Windows 10 Backup Not Backing Up All Files [2024 Solutions]

Are you having problems with the Windows 10 backup not backing up all files? Don't worry, whether you're having issues with Backup and Restore or File History, this post will help you analyze the exact causes and provide remedies. Furthermore, for easier and more effective file backup, EaseUS Todo Backup will be introduced.

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Updated on Feb 26, 2024

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🙍‍♂️User Case:
"Hello! I'm having problems with File History backups; I experienced the same problem with my Surface Pro 3 as well. A year later, it appears that the problem has not been resolved. I only discovered today that not all of my files are being backed up, despite the fact that I've put them in the "Back up these folders" list.
Is there a method to resolve this? Backups are really important to me, and doing them manually is honestly not the best option for me; it's time-consuming and cumbersome. I'm used to using Time Machine on Mac OSX, and backups have been my main concern since switching to Windows."        - from Microsoft Community

Have you ever had the same problem with the Windows 10 backup not backing up all source files or not working at all? Actually, Backup and Restore and File History are two built-in backup programs for Windows computers. According to customer comments, both solutions have the issue of Windows backup not backing up all files. 

Don't be concerned if you find yourself in the same circumstance. This article will walk you through the exact reasons why the backup files are missing, as well as how to remedy it step by step. Furthermore, to avoid making the same mistake or if you don't want to try the remedies one by one, we will provide a superior alternative, EaseUS Todo Backup, to make the backup procedure much easier.

File History Not Backing Up All Files - How to Fix

File History was first introduced in Windows 8 build, and is also available on Windows 8.1,  Windows 10, and Windows 11. It has the feature to automatically backup your files, including Document files, photos, videos, music, and desktop files, to the external hard drive or network locations. 

📖Read this post to get more detailed information about File History: Beginner's Guide: How to Use File History Windows 10

When you have trouble with File History not backing up all files, it may be caused by the following factors:

  • The source file is corrupted or destroyed;
  • The files name contain special symbols;
  • The files are under a deep directory structure;
  • Your files are encrypted and protected;
  • File History application error;
  • The backup target locations are running out of storage.

We have given several solutions based on the causes, and we hope they will properly resolve the issue.

Fix 1. Delete Previous Backups and Enable File History Again

If the backup missing files issue is caused by a File History application error, you can turn it off, and then enable it to try the file backup task again. By doing so, the File History will be force refreshed. If it doesn't work, you may need to delete the previous backups and try another time.

enable file history

Fix 2. Check and Modify File Names or Directory Structure

These file names containing unusual symbols are not recognized by File History. Check to see if the ignored file name contains any special characters. If so, modify and eliminate them.

Another explanation could be that you saved the file in a deep directory structure, resulting in a failed backup. In this situation, remove it from the original path and reorder it.

reorder location

Fix 3. Run SFC to Repair the Corrupted Files

SFC (System File Checker) is a useful program for automatically locating corrupted or damaged files and replacing them with intact ones. If the backup ignores some files, it is possible that these files are corrupted. 

Step 1. Enter Command Prompt in the search bar, and open it Run as administrator.

Step 2. Type the command scf /scannow, and click Enter.

run sfc scannow

Step 3. It will detect the destroyed files, and repair them automatically.

📖Read Also: Fixed: SFC (SFC / SCANNOW) Is Not Working on Windows

Fix 4. Decrypted Encrypted Files

File History can't back up files that are EFS encrypted. If you receive an error notice such as "File history has found files that are encrypted with Encrypting File System" or something similar, please check to see if your files or folders have been encrypted. If so, you may need to decrypt them before backing them up.

Fix 5. Check Backup Target Location Storage Space

Most users will disregard the target location storage space and will rarely check it. Your file cannot be successfully backed up if it is too large. In this case, you should prepare a new hard drive or delete unnecessary files. You can check and deal with your hard drives with Windows Disk Management.

open windows disk management

Backup and Restore Bot Backing Up All Files - How to Fix

Backup and Restore (Windows 7) is another commonly used Windows built-in backup program. Available on Windows 7/10/11, it allows users to create a system image and backup specific files and folders. However, it doesn't work as smoothly as imagined every time. It is said that many users have gotten notices, saying "The backup did not complete successfully", or "The last backup did not complete successfully" on Windows 10.

📖Read this post to get more detailed information about Backup and Restore (Windows 7): An Ultimate Guide: How to Use Backup and Restore in Windows 7/10

The Windows backup didn't complete successfully may be caused by many reasons. Here are some possible ones:

  • File corruption or damage;
  • Insufficient hard drive space;
  • Unstable connection;
  • Malware or virus attack.

Now, follow the methods below to fix the issue.

Fix 1. Perform SFC to Check the Files

Running System File Checker (SFC) can assist in identifying and repairing these files. SFC may be executed by opening Command Prompt as an administrator and typing "sfc /scannow" and clicking Enter. It is possible that the process will take some time, and the computer will need to be rebooted afterwards.

Fix 2. Check Hard Drive space

You should check their hard drive space and ensure there is enough to complete the backup. If the hard drive is full, users can free up space by deleting unnecessary files or transferring them to an external drive.

Fix 3. Check the Connection

Check the connecting cable and ensure it is correctly attached when backing up to an external hard disk. Users can also try a different cable or USB port to see if it helps.

Fix 4. Scan and Delete malware and Virus

Malware and viruses can disrupt the backup process. Run a comprehensive system scan and remove any malware or viruses found.

Windows 10 includes built-in antivirus protection in the form of Windows Security, which can be reached by typing "Windows Security" into the search bar and then opening the app. Users can then choose "Virus & threat protection" and "Scan options" to perform a comprehensive scan.

📖Read also: Windows Backup Did Not Complete Successfully - How to Fix?

EaseUS Todo Backup: Windows 10 Backup Best Alternative

File History and Backup and Restore are both convenient and easy-to-access backup solutions for Windows users. However, they have limitations. File History only back up files, while Backup and Restore can save a copy of the system and files. If you want to protect your computer in all aspects, you'll need a comprehensive backup utility, like EaseUS Todo Backup. 

EaseUS Todo Backup is an on-in-all backup method with the features to backup files, folders, disks, partitions, systems, and App data, including game save, Chrome bookmarks, and passwords, etc. With various types of backup, you can set a scheduled backup plan to let it work automatically. It supports saving backups to hard drives, NAS, cloud service, etc.

Download and use it to back up your files with simple steps.

Step 1. Click the "Select backup contents" button to start backup.

create file backup step1

Step 2. There are four data backup categories, File, Disk, OS, and Mail, click File.

create file backup step2

Step 3. Both local and network files will be listed on the left. You can expand the directory to select the files to be backed up.

File backup

Step 4. Follow the on-screen guide, select the destination where you want to save the backup.

File backup step4

Click "Options" to encrypt the backup with password in "Backup Options", set the backup schedule and choose to start back up at certain event in "Backup Scheme". There are also many other options you can explore, customize the backup task according to your need.

Backup options

Step 5. You can store the backup to local drive, EaseUS's cloud service, and NAS.

file backup step4

Step 6. EaseUS Todo Backup enables users to back up data to both third-party cloud drive and its own cloud drive.

If you want to back up data to third-party cloud drive, choose Local Drive, scroll down to add Cloud Device, add and login your account.

Backup to cloud
You can also choose EaseUS's own cloud drive. Click EaseUS Cloud, sign up with your EaseUS Account and log in.

backup to easeus cloud

Step 7. Click "Backup Now" to start backup. After the backup task is completed, it will be displayed in the form of a card on the left side of the panel. Right-click the backup task to further manage it.

File backup step7

The Bottom Line

Windows 10 Backup not backing up all files may be caused for multiple reasons. Our guide leads you through each potential problem and suggests a remedy. With the tips provided above, I hope you are able to effectively resolve the error.

If you don't want to try each solution one by one or want a more advanced backup alternative, EaseUS Todo Backup is an excellent choice that can suit your numerous backup demands while also ensuring your data is safely preserved.

FAQs on Windows 10 Backup Not Backing Up All Files

1. Why does my Windows backup not complete?

Windows backup not complete may be caused for many possible reasons, which include:

  • Corrupted files
  • The files are encrypted
  • The file name contains special symbols
  • The File is under the deep directory structure
  • Malware and computer virus
  • Unstable connection
  • insufficient disk space

2. How to do a full system backup on Windows 10?

To perform a full system backup on Windows 10, you can use Backup and Restore:

  • Control Panel > Update & Security > Backup and Restore (Windows 7)
  • Create a system image
  • Select the backup destinations
  • Select the drive that contains the Windows 10 system
  • Click Star backup to begin the process.

3. Does Windows 10 backup only backup changed files?

Only altered files can be backed up in Windows 10. The feature is known as incremental backup, and it works by only backing up files that have been updated or created since the previous backup. This method aids in the optimization of the backup process by reducing backup time and saving storage space.

EaseUS Todo Backup

EaseUS Todo Backup is a dependable and professional data backup solution capable of backing up files, folders, drives, APP data and creating a system image. It also makes it easy to clone HDD/SSD, transfer the system to different hardware, and create bootable WinPE bootable disks.

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    Larissa has rich experience in writing technical articles and is now a professional editor at EaseUS. She is good at writing articles about data recovery, disk cloning, disk partitioning, data backup, and other related knowledge. Her detailed and ultimate guides help users find effective solutions to their problems. She is fond of traveling, reading, and riding in her spare time.…
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