Backup Windows 10 Files

Back in the early days of computers, if you wanted to make sure you didn’t lose a file, you just copied it to another floppy disk. It was quick, easy, and cheap. These days, we are overwhelmed by backup options. Should your files be backed up to a USB hard drive? Should you send your files to the cloud? Can you do both? The answer is yes.

File History

Windows 10 comes with backup software for the home user called File History. To use it, all you need to do is plug in an external USB drive and turn on the feature. If you leave

backup tools that might be needed by a business, File History is designed for the casual user. It is quick and easy to set up.

To start using it, plug an external USB hard drive into your computer. You will want to make sure it is big enough for the files you want to back up. Next, click in the big white search box at the bottom left corner of your screen. It is by the start button. Type “file history settings” and open the backup settings application.

Now that the program is open, click the plus sign next to “Add a drive.” The program will search your computer for any USB drives. After it finds them, it will ask you to confirm which drive you want to use. If you have several USB drives connected to your computer, make sure you pick the right one. After you select a drive, the “Automatically back up my files” option appears and is already turned on for you. Now, whenever you connect this USB drive to your computer, Windows 10 will automatically back up your files. You can use Windows File Explorer to restore your files quickly.

One Drive

If you want to send your files to the “Cloud,” you can use Microsoft Windows 10 OneDrive. The space available on the free version is pretty small, only 5 GB. It will be enough for your essential documents, though. You just shouldn’t plan to store any music or movies there because those files take a lot of space.

If OneDrive isn’t already on your computer, it can be downloaded for free from the Windows Store. After you have it installed, all you have to do is drag and drop the files you want to back up to the OneDrive folder that it builds for you. Everything you put in the OneDrive folder is automatically sent to the cloud. The nice thing about having your files backed up to the cloud is that you can access them with a web browser at the https://www.office.com/signin website. For that reason, you will want to make sure your password on your Microsoft account is good. Please see my previous articles on passwords to learn what makes a good password.

I hope you will try out one or both backup solutions. They can help save your important files in case your data gets deleted. Since they can both be used at the same time, give them both a try. The good news is, you won’t have to dig up a stack of those old fashioned floppy disks!

-Michael Martinell, The Broadband Guy