you want to include in your hard drive backups, these are what youll focus on. And its easy to see why. These files are usually irreplaceable and not saved anywhere else.

    Program filesProgram files include your operating system, settings, apps and any associated files. In most cases, you can easily replace program files by re-downloading.

    But you may want to include your program files in your backup if you have specific, customized settings. Saving program files on your computers backup will save a lot of time and effort, especially if you like to tweak your registry and update often.

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    How To Use An External Hard Drive Faq

    What does an external hard drive do?What are the advantages of an external hard drive?

  • It has large storage capacity.
  • Its portable so that you can take it anywhere.
  • Its a safe backup device.
  • It can be used for a long time.
  • How do I download a program to an external hard drive?

  • Plug the external hard drive into the computer.
  • Press Win + E to open File Explorer.
  • Navigate to your program setup file and double-click it.
  • Follow the onscreen instructions to install the program, and when you are asked where you want to save the program, choose on location on your external hard drive.
  • What do I do when my external hard drive is not detected?

    Back Up And Restore Your Pc

    How to Backup an iPhone to External Hard Drive with Mac OS X

    There are several ways to back up your PC.

  • Select the Start button, then select Control Panel > System and Maintenance> Backup and Restore.

  • Do one of the following:

  • If you’ve never used Windows Backup before, or recently upgraded your version of Windows, select Set up backup, and then follow the steps in the wizard.

  • If you’ve created a backup before, you can wait for your regularly scheduled backup to occur, or you can manually create a new backup by selecting Back up now.

  • If youve created a backup before, but want to make a new, full backup rather than updating the old one, select Create new, full backup, and then follow the steps in the wizard.

  • Note: Do not back up files to the same hard disk that Windows is installed on. For example, do not back up files to a recovery partition. Always store media used for backups in a secure place to prevent unauthorized people from having access to your files a fireproof location separate from your computer is recommended. You might also consider encrypting the data on your backup.

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    How To Backup An Iphone To An External Hard Drive In 2021

    Backing up your iPhone is a smart move because it can protect you if you lose your iPhone or if it becomes damaged at some point. Although Apples own iCloud backup service is great and we have a guide on how to backup iPhone to iCloud it means putting all of your data under the control of Apple .

    If that doesnt sound appealing to you, or youre running out of iCloud storage space, then youll want to learn how to backup an iPhone to an external hard drive. This involves moving your previously hidden iPhone backup files from your Windows PC or Mac to an external hard drive.

    Youll need an external hard drive with enough storage to be able to do the job, so look at investing in one of the best external hard drive options before you consider backing up your iPhone files.

    How To Backup Your Computer To An External Hard Drive

    If only! This is the two-word refrain of anyone who lost hard drive data without having a solid backup waiting in the wings. Learning how to backup your computer to an external hard drive may not be the most fun way to spend a sunny Saturday afternoon, but trust us on this!

    You may well be thanking yourself later.

    Nerds On Call Computer Repair are always here to help you retrieve lost hard drive data, but when it comes to keeping your data safe, the simple fact is that prevention is way better than finding a cure!

    So heres a quick and snappy guide to keeping your data safely backed up on an external hard drive. Well start by giving you the pros and cons of opting for an external drive backup. Then well walk you through the five key principles of data backup. Then well give you a step-by-step walkthrough for backing up your data to a Mac or a Windows PC.

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    Tip 1 Get To Know Reasons For Backing Up External Hard Drive

    Thanks to its large storage space, the external hard drive has become an important data storage device. An external hard drive can help you:

    • enlarge insufficient storage space
    • resist Internet virus attack and malware infection
    • protect data when the computer system crashes
    • access data you want anytime and anywhere

    Since it can bring you so many benefits, why not choose an external hard drive for data backup or storage.

    How Much Capacity Do You Need

    Backup data with External Hard Drive

    The best value are typically for the largest hard drives as you can see, but it brings considerably higher prices and not everyone needs that much capacity. So how much do you need? We recommend a backup drive at least twice as large as the total capacity of your PC. If you have 1TB of storage in your PC, 2TB will allow you to make a full backup while keeping historical backups on the same drive. Having more storage allows you to keep more historical files should you need them or use the same drive to backup additional PCs.

    While the desktop drive provides a far higher capacity, they also require more cables, weigh more, and generally may not be quite as shock resistant as a portable hard drive thats designed to take a few more bumps, even when on.

    The worst value for an external hard drive is typically the lowest-capacity drive.

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    Restore A Backup Made On Another Computer

    You can restore files from a backup that was created on another computer running Windows Vista or Windows 7.

  • Select the Start button, then select Control Panel > System and Maintenance > Backup and Restore.

  • Choose Select another backup to restore files from, and then follow the steps in the wizard. If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

  • S To Backup A Computer To External Hard Drive

    Owing to the simplicity and compactness of external hard drive, it is always recommended to prepare a backup copy of individual files on an external hard drive. For data enthusiasts, doing so is a kind of data insurance. It is so because in case the users lose their important data, then theyll be able to retrieve their lost data. However, such retrievals are possible only if data has effectively been backed up.

    It is an admitted fact that if nothing is handled professionally, then fruitful benefits cannot be reaped. Although there is a lot of third-party software to ease the process of preparing backups over an external hard drive, following are some of the generic steps to let the users do this on their own:

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    Save Lost Data From An External Hard Drive

    Similar to internal hard drivers, an external hard drive may also lose data due to various reasons, such as mistaken deletion or hard drive failure when you manage it.

    If you have a backup for the data in the external hard drive, you can restore your data with the backup.

    If you unfortunately find that your files or programs stored in the external hard drive is lost and you have no backup for the drive, you need to stop using it right now and try to recover files from the external drive with a third-party software as soon as possible.

    MiniTool Partition Wizard is powerful in recovering deleted files and data from formatted or virus attacked disk. It is worth trying.

    Step 1: Launch MiniTool Partition Wizard.

    Step 2: Click Data Recovery from the tool bar and select your external hard drive in This PC. And then click Scan.

    Step 3: Now you just need to check the files you want to recover and then click Save to place the recovered files into a safe position.


    If it is the first time to recover files from an external drive, you may be a little confused. To know more details, you can read the following article: The Full Guide to SSD File Recovery on Windows 10/8/7/XP.

    Its Necessary To Back Up Your Computer

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    Is it necessary for computer backup? It is believed that many of you probably ask this question. The answer is Yes. Why? In one word, it is for data protection.

    As is well known, the computer is widely used to cope with some things in work and life. Then many types of files can be stored on your computer, including documents, financial information, movies, pictures, games, and so forth.

    Nevertheless, some computer accidents happen from time to time, such as system failure or corruption, virus attack, computer damage, hard drive damage and more. And then some troubles happen to you, for instance, your computer fails to boot or some important information on the computer hard drive is lost.

    When is the last time you backed up all the vital important pictures, movies, music files, documents and more? Never? Last year? Last month? If you dont create a backup, just do it now.

    How do I back up my computer? In the following, we will show you the best way to back up computer.

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    Backup Files To External Hard Drive In Windows 11 With Aomei Backupper

    The mentioned built-in tool is convenient, but there are some minor drawbacks that cannot be ignored, such as File History drive disconnected, Windows 11 backup cannot add folder, File History does not recognize the external hard drive, and The system cannot find the file specified so on.

    Therefore, you can choose a more secure and stable third-party file backup software. AOMEI Backupper Standard is a good choice, which can backup any files and make sure their security by compressing to an image file. Here are some advantages of it:

    • It supports not only file backup, but also partition backup, system backup and disk backup.
    • You can write comments to your backups and set up email notification.
    • It offers different backup modes and different compression levels .
    • You can backup your files with fixed intervals and choose a way perform scheduled backup, both full backup and incremental backup are available.
    • It supports various storage devices, such as USB, HDD, SSD, etc.
    • It has a great compatibility in the operating system

    Step 1. , install and open it. Connect the external disk.

    The Tools You Need To Back Up Your Computer

    Weve put hundreds of hours of research and testing into our storage and cloud backup guides to find the best tools for the job. This is the gear numerous Wirecutter staffers rely on to back up our own data. If you already have drives or a backup service that works for you, were not saying you should switchthat could be time-consuming and costly, for little benefitbut if youre starting from scratch or looking to replace a piece of your setup, our picks are for you. Most people are best served by an external hard drive and a cloud backup service subscription, coupled with their operating systems free, built-in tools.

    Our pick

    *At the time of publishing, the price was $60.

    The easiest way to protect your data in case of robbery or disaster is to complement your local backup with an online backup service. Such services charge a monthly fee in exchange for storing your encrypted data on their servers. With their software, you can customize your preferences and retrieve your data whether youve lost everything or overwritten a single file. We detail how to back up your computer using Backblaze in this guide, but its cost-effective only if youre backing up one computer. If you need to back up multiple devices, we recommend IDrive.

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    One Backup Isnt Enough: Use Multiple Methods

    RELATED:You’re Not Backing Up Properly Unless You Have Offsite Backups

    So which should you use? Ideally, youd use at least two of them. Why? Because you want both offsite and onsite backups.

    Onsite literally means backups stored at the same physical location as you. So, if you back up to an external hard drive and store that at home with your home PC, thats an onsite backup.

    Offsite backups are stored at a different location. So, if you back up to an online server, like Backblaze or Dropbox, thats an offsite backup.

    Onsite backups are faster and easier, and should be your first line of defense against data loss. If you lose files, you can quickly restore them from an external drive. But you shouldnt rely on onsite backups alone. If your home burns down or all the hardware in it is stolen by thieves, youd lose all your files.

    Offsite backups dont have to be a server on the Internet, either, and you dont have to pay a monthly subscription for one. You could back up your files to a hard drive and store it at your office, at a friends house, or in a bank vault, for example. Itd be a bit more inconvenient, but thats technically an offsite backup.

    Back Up Hard Drive Windows By Disk Cloning

    How to back up a Windows computer with WD SmartWare

    In the above content, the backup method of your computer is to make an image. Besides, you can back up your hard drive in Windows 10/8/7 by disk cloning. By this way, the data stored on the destination disk is identical to the data on the original hard drive.

    From the desktop files to the device drivers, from the operating system to hidden directory files, everything is copied completely and identically. By this way, you can use the destination disk as the bootable disk when the system fails to run.

    In order to do disk cloning for disk backup, you can still use MiniTool ShadowMaker which provides you with the Clone Disk feature. After selecting the source disk you want to clone and the target disk for the disk copy, you can start to clone your hard drive for disk backup.

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    Create Local Mac Backups With Time Machine

    To back up your Mac, youll use Time Machine, which comes free with macOS. Like Windows File History, Time Machine takes snapshots of files and stores them on your external hard drive.

  • Connect the external drive to your Mac. You may get a dialogue box asking you to format the drive for macOS this guide walks you through how to do that, and we recommend the default macOS Extended format because youll encrypt your backup through Time Machine in the next steps.
  • Once formatted, open System Preferences, select Time Machine, click Select Disk, and select your hard drive.
  • Check the Encrypt Backup Disk box. We recommend encrypting your backup for security. Click Use as Backup Disk.
  • Create a password for your encrypted backup. Dont forget this password because without it you wont be able to access your backed up files.
  • Thats it Time Machine will now run in the background. By default, Time Machine backs up your entire drive, including the operating system and system folders. You can remove folders if you dont want them backed up by opening System Preferences, clicking on Time Machine, then clicking the Options button. We recommend keeping everything else on the default settings.

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