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Hard Disk Backup in Windows 10/8/7 [Beginners' Guide]

Updated by Jean on Dec 06, 2021
Written by Brithny

Create hard disk backup

Are you looking for a complete and easy guide to create a hard disk backup on your computer? Stay here and follow through with this beginners' guide, you'll learn how to back up your computer hard disk data easily on your own.

Why Is Hard Disk Backup Necessary 

Hard disk backup is a process to create a complete copy of everything in a hard drive to another HDD/SSD or an external hard drive. With a hard disk backup, you can fully protect your computer data from the following disasters:

Maybe you can recover hard disk data from various data loss situations with reliable data recovery software or data recovery service. However, this is always a plan B, not the best way to protect your files. 

The best way is to regularly back up data from a hard drive with reliable hard disk backup software or a manual backup method. So how to create a hard disk backup? Now, you can follow the below guide to effectively back up hard drive data on your own.

Preparations: Things to Do Before Hard Disk Backup

Here, you need to first ask yourself two questions before moving to back up a hard disk:

  1. 1. Where do you want to save the hard disk data backup?
  2. 2. In what way will you use it to back up the hard disk data?

If you don't know, stay here. And check the preparation list below, you'll know the answer:

#1. Prepare a new HDD/SSD or an external hard drive

  • Purchase a big HDD/SSD or an external hard drive
  • The new disk must be bigger than the used space of your target drive
  • Recommend external hard drive > HDD > SSD

An external hard drive is better than HDD as it offers a more secure backup circumstance with high capacity at a low price. And the HDD is better than SSD as HDD is cheaper than SSD. See also: HDD vs SSD

#2. Connect and initialize the backup drive to your PC 

  • Connect the new disk to your computer correctly
  • Initialize the new disk:
    Right-click the new disk in Disk Management > "Initialize" > Select disk partition style - MBR or GPT.

#3. Pick a suitable hard disk backup method

1. Windows Backup Software 2. Windows Built-in Backup Utility
  • Multiple backup modes - OS backup, file backup, hard disk backup
  • 4-step backup
  • Easy
  • Free
  • Multiple steps to back up
  • Complex

For a Windows beginner, we suggest you turn to Windows backup software like EaseUS Todo Backup we recommended in Guide 1 for help.

Guide 1: Hard Disk Backup with Windows Backup Software

As a matter of fact, only a very small group of people know how to find a reliable backup tool to backup data from the hard drive safely and easily. Here we recommend you to try EaseUS PC backup software, a utility that works perfectly well to back up the whole hard disk, partition, or operating system.

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Support Windows 11/10/8/7

The program can help you do the following operations to protect your hard drive data:

  • Back up and recover specified files and folders.
  • Back up and recover partition or disk, including the OS.
  • Automatically backup hard drive with a schedule.
  • Execute differential or incremental backup.
  • Restore system to a new computer.
  • Clone hard disk or partition to another one.

How to Back Up Hard Disk Data with EaseUS Backup Software

Step 1. For the first time you use EaseUS Todo Backup to back up files, click Create backup on the home screen and then mouse click the big question mark to select backup contents.

backup files step 1

Step 2. Since you're going to back up files and folders on your computer, go on with the "File" backup mode, where you can select pictures, videos, documents and all other types of files to back up.

backup files step 2

Step 3. Follow the paths to locate the files, folders or directories you want to back up, select them all and click "OK".

backup files step 3

Step 4. Now you need to select a backup location to save and retain the backup.

backup files step 3

Step 5. EaseUS Todo Backup allows users to save the backup files to every device that is handy for you, like a local hard drive, external USB drive, SD card, network drive, or a NAS drive, plus a cloud drive of the EaseUS brand. We personally recommend users to choose the cloud drive prior to a physical drive to save important backups due to the greater accessibility, flexibility and safety.

backup files step 5

To be able to access to EaseUS cloud, all you need is an email registration and login. 

backup files to cloud

Step 6. If you're interested in an automatic and intelligent backup schedule for the next file backup task, go on with the "Options" setting. There you can encypt a confidential file backup, compress the backup image size, or customize a backup scheme to tell the software in what time to start the next backup. 

Customize an advanced and automatic backup task here:

backup scheme

Step 7. Click "Backup Now" to start the file backup process. Your completed backup files are visible on the left area in a card style.

backup files step 6

Guide 2: Back Up Hard Disk Data with Windows Backup Utility

The other way that you can try is to use Windows built-in backup utility - Windows Backup and Restore feature. It's a bit complex but useful when it comes to creating a backup of hard drive data and Windows system in Windows 10/8/7.

Steps to Back Up Hard Disk Data using Windows Backup and Restore

Step 1. Connect the external or internal hard drive to your PC.

Step 2. Press Windows + X keys, click "Search" and type control panel. Click "Backup and Restore (Windows 7)" in Control Panel.

Open Windows and Backup

Step 3. On the left pane, click "Create a system image".

Click create a system image to start back up hard disk data

Step 4. Click to select the new external or internal hard drive as the backup disk under the On a hard disk section and click "Next".

Select a destination hard disk to save the backup

Step 5. Select the hard drive that you need to backup and click "Next".

Select target hard disk to backup

Step 6. Confirm your backup and click "Save settings and run backup".

Confirm to back up hard disk

Wait for Windows Backup and Restore to complete the backup process. This wizard will proceed to create a full backup of your hard disk data, even including the operating system. With the hard disk backups, you can recover your hard drive anytime.

You May Also Interested In:

Extra Guide: How to Back Up Hard Disk on Mac

In Guide 1 and Guide 2, we showed two detailed tutorials to help you back up hard disk data in Windows 10/8/7. Some of you may wonder to know how to create a hard disk backup on Mac.

If you are with the same question, try any one of the following 3 tutorials:

  • #Tutorial 1:

Back Up Mac with Time Machine - Apple Solution

  • #Tutorial 2:

Back Up Mac without Time Machine

  • #Tutorial 3:

Back Up Mac to External Hard Drive

Start To Create Your Hard Disk Backup Now

On this page, we collected two reliable and efficient ways to help all Windows users creating hard disk backup in Windows10/8/7 and Windows XP/Vista. For Mac users, we also listed three tutorial links for you to refer to back up hard disk data on Mac.

To create a Windows hard disk data backup with ease, EaseUS backup software is good for you to try.

  Free Download

Support Windows 11/10/8/7

You can be the first person to rescue lost data from accidentally deleting, formatting, virus attack, or other situations. Take action and start creating a backup of your Windows or Mac hard disk data now.

After making a backup, data recovery from the corrupted hard drive will become as simple as A-B-C.

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Updated by Jean

Author Jean has been writing tech articles since she was graduated from university. She has been part of the EaseUS team for over 5 years. Her special focuses are data recovery, disk partitioning, data space optimization, data backup and Mac OS. By the way, she's an aviation fan!

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Written by Brithny

Brithny is a technology enthusiast, aiming to make readers' tech life easy and enjoyable. She loves exploring new technologies and writing technical how-to tips. On her spare time, she loves sharing things about her favorite singer - Taylor Swift on her Facebook or Twitter.

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Product Reviews

TrustScore 4.7 | 47 reviews
  • Taking everything into consideration, we can say that EaseUS Todo Backup Home can offer you a little extra sense of security with a set of advanced tools. The interface provides quick adaptation, every process guiding you all the way through so you don't get stuck or further damage your system rather than keeping it safe.

    Read More
  • EaseUS Todo Backup Free lets you create backups of your important files or your entire computer through its streamlined interface. Just choose the backup type you'd like to get started, and let the program do the reset.

    Read More
  • EaseUS includes all the features I expect from backup software like versioning, incremental backups, and scheduling. For more advanced users, EaseUS allows you to install a pre-boot environment onto your hard drive so you can use it to restore files without burning a CD or putting it on an external USB drive.

    Read More

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